Minefields Continue to present a Major Obstacle in the War in Ukraine

If anything can be learnt from the war in Ukraine it is the future of warfare is mainly focussed on remote drone attacks, underlining the need for air superiority.

Despite the amount of armoured vehicles in use on both sides, and the devastating fire power which can be wrought by tanks, artillery and ships batteries combined, forces on both sides continue to be successful in using drones for top down attack on troops and armour.  From much of the news coverage, you would think that modern warfare has forgotten about long-term strategies and the dangers of ground attack.

However, both sides continue to use trenches and minefields to great effect, much as they were used in World War I - mainly for protection of their exisitng positions on or near to the front line.

To shift the offense-defense balance in its favor, Russia has designed one of the largest defensive systems in Europe since World War II," a new Center for Strategic and International Studies report said, noting that the Russian lines in the Zaporizhzhia Oblast are the "most extensively fortified."

Russian foces appear to have effectively used electronic warfare (EW) systems, air support, and landmines against Ukrainian forces. As well as having severely interfered with Ukrainian command and control signals, GPS-enabled devices, UAV controls, CNN additionally reported that an anonymous US official said that Russian landmines degraded Ukrainian armored vehicles.

Russian doctrine for a defending motorized rifle battalion calls for a first echelon of troops to repel or slow attacking forces with minefields, fortifications, and strongpoints, with a second echelon of forces counterattacking against an enemy breakthrough and thisappeared to work successfully for the Russian troops southwest of Orikhiv during the attacks in early June. Russian forces apparently operated in this fashion in this sector – Ukrainian forces penetrated the initial defensive lines; Russian forces pulled back to a second line of fortifications; and Russian reserves subsequently counterattacked to retake the initial line of defenses.

The use of minefields was particularly effective, as Open-source reporting confirms the Ukrainians lost one Leopard 2A6 from their 33rd Mechanized Brigade, possibly nine M2A2 Bradley Fighting Vehicles from their 47th Assault Brigade, and one BMR-2 mine-clearing vehicle in a failed attempt to breach a minefield south of Mala Tokmachka on June 8, 2023.

Indeed, according to La Monde, the Russians have landmined Ukrainian territory at an unprecedented rate, making it one of the largest minefields in the world. It's estimated that approximately 170,000 square kilometers are now covered with anti-tank or anti-personnel landmines, which is about the size of Florida, or almost six times the surface area of Belgium, although it is estimated that some of these will have been laid by the Ukrainian forces.   This resulted in another failed attempt on 11th June to breach a minefield where three of Finland's six Leopard 2R mine-clearing machines supplied to Ukraine were lost.

Whilst it is appreciated that much of the technology supplied by Western forces to the Ukraine is not the latest all-singing, all-dancing version of the vehicles, it suggests that a different approach is required to deal with breaches of minefields and this is where Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems' Armored Vehicle Blast Protection System can come to the fore, enabling armies to redefine tactics, as well as adding additional protection against underbelly mine blasts and IEDs.

New Strategic Airspace Integration Plan

The Future Aviation Industry Working Group (FAIWG) have issued a 3 to 5-year action plan called ‘Let’s get flying: our plan for action’.

This strategic airspace plan sets out how the emerging generation of aviation vehicle types (including eVTOLs) can be successfully integrated alongside existing airspace users.  The plan outlines how allowing a range of different users to share airspace can bring multiple benefits that a segregated system cannot.

For example:

  • providing a greater degree of flexibility as new use cases emerge in future while avoiding reduced access to airspace for existing users
  • allowing uncrewed and crewed operations to co-exist in the same locations
  • removing the need for airspace users to understand and comply with an increased complexity of airspace that a segregated approach would cause

Main Themes

The plan focuses on 18 vital actions based around 3 main themes:

  • accelerating speed to market
  • establishing economic models
  • clarifying roles and responsibilities

Accelerating speed to market

To help businesses reduce risk and develop marketable services the plan focuses on the specific developments required in:

  • regulations
  • standards
  • operating models
  • infrastructure provision

Consulting, developing, and implementing these interventions must be a collaborative activity between policymakers, regulators and industry. This will instill confidence in the approach, the solutions and help speed up market readiness for industry.

It is also good to see that safety has been highlighted in the group recognises that the industry needs to adapt to change in a safe and sustainable way. The public expects and deserves to maintain or improve the level of safety for commercial flight that is achieved today in the UK, where it is often one of the safest forms of travel.

