Flying Charlie 2000 PLUS – Simple, fast and reliable automation of mortars – (FC)
Started in 2009 like an add on for Hunter but around 2012 promoted to indepentent project – This is automation for new or upgrade for already used mortars from 80 to 120 mm calibre – This system is result of update of tactics used from mortar teams in Vietnam to modern standards and can be used in all and different kind of situations plus it can be especially good if used by fast moving combat units – Main idea is to automate all process regarding mortar allowing action in under minute (or few seconds) from given notice – Can be (and possibly will be) used with optional automated warehouses (Integrated in system) with up to 90 ammo storage (120 mm) with possibility to choose ammo, chose desired effect on target (predefined behaviour) and all that controlled only by one operator in lot of possible configurations: on small towed trailer usable by all units but also fit for fast air drops or amphibious actions, on boat or small vehicles or even buried with 2 months of standby work – It will be digitally managed with very advance possibilities of usability, masking, usable 360 degree by azimuth and 180 by elevation (0-180) and similar – It is planned to weigh between 1 and 2.5 tons, which will depend on the combat set (with up to 90 mines in 1 or 2 automated storages) with special trailer for it which will allow action from driving to stop to fire in not more than 15 seconds, up to maximum 4-6 sec per every shot where shots can be fired at totally different directions by azimuth or elevation and continuation of driving in another 15 sec – That mean you can drive / stop / launch an attack with few mines / continue to drive in 60 – 80 seconds
Time needed for finishing R&D and making first rudimental models and proof of concept – 4-6 months
That’s only supportive construction including ammo storage – We don’t intend to create mortars but system for its automation – We will firstly create base version but there are already few add-ons which will when everything is finished create totally new weapon system which in general only have mortar barrel but its performances and possibility of use are totally new and much better from ordinary mortar (and all automated versions on market today) – Bellow you can see that last (fifth) upgrade of Flying Charlie will be usable in lot of different situations but one very important is during rapid occupation of the airports or creating forward observing base (occupied/conquered position) – Its possibilities will allow to be able to immediately defend that position after being disembarked from the aircraft or helicopter – That is very desirable feature / possibility because all other small and big already fielded artillery systems need lot of time for preparation – Quite informative example is French artillery unit which has ben available only after 4 hours of preparation in situation wher their solders was rapidly deployed (parachute landing) on some airport in African state Mali where their military is deployed in fight against terrorism – Compare FC with any other weapon (towed or even self-propelled howitzers / cannons) and it will have advantage in – possibility to be transported by plane or helicopter / speed for taking and abandoning defensive position (at most 1 min) / rate of fire / possibility to attack 360 degree around and at distances from 150 m up to 10-12 km in seconds / easy camouflage / quantity of available ammo all over the line of conflict and last but certainly not least it will be operated only by one person!
Why this project approach is very powerful one – It offer total and independent system for automation of mortars which mean we did not touch mortar tube (up to third phase of developing) and change anything on it which simplify process of evaluation and proving its usability – This approach allow end user to use its already available weapon system (in use) and their stock of ammo – Flying Charlie will have possibility to adapt to different versions (in terms of mortar barrel length and other specifics) of the system end users use and at the same time enable their further use and improvement of performance and capabilities – As the FC system improves, so will the systems which he automate in terms of performance and opportunity – If end users want some add-on for their already fielded Flying Charlie’s it will have a chance to see what any specific add-ons allow and to decide do he want that or no
This kind of approach is, I believe, better than some that are applied by many companies at the present time that insist on selling their “fully completed systems” including not only mortar barrels but also specific ammunition, which limits end user and makes him dependent on the manufacturer – This way some state (end user) can have several types of already fielded and used weapon systems (mortars) and Flying Charlie will allow them to continue using all of them if they wants to – In nowadays times when states experience taught political pressure and coercion to make certain decisions Flying Charlie will be very potent solution because it will allow them to lover their dependency allowing them possibility for strategic manoeuvring avoiding political and possibly economical blackmail
Some of Flying Charlie native possibilities will be great side effects for end users
Because FC is totally automated it will simple allow more integration and “interoperability” of end users especially if they are members of same organisations like NATO/CSTO/GCC or possible future ones like European defence group – If they use FC it will not be too much important what type of mortar they have and it will be easy to replace them if requested – All that part of weapon manipulation will be automated and platform for control will be electronics which can be integrated in some system for awareness and interchanges of targets – Small mechanical and software adjustments for FC and you can put totally new mortar (barrel) in it because system will support it – It will be easy to change ballistic tables or better say to integrate or change them in electronics and you are already integrated in system – Using FC that way will lower problems of education and getting new experts for system because it will be easy to educate end users how to operate them which is totally opposite regarding learning how real mortar operate and how to use it correctly and precisely which is demanding and slow process
For Flying Charlie we intend to have at least 4 different phases – All of those will be done separately and at the end that will give result in very potent and dangerous weapon system!
