In the footsteps of the exhibition Eurosatory 2016: trends in the development of armored vehicles. Part of 2


The Italian army launched the Centuro II program to replace armored vehicles with an 105-mm rifled gun with a new machine with better protection, armed with an 120-mm gun.

The 25-th anniversary of the beginning of operation of the first original Centauro cars is approaching, and since the draft requirements for the 80xXNNMX armored car were issued at the beginning of the 8-s, great changes have occurred in the operational scenario. In this regard, the Italian army and the consortium Consorzio Iveco Oto Melara (CIO) began to work together on a new machine with a larger caliber cannon. One of the main areas of improvement was protection, especially the protection of the bottom, for example, from mines and IEDs (improvised explosive devices); when designing the original Centatiro, this was not paid enough attention to operational considerations. Another trend was to increase firepower: since the Italian army was armed only with the main Ariete battle tank with an 8-mm smoothbore gun, the army took into account issues of uniformity, as well as combat effectiveness. The draft document was published in October 120, and the final requirements were issued in December 2010. Two contracts were signed, one for the development of a new engine and one for the development and production of a prototype, which is known as the Nuova Blindo Centauro (Centauro new armored vehicle), although it is often called Centauro II in industrial circles.

In the requirements, depending on the configuration, the combat weight is defined approximately in 30 tons, and when installing the armor set “A” the specific power is defined in 24 hp / t. It was clear that the power of the six-cylinder engine of the original Centauro 520 horsepower, also mounted on the Freccia 8x8 infantry combat vehicle, was insufficient. In this regard, the contract provided for a modification for military purposes of the existing eight-cylinder engine Iveco Vector 8V, used in the railway and energy sectors. The engine complies with the Euro 3 standard, according to which it can be dual-fuel (diesel / petrol) without the need to change the electronic settings. The “militarization” process involved upgrading the injection system to get a dual-fuel engine, upgrading lubrication and cooling systems, which are also responsible for cooling the transmission, installing the generator on the 560 Amp and additional power take-off shafts. As for the transmission, here the choice fell on the ZF Ecomat 7HP902 with seven forward gears and one rear; This system is well known to Iveco DV because it is installed on Astra 8x8 trucks. The new generation engine has significantly more power, which saved 250 kg compared to the power unit of the previous version of Centauro; The new engine has power 720 hp, and the old one at 180 hp less. The car has three battery compartments (two on the left and one on the right), each of which has two batteries; two batteries are designed to start the engine and four for powering the onboard equipment. CIO has chosen lithium-ion batteries, which have much more charge cycles and give a constant current of 24 Volt, which is 30% more compared to lead batteries. The first two axles remained manageable, the fourth axle steering is activated only at low speeds, providing a turning radius of less than 18 meters. Hydraulic steering allows you to cope with the greater mass of the machine, but on the new model, in order to save space, the “one-and-a-half steering circuit” scheme was adopted, which made it possible to remove one cylinder. The Michelin 14.00R20 XZL / XML wheels are the same as those of the entire Centauro family, they have VFI-resistant inserts and are connected to a tire pressure control system.

Middle plan of the tower Centauro II. It is equipped with a Hitrole Light DUBM (pictured without weapons) and a circular antenna jamming system.

In terms of protection levels, the manufacturer does not give specific numbers, it is only known that the set “A” is added to the main steel case, but the set “B” is also available. In order to save mass, research was conducted for each part of the hull, and as a result, a total of seven types of ballistic panels were developed for each of the kits. The hull booking kits were developed entirely by Iveco DV engineers. With some modifications in the Centauro II, the typical “H” drive circuit was preserved (the power flow from the engine is divided into two parallel flows along the sides of the machine). At the rear, the roof is slightly raised, which made it possible to obtain more space for integrating the underbody protection system against mines and IEDs. The hull is divided into three main parts, the front with the engine, the central empty for the installation of the tower and the rear for a set of ammunition. For the driver, located in front of the left, the concern CIO offers the possibility of driving on displays; The machine is equipped with four day / night cameras and three cameras for low light levels. The main day / night camera of the driver is installed on the front front sheet and allows you to see the edge of the sheet to estimate the distance to objects. Two of the same cameras installed on the sides of the Centauro II and directed forward and one camera installed in the stern. One camera for low light is installed in the front of the car and the other two are installed on the rear-view mirrors and are directed forward. Images from these cameras, as well as images from other onboard sensors, can be displayed on three screens, which also display the operating parameters and data of the onboard monitoring and diagnostics system. A backup gyro is installed. Evaluation of the driver’s vision system will begin in the 4 quarter of the 2016 year.