Establishing Economic Models

Establishing economic models focuses on the actions required to create sustainable economic models and clarity on who pays for underlying costs such as:

  • air traffic and flight information services
  • pilot training
  • investment in ‘detect and avoid’ measures
  • how airspace changes are charged across different airspace uses

Clarifying these items will allow the relevant stakeholders to forecast and define appropriate business models and end-user pricing more accurately.

Clarifying Roles and Responsibilities

Finally, the plan looks at clarifying roles and responsibilities, supporting several essential elements of the Civil Aviation Authority’s airspace modernisation strategy.

Clear resources and accountabilities for delivery of the lower airspace vision from that strategy are required.

Also, crucial to supporting safe and cost-effective airspace integration are:

  • digital services
  • clear responsibilities for distribution of flight data
  • information provision
  • development of appropriate data security controls

Constructive and collaborative

Other core principles include:

  • the need to be constructive and collaborative, working with regulators, government and existing airspace users
  • adoption at pace, with some valuable services only small steps away from safe operation
  • taking meaningful steps safely to build real experience and data quickly so industry and regulators can learn best

What is crucial to the plan is taking these principles of integrated airspace and applying them to real-world scenarios. This includes the practical steps needed to get flying, engage the industry and make the most of new opportunities.

The plan can be downloaded from the Innovate UK website

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) in Non-Penetrated Armored Vehicles

ABBS has joined forces with leading experts in the field of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) to investigate the various causes of TBI inside armored vehicles subject to a mine blast, even where the armor protects the vehicle itself and the impact of the blast does not penetrate the hull.


The US Department of Defense (DoD) has been tracking worldwide incidence of TBI in service men and women since 2000; over this period, DoD recorded 444,328 cases of TBI to August 2021, with a further 9,158 subsequent cases recorded in the first half of 2022.

Service members and Veterans are also at risk of brain injury from explosions experienced during combat or training exercises.  Even mild TBI cases can lead to serious long-term effects on thinking ability, memory, mood, and focus, along with physical symptoms.  While most people with mild TBI have symptoms that resolve within hours, days, or weeks, a minority may experience persistent symptoms that last for several months or longer.

Treatment typically includes a mix of cognitive, physical, speech, and occupational therapy, along with medication to control specific symptoms such as headaches or anxiety. More than 185,000 Veterans who use VA health care have been diagnosed with at least one TBI.  Whilst the majority of those TBIs were classified as mild, conditions stemming from TBI can range from headaches, irritability, and sleep disorders to memory problems, slower thinking, and depression.  These ailments can often become long-term health problems with detriment to service members’ health, social and family relationships and operational performance, and longer-term symptoms can go on to impair veterans’ employment, social relationships, and reintegration into the community.

Unfortunately, more than half of persons with TBI see a deterioration in their condition, even death, with five years of their injury diagnosis. Soldiers and occupants of vehicles subjected to underbelly blasts (but not penetrated) often still suffer TBI as a result of the blast.

Currently there is no understanding of the primary cause or causes of this form of TBI. Most research on blast threats to vehicles has focused on the obvious physical threats to the occupants which has resulted in the development of vehicles that can sustain blasts from large Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). But there have not been any detailed studies examining the more subtle threats inside vehicles after an explosion. Such subtle threats are often masked by the huge explosive forces, and in fact, current sensors ignore these threats as “background noise”.

Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Limited have therefore teamed up with leading TBI specialists to propose a research project to the DoD which aims to determine the primary cause(s) of TBI in a vehicle using computer simulations, scaled models, and experimental testing, with full scale testing and biological analysis to form part of the later stages of the research.

It is already accepted that the acceleration caused by an underbelly mine blast / IED can cause mild TBIs; and ASST has access to unique technologies which can eliminate that threat entirely. However, there are other factors which appear to be potential causes, and the interaction of those factors and how to best mitigate their impact is the key part of this project.

Part of this project will include the design of sensors that can accurately measure the pressure, noise, low frequency noise, and vibration inside the vehicle in order to determine the causes of TBI from un-penetrating explosive events and determine the reduction made when mitigation techniques are incorporated.

ABBS technologies will enable each of the potential causes of TBI to be isolated in order to determine their impact on TBI as part of this project.  They will do this by mitigating against each of the identified potential causes.

