IDET Confirmed that Czech Companies are Interesting for Foreign Partners
The IDET 2019 International Defence and Security Technologies Fair (International Defence and Security Technologies), which is traditionally held at Brno Exhibition Centre every second year, ended last Friday. Our editorial office has definitely not missed this military event and we offer you the most interesting insights below.
The presentation of combat vehicles of all four companies that apply for a tender to purchase 210 caterpillar combat vehicles of the infantry for the Armed Forces of the Czech Republic was probably the biggest ‘corker’ at the IDET Trade Fair.
The company GDELS exhibited the BVP ASCOD 42 with two tower versions from the Israeli company ELBIT. The unmanned tower UT-30 Mk2 was installed directly on the vehicle. The manned tower version MT-30 Mk2 was exhibited next to the vehicle. Either of them was equipped with the main gun Mk44 Bushmaster II, calibre 30 mm. Both the versions can be easily fitted to the vehicles while maintaining the same number of crew members and transported squad, i.e. three plus eight. The machine gun of the
calibre 7.62 mm is an additional weapon. Moreover, a retractable launching device for two Spike guided anti-tank missiles was hidden in the towers.
In connection with the production possibilities of the Excalibur Army company, which belongs to the CSG holding (Czechoslovak Group a.s.), another significant event took place. The representatives of the company from Šternberg signed a Memorandum of Understanding on possible cooperation regarding the production of combat towers for infantry combat vehicles with the representatives of the above-mentioned Israeli company Elbit, which confirmed the fact that our companies are interesting for foreign partners. Let us mention the fact that the company GDELS signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement with the Czech CSG holding at the previous IDET in 2017.
The ASCOD towers were equipped with two independent targeting and observation optoelectronic systems for gunmen and commanders, both having control consoles and multifunctional displays for observation of the surrounding and aiming of weapons available. Furthermore, the commander and gunman of the unmanned tower version also have classic optical visors allowing a forward view and view to both sides that are integrated into the fixed base (adapter), by means of which the tower is placed on the vehicle hull. Regarding the manned tower the optical visors were embedded into the ceiling hatches. It is possible to equip the combat tower with a remote controlled weapon station with a machine gun or grenade launcher.
The BVP ASCOD 42 also received an active Iron Fist defensive system from the Israeli company IMI. Its most visible features are two rotary throwers at the rear of the tower. In cooperation with the Elbit company, the GDELS engineers have equipped the vehicle with the Iron Vision system, which is a 360-degree panoramic visual system that allows the crew to monitor the surroundings of the vehicles and any other activity around in real time.
The company BAE Systems exhibited two versions of the CV90 chassis at the IDET, but neither of them in the BVP configuration. The CV90 recovery vehicle and CV90 K Mjölner self-propelled mortar with a pair of mortars of the calibre 120 mm could have been seen. Currently, the fifth generation of the CV90 with Mk IV specification is being offered. The initial form had a maximum weight of 23 tons, but the current one has already 37 tons. The vehicle normally carries a tower with a crew, which contains a cannon of the calibre 30, 35 or 40 mm in different countries. However, it is possible to use the unmanned tower, alternatively the tower with a tank cannon of the calibre 105 or 120 mm.
The CV90 vehicles experienced the real deployment in Liberia and Afghanistan where these machines became the targets of explosions of improvised explosive devices (IED) in several cases. In the Czech Republic, the BAE Systems company has already signed a Cooperation Agreement with the state-owned company VOP CZ, as well as with Meopta and Pramacom-HT companies.
One of the latest candidates of the tender is the Lynx vehicle, which is already offered by the German company Rheinmetall. The battleship was basically created as a cheaper alternative to the expensive
Puma type. Simply put, it is a combination of Marder’s design and some technologies of the Puma project. Almost nothing has been known about the development of this machine. The first Lynx KF31 prototype was introduced as a great surprise in 2016.
Specific information on the vehicle resilience is missing (the manufacturer specifies general ballistic resilience to ‘medium-calibre cannons’). It is only known that it has modular armour. The Lynx KF31 is equipped with the Lance tower, where the 30 mm calibre cannon and unusual 7.62 mm three-barrel machine gun are placed. The KF41 version has the Lance 2.0 tower with 35 mm cannon. These towers have a crew as a standard, but it can be remotely controlled if needed.
The German Puma vehicle, which is the last of the applicants for the military contract on combat vehicles for the Armed Forces of the Czech Republic, was born following the several programmes with the aim to replace the Marder Battleship. The design has been jointly developed by Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall Landysysteme companies, which created the PSM company (Project System Management) because of this. The Puma is now being offered in the world market under its heading.
The Puma framework type is characterized mainly by its high resilience, which is also reflected by modular armour; the Puma weighs 31.5 tons in the basic form, with additional armour it has 43 tons. An important element of the design is the tower without a crew which carries a 30 mm calibre cannon and a 5.56 mm calibre machine gun. Much is said about the level of electronics which is supposed to increase significantly the ability of a vehicle to operate effectively on a modern battlefield, nevertheless, it is also a source of problems.
The legendary multi-purpose helicopter Sikorsky, which is commercially operated only by the CSG holding outside the U.S.A., has been seen today. The machine is a part of the training centre SLOVAK TRAINING ACADEMY (STA) in Košice, which was built for more than 25 million USD without the financial contribution of State aid, and the CSG holding companies have been constantly investing in it. Currently, they mainly focus on the helicopter technology investment and theoretical training facilities to have sufficient training capacity in the centre. The aircraft fleet centre consists of 16 helicopters, the majority of them have been of American origin.
Our company Česká Zbrojovka was traditionally represented at the IDET where it, for instance, introduced its guns CZ BREN 2 BR, CZ BREN 2, CZ SCORPION EVO A1, various versions of pistols of the CZ P-10 series and many others. The products of our arms factory are well-known and popular not only in the Czech Republic, but also abroad, including the U.S.A. As part of its expansion in the United States, the Česká Zbrojovka has created a new subsidiary of the CZ-USA holding that is now ready to build headquarters for its field of competence in North America.
The new complex is to be built in the Little Rock town in Arkansas in America. The total cost of building the complex should be no more than 90 million dollars (more than 2 billion CZK). In the end, almost six hundred employees should find a job here.