In the footsteps of the exhibition Eurosatory 2016: trends in the development of armored vehicles. Part of 2

Main dimensions of ACS Centauro II

As already mentioned, the rear of the chassis is designed to accommodate the main gun ammunition. Ammunition is loaded through the aft door, two revolving magazines with 9 and 10 shells, respectively, are placed on each side of the aisle. An armored bulkhead with a central door seals the ammunition compartment in a hermetic manner from the central part of the hull; shots are served through two armored hatches. According to the calculations, the bulkhead provides protection for the tower’s crew against the simultaneous ignition of three conventional projectiles (non-inert). In case of an emergency, the central passage can also be used as a crew emergency exit.

Centauro prototype with an 120-mm cannon at the Rheinmetall Unterlus test site during tests conducted to verify compatibility with all types of 120-mm ammunition

More 12 120-mm shells are placed in the back of the tower; Thus, the gunner-gunner has at its disposal a 31 projectile. The Centauro II tower was designed by Finmeccanica Defense Systems (formerly Oto Melara). The habitable tower compartment is made of a lightweight ballistic alloy, to which protection sets of levels “A” and “B” can be added; the back part is entirely made of composite material. The volume where the ammunition is placed is designed so that, due to the special-shaped surfaces, any combustion products are removed from it, while a separate fire / anti-explosion system in an emergency reduces the temperature inside the compartment and prevents the ammunition from igniting. The rotating magazine for six shells is located in the aft compartment of the turret, its ammunition is ready to be fired and is fed into the charging chamber; the shooter selects the appropriate projectile using the fire control system, the drum is rotated, feeding the projectile to a side-shift using the electric flap. The breeder opens the breech (the only manual operation), then the projectile is sent to the chamber, the breech automatically closes and the gun is ready to fire. To the left and right of the central door there are two manually torn doors; a rack with six 120-mm shots and part of the communication kit is located behind the right door (behind the shooter), while ammunition ammunition for auxiliary weapons is located behind the left door. As in the original Centauro machine, the shooter is located at the bottom right, charging at the top right, and the commander at the left.

New tower (combat compartment) of the promoted wheeled armored vehicle Centauro II

The 120 / 45 smoothbore gun is a new development from Oto Melara and is characterized by a perforated muzzle brake typical of the Centauro family, which allows firing even with caliber stabilized ammunition that is poorly compatible with slit muzzle brakes. All drives are electric, the maximum transfer speed is 0,4 rad / s with acceleration 0,7 rad / s 2, while the maximum speed of vertical guidance is 0,5 rad / s with acceleration 0,8 rad / s 2; vertical homing angles from -7 ° to + 16 °. The fire control system is a modernized version of the OMS installed on the Centauro and the Ariete tank, while the optoelectronic systems are all new. The commander now has the Attila D fully digital panoramic periscope developed by the Land and Naval Electronic Division of Leonardo-Finmeccanica (formerly Selex ES). It includes a fully stabilized touch package consisting of a Full HD color camera with x10 optical zoom, a Erica 3 generation thermal imaging camera with an 640X512 pixel matrix with 16 μm pitch, operating in the 3,7-5,0 μm range, and a laser rangefinder with a range 10 km. The Attila D periscope head with all this built-in electronics has vertical angles of + 60 ° / -20 °. The commander has two displays: the 12 inch is mainly used for the guidance system and the 10 inch display for the SICCONA command and control system. The newest member of the Lothar family — the Lothar SD sighting digital arrow system — includes a color HD camera, a Tilde B thermal imaging camera operating in the 8-12 μm range, and the same laser range finder as in the commander periscope. When the sighting system fails, the commander can fire with his periscope. In the event of a power failure, a backup telescope is available for the shooter.

As already mentioned, the command and control system is based on the latest version of SICCONA, adopted by the Italian army; in comparison with the equipment of previous machines, for example Freccia, more powerful computers and new displays are installed. A set of six radio stations guarantees the maximum level of communication: it includes Turma CNR2000 HF for long-distance voice and data transmission, SDR VM3-SBW UHF, connecting a machine with soldiers in the field, a broadband UHF radio station HCDR, two radio stations SRT-635 SINCGARS VHF for medium-range voice and data communications and a Harris AN / PRC 152 UHF radio station providing satellite communications and aircraft communications, as well as serving as an emergency portable radio station. A system has been installed to combat the VCA - the Guardian H3 Stack silencer, these are four conformal antennas around the machine’s perimeter and two standard antennas on the roof of the tower. Also installed a new version of the receiver warning of laser irradiation RALM.

