- Ceradyne BULL
The Ceradyne BULL is an
armored personnel carrierwith a v-shaped hull designed in a combined effort between Ceradyne, Ideal Innovations Inc (I-3), and Oshkoshin response to the MRAP II competition. The name Ceradyne Bull is a misnomer; "The Bull" is actually a trade-mark of Ideal Innovations, Inc. (I-3).
The MRAP II competition was announced in 2007 when it became clear that
explosively formed penetrator(EFP) type of roadside bombattacks were increasing in Iraq and the current generation MRAP vehicles couldn't stop all of them without add-on armor kits. In 2005 Ideal Innovations' President, Robert Kocher, had worked with the U.S. Army Research Laboratoryto find an EFP solution, patented it, and then found Ceradyne as a partner in 2006 to produce an armored cab out of it. The U.S. Army'sJoint Manufacturing and Technology Center at the Rock Island Arsenalprovides the EFP-stopping outer layers of the armor. Kocher had previously been involved in the 1991-93 development of the up-armored Humvee and was part of the team that developed the boron carbidearmor now used in Interceptor body armorvests that Ceradyne produces. [ [http://www.defenseindustrydaily.com/2007/06/protection-against-efp-mines-ceradyne-i3-say-bull/index.php Defense Industry Daily: I Say Bull] ]
In 2007 Oshkosh was selected to provide it's
Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement(MTVR) chassis, with their TAK-4® independent suspensionsystem and Commercial Off the Shelf (COTS) computer hardware, for the vehicles I3 and Ceradyne intended to enter in the MRAP II competition. [ [http://www.defense-update.com/newscast/0707/news/270707_bull_team.htm Oshkosh, Ceradyne and I3 Team up to Position the Bull for MRAP ] ] Two prototypes were made within 50 days. Team Bull members at Ceradyne, together with almost three dozen employees from I3 and Oshkosh, immediately began working round-the-clock shifts. Engineers rarely left the site, with team members instead grabbing a couple of hours of sleep outside in their cars for refreshment. [ [http://www.thestreet.com/story/10398503/2/how-ceradynes-bull-trampled-expectations.html Thestreet.com: How Ceradyne's 'Bull' Trampled Expectations] ] A six person version and a ten person version were delivered to the Aberdeen Proving Groundsfor testing.
The EFP simulations were so successful that the military quickly adapted the armor into the
Frag kit 6armor upgrade kits for the Humvee and other MRAP vehicles. Senators Carl Levin(D-Mich) and Joseph Biden(D-Del) took up Bull’s cause. Levin wrote a letter to Defense Secretary Gates promoting the vehicle and Biden asked, during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee event, why the military hadn’t ordered the vehicle. [ [http://warisboring.com/?p=714 War is Boring: New MRAPs to Resist Insurgent Super-bombs ] ] After testing the initial two prototypes, the military awarded the partnership a $18.1 million contract to produce six more Bull vehicles of the six person variant by the first quarter of 2008 for further evaluation. While eight vehicles entered the MRAP II competition, The Bull was one of only two vehicles to receive a contract from it. The other was the BAE Caiman.
It has been reported that the complete vehicle weighs around 40,000 lbs and costs about $500,000 (three times more than a
Humvee). [http://www.defenseindustrydaily.com/2007/06/protection-against-efp-mines-ceradyne-i3-say-bull/index.php] The Bull prototypes had no side doors, a requirement of the MRAP II competition [ [http://subloviate.blogspot.com/2008/03/minor-mystery-for-mrap-ii.html Subloviate: Minor Mystery for MRAP II] ] , and no gun ports either. Doors and gun ports could be added in the final production model.
See a picture of the The Bull [http://www.idealinnovations.com/images/bull%20image.jpghere.]
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