As a result, some or all of the ABBS technologies may then be mandated as a preventative measure on future armoured vehicles


Launch of Wefunder Pitch for Active Safety System Technologies Inc. (ASST)

Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Limited has now launched a Wefunder pitch for people to indicate their interest in investing in our new US operation, Active Safety System Technologies Inc. (ASST).  The link is:


We are using the ‘Testing the Waters’ facility on Wefunder in order to gauge the level of interest before setting the target raise for the round, which has to be declared on the Form C for the SEC. It is obligatory to add the following statement with this preliminary indicative ‘offer’:

“We are ‘testing the waters’ to gauge investor interest in an offering under Regulation Crowdfunding. No money or other consideration is being solicited. If sent, it will not be accepted. No offer to buy securities will be accepted. No part of the purchase price will be received until a Form C is filed and only through Wefunder’s platform. Any indication of interest involves no obligation or commitment of any kind.”

The purpose of setting up ASST is to provide a new vehicle in the USA to market both the armoured vehicle and the eVTOL technologies to the US and Canadian markets under the same company, hence the generic technology-orientated name rather than the previous Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems LLC which has now been closed.

Given that the US provides over 50% of the global market for both our armoured vehicle and eVTOL products we anticipate that interest from major global players in a buy-in or buy-out deal will either focus on ASST or stimulate interest in a full ABBS buy-out in due course, hence our focus now on developing the activities in the USA, which this planned funding round will support.

New Chairman – Brigadier (Ret’d) Ian Cameron-Mowat

Firstly many thanks to David Staveley who has stepped down from the ABBS Chairman role last week and resigned as Director for personal reasons, having been involved with ABBS since about 2010. Very fortuitously, the previous week we attended the Future Armoured Vehicle Survivability (FAVS) Conference in London and invited the Chairman of the conference, Brigadier (Ret’d) Ian Cameron-Mowat to act as consultant for us, so this was very rapidly up-graded to an invitation to act as Chairman for both the ABBS and the ASST Boards, which I am delighted to say he has accepted. Ian has vast experience of introducing new technology to the UK Army, including active protection systems, and has many contacts in the UK, USA and Europe that will be invaluable to us in the new phase of market development we have recently entered.

Amoured Vehicle Products

It may be the case that the recently stated US Army intention to find solutions to the threat from large IEDs, hence creating substantial ‘user-pull’ for the first time, has resulted in a specific approach to us from a major European defence industry player, with which discussions are scheduled to begin in January 2022.

If you look through the pitch on Wefunder you will see that there have been some exciting developments over the course of even the last few days.

  1. DARPA Tactical Technology Office (TTO) have issued a call for new technologies, titled “Redefining Possible”, which is exactly what our VGAM™ technology does in terms of protecting against large IED threats. The DARPA call specifically refers to ground mobility being critical to avoiding fatal attacks. We are now coordinating our approach to DARPA and the Pentagon Rapid Reaction Technology Office with our US Army CRADA manager to try to get a fully coordinated approach to funding the full development and certification of our VGAM technology. We also understand that the requirements team for a new US army vehicle has requested information on the funding and timescale required to get the VGAM system into production, so several pieces of the jigsaw puzzle appear to be coming together.So we are now planning a new campaign to promote the game-changing upgrade in tactical mobility that adding a fleet of highly IED-resistant vehicles fitted with the VGAM system would bring, meeting the stated mobility improvement objectives of both the DARPA TTO and the US Army, and get the message to the key high-level requirements personnel in the US, UK, and NATO military.
  2. Following a meeting at the recent FAVS Conference in London we have had an approach from a major player with a global footprint and a strong position in armoured vehicle protection systems. Our VGAM™ system would be an excellent fit with their product range. This long-awaited development could be a very interesting, and we plan formal discussions to commence in early 2022.
  3. The Technology Discovery Event that was scheduled for 4th November 2021 was postponed due to the Covid situation in the USA. It has not been re-scheduled yet, but in view of the long list of activities outlined above it may be a blessing in disguise as we will probably be very busy getting new projects under way early next year.
  4. ABBS is currently starting an extensive marketing campaign for the carbon fibre reinforced belly plate which has been developed over the past 18 months both under a DSTL/DASA contract and the Innovate UK funded project, with some of our own funding thrown in as well. The result is that we have demonstrated the possibility of dealing with a 4kg mine under a Toyota Hilux and protecting the occupants from serious injury, using blast seats from our Israeli supplier to protect against spinal injuries from the Global Acceleration. The design will also take 6kg without being penetrated, which is way beyond any previous known solution for such a light civilian vehicle as the Hilux.
  5. We are now proposing an extended development project with DSTL/DASA which would provide data on potential weight saving/improved peak deformation performance for UK military vehicles, where a 10% weight reduction would be regarded as ‘very interesting’. Our Hilux work suggests that up to a 30% weight reduction might be achieved, so if this proves correct we will have a very interesting product indeed, and it may be the case that the graphene technology could provide an additional potential benefit.
  6. The agreement with Graphene Composites to explore the potential benefits of incorporating graphene technology into the ABBS products is now in place and specific options are being discussed.