Freccia machine of the Italian army in Afghanistan. The level of protection of the Centauro II was upgraded to reflect the combat experience gained in this theater.

Spain will adopt the Piranha 5 as the basis of its new 8xXNNXX wheeled BMP. It’s not clear yet when the first prototype will be available and how many cars will be purchased.

The auxiliary weapon includes a twin 7,62-mm machine gun with three ammunition cartridges for 250 cartridges, as well as a remote-controlled Hitrole Light combat module, which can be armed with an 7,62 or 12,7-mm machine gun or an 40-mm automatic grenade launcher, respectively with four XNX - cartridge boxes, four 250-cartridge boxes or two 100-cartridge boxes. Compared with the previous tower with an 48-mm cannon, whose combat mass with all the equipment and full ammunition is 105 kg, the new tower with the 7800-mm cannon and Level A armor kit weighs 120 kg. It should be noted that when installing the 8700-mm gun, the capacity of the new turret is preserved.

The CIO consortium carried out numerous ballistic and anti-explosion tests; four machines and towers, as well as several ballistic kits were made for this purpose. Firing tests have already been carried out, the configuration must be finally approved after the Eurosatory 2016 exhibition, and in the fourth quarter of the year 2016 the qualification process will begin by the Italian Ministry of Defense. The Italian army intends to replace the current Centauro with a new machine in its reconnaissance regiments; However, looking at the current budget, it is not clear when the first contract will be signed.

The development of the Centauro II will have an impact on existing vehicles, for example, the development of the next version of the VBM Freccia armored vehicle, designated VBM +, which can take the engine and protection designed for the Centauro II artillery with an 120-mm gun, is being considered. At present, the CIO consortium has placed most of the Freccia vehicles in the first middle brigade “Pinerolo”, with the exception of commander and reconnaissance options, which are at the final stage of refinement and the requirements for which are still being finalized. With appropriate funding in the fourth quarter of 2016, the first batch of vehicles should be ordered, designed to form the second middle brigade.

The Danish army will be the first to adopt the development of the company GDELS for the Piranha 5 armored vehicle. In the photo version of the 8x8 armored personnel carrier, which will replace the Danish armored personnel carrier М113

The new Piranha 5 armored vehicle, first presented at Eurosatory 2010, achieved its first big success in 2015, when Spain and Denmark announced the choice of the newest model 8x8 from the well-known family, which the Swiss company Mowag, which is currently included in General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) staff. In September of the same year, Spain signed a low-risk research contract for this machine worth 89,2 million euros, which was issued to the temporary joint venture UTE VCR 8x8, formed from Santa Barbara Sistemas (part of GDELS), Indra and Sapa; the last two are responsible for the electronic architecture and communication kit and power unit, respectively. The goal here is to get a fully Spanish product that will later be offered in the overseas market. A three-year research and development contract funded by the Ministry of Industry includes the manufacture of five pilot machines. The car, known under the designation VCR (Detegico de Combate sobre Ruedas), will undergo a comprehensive test in the Spanish army, which will decide in 2018 about the possible initial production. Thus, Spain, one way or another, will receive a completely national decision, for this it rejected the proposals of the French Nexter with the VBCI machine and the Italian consortium CIO (between Iveco DV and Oto Melara) with the Freccia machine, although both vehicles were tested in combat conditions in Afghanistan .

The Piranha 5 armored vehicle with its combat weight of 30 tons (although it can reach 33 tons) and the payload of 13 tons can be transported in the A400M military transport aircraft. It will be assembled at the GDELS plant in Seville, while the chassis will be manufactured at the Trubia plant. According to the available information, the Spanish army may not use all the available payload, but will be satisfied with the combat mass of 25-26 tons and thus leave room for future upgrades. Part of the machines must be delivered in the version of an armored personnel carrier with a double-action drive with an 7,62-mm or 12,7-mm machine gun; also an option for an infantry fighting vehicle with a turret armed with an 30-mm cannon and a Spike ATGM. It is worth noting that during the first public appearance in 2010, the Kongsberg tower with an 5-mm cannon was installed on the Piranha 30 machine, and GDELS offers weapon installations up to the 120 caliber mm. The needs of Spain range from 300 to 400 machines, and the number of 340 in this case is the most likely.