1. First phase – Finishing developing up to making basic version of automated mortar
a. all main parts of a system (automation of a barrel/ automated storage) allowing
i. loading ammo into the barrel
ii. targeting and firing
iii. developing first platform – small trailer
2. Second phase of development will improve system in next way
a. add on for cooling of a barrel and conditioning of the entire system
b. opportunity for unloading and safe storage of misfire ammo
c. opportunity for unloading of “wrong type of ammo” and changing it with desired ammo
d. improvements of targeting system / implementation of new strategies for desired effect
3. Third phase of development will improve system in next way
a. add on for automated loading ammo into storage (resupply of a storage)
b. add on for decreasing energy which impacts ammo and its balistic performances (up to 90% of energy reduction which will allow totally new possibilities for use)
c. add on for barrel conditioning and cleaning
4. Fourth phase of development will adapt whole system for
a. small 4×4 platforms
b. version for digging (buried) into the ground (up to 2 months of stand by without touch)
c. version to be usable on small river or see patrol boats / small ships and similar
5. Fifth phase of development will upgrade whole system up to the totally next level
a. It will become remotely driving / self-propelled system for using in outward (occupied) positions (airstrips and small isolated bases) – It will have opportunity to be pulled/towed for a long distances and normally transported by plane / helicopter but at the end it will have opportunity to be self-sufficient into moving on small distances for taking up prepared defensive positions or changing it easily if needed
Beside general design regarding this project (automating barrel) we already finished lot of work through developing automated storage for up to 45 x 120 mm mines which is beside automation hart of this system – 3D design / CAD parts / CAD and 3D animation assembly / concept for electronic and way of work regarding loading ammo into storage and delivering it to the mortar to fire it – In meant time it was been possible to further improve work of automated storage by adding concept for automated replenishing after you empty it – Hard labour regarding loading of all mines (up to 45 x10-12 kg = 540 kg in this case) will also be automated and simplified to the extent that it is only necessary to put the mine on one stand and the system will do everything else itself regarding putting it in the storage!
All that will be put on special trailer designed for fast move and fast use of this system – That trailer can now be seen in advance through conceptual appearance of the same with regard to all the parts that have been developed so far, ie created and placed in the general assembly
Regarding electronic we already conceptually develop 2-3 types for automated storage management where differences are mainly regarding how end user will operate them and how system will know what mine type is in what part of storage
One example of cost-to-earnings ratio – Base version of Flying Charlie will approximately cost from 5-10 thousand euros (per unit / without barrel mortar) for initial production and one 120 mm mortar can be from 8-10 thousand euros (per unit) which mean NewTeC can finish this project for automation for just fraction of a price of few finalised specimens!
009 003 2020 – Almost all what was intended to be done into first phase was done but with some modification which will influence already predicted phases!
In last 2-3 weeks almost all work regarding making all parts for first phase was finished – That lead us into some very nice achievement after so many years of not so intensive development – In last few months NewTeC has seen lot of work with intention to finish all what was needed regarding Flying Charlie and we almost done all that!
What was left will be mentioned at the end of this list – What was done in last months and especially in last few weeks:
Kind a special trailer for LC was created using standard parts but with redesign of main frame – Design was improved few times in a move to better suit LC on it – Important this is that this design can be done by any trailer manufacturer
Few subassemblies of whole system was done and improved trough 3 different working modes regarding trailer which lead us to make some decision and we are just into preparing forth / final mode regarding trailer variant – Main work was done into allowing better operational possibilities when in position to fire
Main subassemblies used in this work was
• automated storage for mines of 120 mm – up to 35 of them in this variant
• manipulation regarding transfer from transport mode into armed mode
• manipulation regarding precisely taking positions (azimuth/elevation) for barrel
• manipulation of weapon system regarding allowing removing misfired mine
• 3-4 different trailer variants (main frame) up to now
Whole work was done into move to show main characteristics and possibilities of whole system and that was done successfully – In mean time we have been in position to almost develop in whole system for replenishing of ammo storage which mean we didn’t lose time and looking all mentioned up to now i think it is visible that we have done huge amount of work which lead us into position that we are near finishing line of finalizing LC in whole – All this will make influence on mentioned phases in a good way because some of mentioned there was already developed and can be implemented into whole project allowing that even base system function much better and allow advanced possibilities!
What was left to do?
To make finishing touches regarding optimization – We have found few things we can improver regarding all mentioned subassemblies in a move to make whole system more compact regarding transport on a trailer and prepare it for future possibilities like using it from 4×4 vehicle (famous Toyota technicals in meddle east will surely do the job) plus this optimization will lead us into possibilities to easily make small ship variant and future self-driving variant – That mean we saw opportunities to change few things and to allow much better compactness of whole system and better interconnectivity of different subassemblies – That will lead us into smaller “footprint” regarding size of system on a trailer where main ideas is to make system as much as smaller if possible to be able to make them look like similar trailer already in use in military units which will help masking of it!
Main achievement was that we has being in opportunity to see all subassemblies into one picture and to work with them which simply lead us into noticing possibilities for improvements – After we finished mentioned in above paragraph next move will be investing time into making 1:3 model on 3D printer which will allow us more to be done regarding finishing details and few other improvements regarding all functionalities because we know we can make this system more optimized and we intend to do that!
Now – Few Final worlds for possible investors or companies willing to talk about cooperation
We can do all this like up to now – alone but that will increase time needed to do all those but we can do it with your support and we can done that in next 1-2 months’ timeframe – Next will be making real size functional test model (prototype) for evaluation which can be done in next 1-2 months which will lead us into few finishing changes and modifications up to final testing’s!
Help us / Support our work / Get yourself licenses for production or Get the whole project (that depends on what you are interested in long term) – We are available for communication regarding cooperation – If you support us through cooperation we will do this faster and you will have product fitted for market which already show interest for this kind of systems! Who first on market with system like this will simply make more earnings in long term – Contact us – We are available on Telegram for any further communication!
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