Following several years of slow-paced evaluation of ABBS’s VGAM technology by the US Army (due to their focus on RPG/missile interception and adoption of Rafael’s Trophy system) it seems likely that we will see the pace pick up; watch this space.

eVTOL Products

We are also beginning to make in-roads with our Safety Eco-System for eVTOL Aircraft. Manufacturers have begun to accept the need for stroking crashworthy seats and we have received the backing of two leading European eVTOL companies and a major flight control system supplier in our latest R&D proposal bid.

  1. Following on-site testing with a local operation developing autonomous vehicle sensor/control technology we have another new and important development in view for the eVTOL aircraft, especially when operating in the Urban Air Mobility (UAM) role.Whenever an emergency occurs in flight requiring an immediate emergency landing (such as a serious bird strike, which is going to be a big issue for these aircraft in the UAM role, or a battery fire) the first requirement for the pilot is to find an emergency landing site. The concept for our system is to use the autonomous road vehicle technology to look down from the eVTOL and continuously monitor potential emergency landing sites under the flight path.Running this idea past several major eVTOL industry players (designers, flight control system suppliers, and regulators) all were unanimous in endorsing the concept both designers and flight control system suppliers wanting to be involved in the project in an advisory capacity and keeping a view on progress and potentially incorporating the system into their aircraft. This is an excellent response and we have applied for a £0.75m collaborative R&D grant from Innovate UK to develop the technology. With the response we have from both industry players and aviation regulators, who all noted that the system will be essential when eVTOL’s become fully autonomous (i.e. flying without a pilot) we will be very disappointed if this grant application is not accepted.
  2. Furthermore, at the Future Armoured Vehicle Survivability Conference two weeks ago it was stated that Denial of Service attacks are a very serious issue and many systems in armoured vehicles, not just location, rely on the GPS signal, which is very easy to disrupt or spoof. The system described above for the eVTOLs is very easily adaptable to provide a solution by matching the current view from above the vehicle with previously available views. The concept was run past the DSTL expert who raised the issue at the conference, who readily acknowledged that there was no reason this would not work to provide the missing location/navigation data. Hence we are also applying to DSTL/DASA for an R&D grant, to develop this system for them.
  3. Our Israeli partner in the development of crashworthy seats for the eVTOL aircraft is close to launching them in the market having nearly completed the design work, and they have asked us to start to push the product to such as Vertical Aerospace in the UK and Volocopter in Germany, and we will do the same in the USA through ASR.We have also established an influential position in the EUROCAE/EASA activity designed to provide a new standard for crashworthy seats for eVTOLs. We instigated the formation of this Working Group at EUROCAE but a while ago the work was delegated to a US-based SAE Aircraft Seat committee which was already working on the issue. After a few meetings the Chairman decided that defining a new standard for stroking crashworthy/Energy Absorbing (EA) seats was too complex to define, so they would delete that element from the new draft standard.We believe that this would mean that a great opportunity to improve occupant safety in eVTOLs was going to be missed, with potentially serious consequences for the industry in the long term. This was also the opinion of a rotorcraft seat expert at Bell in Canada, who stated that currently the stroking seats often used in helicopters did not protect their occupants from spinal injuries. Currently stroking seats only work for mid-range occupant weights, with children, light people, and heavy people not being protected at all.Given the position of the regulators and the divergent priorities of the eVTOL designers it will be impossible to get a new stroking seat standard adopted any time soon, but we volunteered to develop a proposal for an Aerospace Recommended Practice (ARP) and were given free rein by the committee Chairman to pursue an industry consensus on the issue. So we are now leading what is effectively a sub-committee with support from the Bell Canada seat expert and our Israeli seat supplier, plus Safran Seats (a current major supplier to the industry).

