The Challenger 2 tank has had its desert capability tested in harsh conditions in Oman (Picture: British Army).
Army

Challenger 2 Tanks Have Their Desert Capability Tested In 'Harsh' Conditions

The tank crews have been using experimental tactics while working across long distances in soaring temperatures. 

The Challenger 2 tank has had its desert capability tested in harsh conditions in Oman (Picture: British Army).

The Challenger 2's desert capability has been tested in 'harsh' conditions in Oman (Picture: British Army).

Challenger 2 tanks have had their desert capability put to the test in Oman alongside Warrior infantry fighting vehicles. 

The Royal Tank Regiment, along with supporting units, deployed an armoured battlegroup to the Ras Madrakah training area.

As part of Exercise Khanjar Oman 19, Challenger 2 tank crews have been using experimental tactics while working across long distances in soaring temperatures. 

Members from 1 Armoured Infantry Brigade have been working alongside the Royal Army of Oman to ensure they are also ready for extreme conditions.

Throughout the exercise, Command Troop have been establishing and maintaining radio communications from equipment in the middle of the desert.

Members from 1 Armoured Infantry Brigade have been working alongside Omani Army (Picture: British Army).
Members from 1 Armoured Infantry Brigade have been working alongside Omani Army (Picture: British Army).

The training area brings up plenty of challenges for troops, as it is larger than both Salisbury Plain and the British Army Training Unit Suffield in Canada.

Lance Corporal Smith, deployed as a member of the Opposing Force (OpFor) on Warrior infantry fighting vehicles, said: “I've really enjoyed working with the infantry.

"They do things in a very different way and it provides a new perspective.

"There has been a strong competitive element with a friendly rivalry between us and the exercising troops.”

Trooper Foley said: "The exercise has developed my skills using communications equipment.

"Vehicle husbandry has been really important on this exercise, as the conditions are harsh.”

Soldiers from 659 Squadron, 1 Army Air Corps, have also provided Wildcat helicopters for the exercise.

They have been used in reconnaissance and medical evacuation roles, as well as honing their ability to operate in all environments.

The UK recently agreed to develop capabilities and promote regional stability with Oman after signing a Joint Defence Agreement

Gavin Williamson with Oman's Badr Bin Saud Bin Harib Al Busaidi
Gavin Williamson signed the Joint Defence Agreement in Oman in February (Picture: MOD).

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson hailed the agreement a "historic landmark". 

The signing followed the culmination of Exercise Saif Sareea 3 between the two countries in November 2018. 

It was the largest exercise of its kind for 15 years. 5,500 troops travelled to Oman as part of the exercise, testing their land, air and sea capabilities.