    Now while the eVTOL designers are not obliged to follow an Aerospace Recommended Practice it is quite possible that the insurers may drive the situation indue course, either imposing very high premiums or refusing insurance at all if the ARP is not followed. This and public pressure, and maybe the city authorities who have to deal with the consequences of any UAM accidents could well be the final arbiters of what develops here, irrespective of the attitude of the regulators.

Moving Forward

As you can see, whilst there remains interest in all of our products globally, the US is the most important single market in the move towards certification and sales of our rocket-based solutions. Once on a defined, funded path to certification in the US, then this will support ABBS marketing activities for the same products to the rest of the world.

Airborne platforms for sustainment & replenishment- Emergency Descent Arrest System (EDAS)

ABBS have issued a response to the US Rapid Reaction Technology Office’s (RRTO) RFI relating to Thunderstorm for Contested Logistics.

This outlines how the Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Limited Emergency Descent Arrest System (EDAS) can be used to provide a controlled landing in essentially all circumstances for airborne platforms for sustainment and replenishment

Technology Description:

The delivery of cargo or personnel to the battlefield by autonomous VTOL rotorcraft is a new and fast evolving alternative to delivery by piloted helicopters or aircraft parachute-drops.  New electric battery multi-rotor VTOL (eVTOL) aircraft being developed for Urban Air Mobility (UAM) and AAM (Advanced Air Mobility) markets demonstrate what is possible. Novel propulsion & lift power architectures utilising hydrogen fuel-cells or micro-turbines, can extend range and payload capability over lithium-ion batteries, making VTOL cargo delivery a feasible option for both civil & military users.

With autonomous capability such aircraft can deliver higher front-line supply payloads without risking aircrew because they are unmanned. Even so, kinetic and/or electronic-attack threats are ever present in active theatre, and an uncontrolled descent and/or crash landing pose a threat to the security of both cargo and any personnel aboard the aircraft.  eVTOL aircraft cannot glide or autorotate to safety and it is clear that an autonomous safety system is required to provide a soft landing. Ballistic Parachute Recovery Systems are available and currently used in civilian light-aircraft having saved many lives over the last 20 years.  These systems comprise a whole-aircraft parachute (launched by rocket motor); but, because the parachute is sized to provide an 8–10msec-1 descent rate, require forward movement and/or a significant time during vertical descent to fully open & become effective: equating to aircraft altitude loss or safety gap between c.300 and 1,000ft before the 8–10msec-1 design descent rate is achieved.

To address the Safety Gap, retro-rocket effectors incorporated into the system can provide a controlled landing in essentially all circumstances. The retrorockets can be activated within 15m of the ground and the aircraft still soft land, meaning the aircraft can descend rapidly from height and minimise the time it is vulnerable to attack.  Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Ltd. (ABBS), working with Aviation Safety Resources LLC (ASR) and Active Safety System Technologies LLC in the USA, are developing a system based on the same combination of parachutes and retrorockets, designed specifically for eVTOL aircraft types, and it is now proposed that the system should be considered for the autonomous cargo delivery aircraft being evaluated by the US Army for logistics and casualty-evacuation roles.

For more details about Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Emergency Descent Arrest System, please contact us using the form below.

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    Image shows how following a VTOL aircraft emergency incident (1), the descent is arrested using a parachute canopy (2) and a retro-rocket effector is used to create a soft landing (3)

    Ground Distribution Platform survivability - Vehicle Active Floor System (VAFS™)

    ABBS have issued a response to the US Rapid Reaction Technology Office’s (RRTO) RFI relating to Thunderstorm for Contested Logistics.

    This outlines how the Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Limited Vehicle Active Floor System (VAFS™) System for Ground Vehicle protection can be used to improve the survivability of any ground distribution platform.

    Technology Description:

    Land mines and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) continue to endanger military personnel and civilians, in active & legacy theatres of operation, on a worldwide basis.  Vehicles are susceptible to penetration & shock effects from under-body blast, and crew often suffer lower-limb injuries resulting from floor shock and from rapid vehicle belly-plate and floor deformation.  Vehicle up-armouring can mitigate these effects, but with penalties of increased weight, profile, and loss of maneuverability.  Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Ltd. (ABBS) has developed and demonstrated Vehicle Active Floor System (VAFS) technology, to mitigate the floor shock effects of under-body blast (UBB) and prevent injury to any vehicle occupants’ lower limbs in contact with the floor.

    Light ground vehicle, (1) pre- and (3) post-exposure to a 6kg (TE) buried mine blast (2) with ABBS Active Floor Effector (4) next to blast seat in crew compartment

    ABBS’s solution uses energetic effectors connected to the vehicle floor plate that, following a UBB event deliver a fast, counter-acting impulse within milli-second blast timescales moving the floor down and reducing the transmission of shock loading to the lower limbs and feet of the vehicles’ occupants;  following VAFS activation, the floor panel then simply resets.

    The technology has the added advantage of extending the capability of energy-absorbing seat systems.  The ABBS VAFS system concept is demonstrated in full-scale vehicle rig firings in the UK.  Integration and validation of this novel system technology can now deliver efficient mitigation of UBB threats to multiple classes of ground vehicle, reducing occupant casualties and injuries whilst preserving vehicle mobility and efficiency, strengthening the resilience and survivability of Ground Distribution Platforms.

    Operating Concept of ABBS Vehicle Active Floor System (VAFS):  a protected vehicle (1) subjected to an under-body blast (UBB) threat, resulting in (2) the fast actuation of floor effector countermeasures on the vehicle floor to counter UBB-driven floor shock loading

    For more details about Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems range of Ground Vehicle Protection products, please contact us using the form below.

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      Ground Distribution Platform survivability - Vehicle Global Acceleration Mitigation (VGAM™)

      ABBS have issued a response to the US Rapid Reaction Technology Office’s (RRTO) RFI relating to Thunderstorm for Contested Logistics.

      This outlines how the Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Limited Vehicle Global Acceleration Mitigation (VGAM™) System for Ground Vehicle protection can be used to improve the survivability of any ground distribution platform.

      Technology Description:

      Land mines and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) continue to endanger military personnel and civilians, in active & legacy theatres of operation, worldwide.  Vehicles are susceptible to penetration & shock effects from under-body blast, and being thrown vertically or over-turned by blast gases & ejecta, with the vehicle global acceleration exceeding the capacity of blast seats and resulting in crew injuries & fatalities.  Vehicle up-armouring can mitigate these effects, but with considerable added weight & profile, and subsequent loss of maneuverability.  Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Ltd. (ABBS) has developed Vehicle Global Acceleration Mitigation (VGAM) technology, to mitigate the effects of under-body blast (UBB).  The rapid application of VGAM counter-impulse (downforce) to the protected vehicle dramatically reduces its jump height in response to a UBB event.

      ABBS Linear Rocket Motor (LRM) effectors (1) stabilizing a Snatch Land-Rover light ground vehicle (2,3) with <0.5 metre jump height over a 6kg(TE) buried mine blast (4)

      ABBS’s solution uses rocket-motor effectors on the upper vehicle surfaces to deliver a fast, counter-acting impulse within milli-second blast timescales to counteract UBB global acceleration taking the vehicle ‘weight’ up to c.1,000tons for just the 30-100ms required to counteract the mine/IED impulse loads;  mitigating:

      1. global acceleration and
      2. subsequent rollover and/or slam-down of the vehicle, and keeping occupant loading within the capability (c.9msec-1) of energy-absorbing seat systems.

      Solid-propellant rocket motor effectors provide low-mass, high-speed delivery of counter-measure impulse, with low Insensitive Munition (IM) signature when combined with ABBS’s electronic safety, arming & ignition sub-system.  The ABBS VGAM system concept is demonstrated in full-scale vehicle rig firings in the US & the UK.  Integration and validation of this novel system technology can now mitigate UBB global-acceleration threats to multiple classes of ground vehicle, reducing occupant casualties & injuries whilst preserving vehicle mobility and efficiency, strengthening the resilience & survivability of Ground Distribution Platforms.

      Operating Concept of ABBS Vehicle Global Acceleration Mitigation (VGAM) system:  a protected vehicle (1) subjected to an under-body blast (UBB) threat, resulting in (2) the fast actuation of  linear rocket motor (LRM) countermeasures on the vehicle roof to counter UBB-driven global acceleration

      For more details about Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems range of Ground Vehicle Protection products, please contact us using the form below.

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        Ground Distribution Platform survivability - Shockwave Mitigating, Energy Absorbing Sandwich Belly Plates for Land Vehicle protection

        ABBS have issued a response to the US Rapid Reaction Technology Office’s (RRTO) RFI relating to Thunderstorm for Contested Logistics.

        This outlines how the Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Limited Energy Absorbing Sandwich Belly Plate for Land Vehicle protection (CRBP) can be used to improve the survivability of any ground distribution platform.

        Technology Description:

        Landmines and Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) present a real and present threat to land vehicles driven both in active and legacy theatres of operation. In unarmoured or lightly armoured vehicles, the underbody blast shockwave ruptures the floor and the impulse, high-pressure gas, reflected pressure and associated ejecta cause serious and fatal injuries to the crew. For armoured vehicles, the vehicle floor can deflect upwards at high-speed due to the shockwave or the protective belly plate hitting it sending an impulse through the floor which fractures any lower limbs of crew members that are in contact with it. Deformation of the vehicle belly-plate has one further consequence in that the upward pressure from the blast is somewhat contained and contributes to vertical Global Acceleration of the vehicle.

        The use of a “V” shaped belly plate to help deflect the blast and increase the stiffness of the design to prevent it deforming upwards and impacting the vehicle floor has become standard in armoured vehicle design. The element of increased stiffness is important in spreading the blast loads along the belly plate and minimising deformation, but the very rigid design attached directly to the main vehicle structure also ensures that shock transmission into the vehicle is maximised with potentially negative effects on the crew and vehicle equipment

        Furthermore, the V design increases the centres of mass of the vehicle leading to reduced manoeuvrability and increasing vulnerability to rollover when subjected to side blasts or when driven on sloping or unstable ground.

        ABBS’s solution is a new design based on a flat sandwich structure which ensures that the whole voume of the belly plate is involved in absorbing energy, reducing local deformation levels and and enabling fitting the design to lightweight commercial vehicles with low ground clearance whilst avoiding the negative effects of raised centre of mass on military types. The overall structure is not only lighter than a standard armoured steel belly plate, but also flat, reducing the overall vehicle centre-of-gravity and remains substantially flat when subjected to blast. This means that gasses from the blast can easily escape from under the vehicle and floor intrusion into the cabin is minimised.

        Main Benefits:

        • Can be fitted to lightweight commercial vehicles with low ground clearance
        • Up to 40% lighter than a standard armoured steel belly plate for the same local deformation level.
        • Space between the belly plate and the vehicle floor can be reduced due to lower local deformation.1

        The technology has been demonstrated in full scale vehicle firings in the UK:

        • a Snatch Land Rover subjected to a 6kg mine.
        • a Toyota Hilux™ tested with a 4kg mine fully to the Dstl/WP53308 1.0 standard, equivalent to NATO AEP-55 STANAG 4569.

        The technology is judged to be at TRL6.

        Further R&D is required to conduct extensive testing and fully optimise the design. We believe that the composite belly plate will be especially advantageous for lightweight highly maneuverable special forces vehicles that are dropped into theatre by helicopter.

        For more details about Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems range of Land Vehicle Protection products, please contact us using the form below.

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          Mutual Cooperation Agreement with US Based Aviation Safety Resources

          Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Limited (ABBS), a global leader in protection solutions for the aviation and Advanced/Urban Air Mobility (AAM/UAM) markets today announced a strategic alliance agreement with US based Aviation Safety Resources, Inc., (ASR) an  innovative company that designs, tests and produces Aircraft Emergency Parachute Recovery Systems (AEPRS). The agreement launches a joint effort to further develop the next generation of AEPRS and reduce the costs which both ABBS and ASR would otherwise have to invest independently. ASR will benefit from the in-depth knowledge and world-leading rocket and initiation systems expertise within the extended ABBS operation, which has been developed by previous work on rocket motors used in armored vehicle mine protection systems. Both parties remain independently owned and operated.

          “We are pleased to join forces with ASR, who share our concern about the challenges associated with vehicle recovery in a vertical take-off or landing configuration with no forward speed,” commented Roger Sloman, ABBS CEO. He continued, “There is a clear 300-foot safety gap for an AAM aircraft where current standard ballistically deployed recovery systems are completely ineffective during the VTOL phase of flight. The only feasible solution to the problem is to incorporate retrorockets with the rapid deployment parachutes being produced by ASR.”

          ABBS, who were recently invited by the Pentagon Rapid Reaction Technology Office to submit projects based on its latest successful tests of patented Linear Rocket Motors (LRM) with the US army, will provide the rocket motors, sensors, control units, and initiation systems to ASR.

          ASR president and CEO Larry Williams said, “This technology will be especially applicable to the rapidly developing eVTOL aircraft intended for use in the Advanced Air Mobility role, as well as many other personal and utility purposes. The collaboration with ABBS will also greatly reduce the timescale for the full development of these systems, ensuring that the required products are ready as the eVTOL industry recognizes the need for an advanced AEPRS on their aircraft.”

          Both ASR and ABBS have been working over the last few years to develop a recovery solution specifically for VTOL aircraft and is on pace to deliver fully developed, certified systems and production facilities available to meet the demand.

          Both companies will market and provide technical support for the systems in service as required.

          This is a massively important development for both ABBS and ASR, providing a rapid and cost-effective route to exploiting this huge market opportunity which will develop over the next few years.

          For more information, please visit:



          Rich Mellor

          +44 7944 491244 (Mobile)

          +44 1782 398143



          Larry Williams

          651-428-0638 (Mobile)

          606-212-2700 ext. 508 (Office)



          About ABBS

          Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems Ltd, based in Derbyshire, UK, has designed a remarkable system for armoured vehicles which can counteract the huge forces generated by underbelly mines and IED’s, preventing the vehicle being blasted into the air and thus avoiding the potentially disabling spinal acceleration injuries that the crew might otherwise sustain. The system uses specially developed leading edge SAFE/ARM/ control/initiation systems and immensely powerful patented Linear Rocket Motor (LRM™) designs which can deliver all their impulse in less than 100milliseconds to make the vehicles ‘weigh’ many hundreds of tons for just the brief period that the mine blast forces    are acting on the vehicle. ABBS is currently working with the US Army to mature the system for armoured vehicles, and now, working with ASR, similar technology will be used in the design of a system using retrorockets to prevent eVTOL aircraft crashing when emergencies occur. A controlled landing from which all the occupants can walk away in essentially all emergency circumstances is the target for our collaboration. For more information, please visit www.evtol-safety.com

          About Aviation Safety Resources

          Aviation Safety Resources, Inc., based in Nicholasville, Ky., designs, tests, and produces whole aircraft emergency recovery parachute systems designed to safely bring down the entire aircraft and its occupants in the event of an in-air emergency. Staffed by a team of experienced aviation professionals, ASR is the first to offer the next generation of whole- aircraft recovery systems and the first system specifically designed for the vertical take- off and landing (VTOL) vehicles of Advanced/Urban Air Mobility (A/UAM). For more information, please visit www.aviationsafetyresources.com

          Meet ABBS at the Future Armoured Vehicles Survivability Conference 2021

          Advanced Blast & Ballistic Systems will attending the 6th annual Future Armoured Vehicles Survivability Conference and Active Protection Systems Focus Day (#FAVSurvivability) in London between the 15th – 17th November 2021.

          This conference is organised by @SMIgroupdefence and is the only armoured vehicle conference dedicated to the area of survivability.  The event aims to bring together programme managers, capability directors, commanders from the military, senior engineers, chief scientists and platform managers from leading solution providers to discuss what nations are doing to protect their armoured vehicles and personnel.

          ABBS will also take part in the Active Protection Systems Focus Day on 15th November 2021 which will provide detailed and exclusive insight into how leading nations are integrating APS into their existing vehicle fleet and will look at a range of topics, including our own VGAM™ system and how it can be used as an active countermeasure against mines and IEDs.

          Unlike any other event, the survivability conference is a meeting for the international armoured vehicle community designed around a series of focused discussions on the strategies and technologies being adopted to enhance crew and platform survivability. As seen in recent operations, threats to the vehicle are increasing in both scope and size. Traditional lightly armed combatants now have access to an increasing array of lethal anti-armour capabilities. With the continued proliferation of advanced anti-tank weaponry around the world, and as armed forces pivot to addressing near-peer adversaries, armored vehicle survivability remains as important as it ever has been.