For the BMP version of its Piranha 5 (pictured with the DUBM), GDELS offers mid-caliber towers, as well as towers with an 120-mm cannon for the fire support option

Although the first contract was signed with Spain, the first country to deploy the Piranha 5 armored vehicle will be Denmark, since it signed a contract in December 2015 of the year for mass production and supply of 2018 to 2023 year 309 machines. The Danish contract is not only the first successful contract for the Piranha 5, but also marks the transition from tracks to the wheels of another country. Selected bidders were divided equally: Armadillo (CV-90 modification) from BAE Systems Hagglunds and PMF G5 from FFG represented the “track group”, while VBCI from Nexter and Piranha 5 from GDELS represented the “wheel group”. The contract was signed between GDELS-Mowag and the Danish Defense Procurement Organization (DALO) and includes six different vehicle variants - infantry, commander, sanitary, engineering mortar and repair, which will replace the corresponding versions of the outdated M113 BTR. The total need of the country is 450 machines Piranha 5, and therefore the contract provides for several options, which in case of urgent need will increase the number of cars to this figure. Denmark is already armed with Piranha 3, as well as other GDELS vehicles, such as the Duro III and Eagle IV, for which a multi-year framework service contract was signed several days after signing the Piranha 5 contract.

It is worth noting that the Piranha 5 is not the latest development in the family. In June, 2014, at Eurosatory, GDELS unveiled the Piranha 3 + model. Compared with the latest versions of the Piranha 3, the new machine has its own weight of 16 tons versus 13,4 tons and 11 tons payload versus 9,2 tons; internal volume increased from 13,5 to 14 m3. To cope with the maximum combat weight of 27 tons allows the new Caterpillar C13 engine with 520 horsepower, which was replaced by the original HP 400 engine; Hydropneumatic suspension is offered as an alternative to the traditional. The Piranha 3 + armored vehicle implements modular security solutions that increase the level of protection against mines and IEDs. These solutions are also offered as upgrades to the existing Piranha 3 fleet, while much of the powertrain enhancements are based on the work carried out as part of the Canadian LAV machine upgrading program and the powertrain of the American Stryker ECP powertrain. As part of the process of cross-border consolidation in the land-based systems sector, Kongsberg, a symbol of remotely controlled combat modules, acquired 49,9% of Patria in March 2016 of the year. Thus, the Scandinavian defense conglomerate was formed, taking into account that Patria owns 50% of Nammo, and the remaining 50% is owned by the Norwegian state. This will further enhance the company's commercial opportunities in the world.

The armored vehicle Piranha 3 + was first presented at the Eurosatory 2014 exhibition.

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  1. 0
    6 October 2016 08: 22
    all are armed, apparently there will be a big mess.
    1. +6
      6 October 2016 09: 15
      Italian cars are always beautifully designed. Both cars and military. You can’t say anything, people know how!
      1. PAM
        6 October 2016 11: 47
        design in military equipment laughing Well, damn it, in my opinion the last thing to consider. What amazes me is the presence of a loader in a newly designed turret and a gun, given that the shots are unitary (which is much easier to do, well, either copy (the benefit is full of development) or buy at least dill (everyone sells and is cheap). no matter how much weight you could save with all the consequences for a wheeled chassis.
      2. +2
        6 October 2016 13: 58
        Quote: xetai9977
        Italian cars are always beautifully designed. Both cars and military. You can’t say anything, people know how!

        they were distinguished by design, but can not be said about the fighting qualities of military Italian equipment.
  2. PKK
    6 October 2016 08: 24
    The main tendencies were indicated by the "Armata" family. All the rest are considered and compared with it.
    The Spanish Sauska, described in the article, is tall and will often roll upside down with the wrong maneuver or from a nearby powerful explosion.
  3. 0
    6 October 2016 08: 43
    damn it, how can she accurately shoot to one side in a full-fledged 120mm caliber: four wheels to the side are not even six rollers
    1. 0
      6 October 2016 09: 12
      correction, it is in the longitudinal plane - it will be almost as bad. And judging by the picture, back-to-back is better than in the regular
      1. avt
        6 October 2016 09: 30
        Quote: pimen
        in the longitudinal plane

        Pleased in the photo of shooting from this centaur, which we sucked in at Taburetkin, 4 (four) shoes under the rear four wheels. Interesting - the shoes are included in the package, or buy separately from the car, well, or do it yourself? laughing
        1. 0
          6 October 2016 09: 40
          the shoes will reduce the rollback, but do not compensate for the shock-absorbing work of the suspension and tires. In my opinion, it will be even worse
          1. +1
            6 October 2016 20: 14
            = 4xe3ZkkvUjo
            the actual video about the shooting starts at 3 minutes. shoots sideways and about a miracle does not fall.
            1. +1
              6 October 2016 20: 47
              By the way, here's another video about a striker with a 105mm gun
              he doesn’t fall too, but he shakes him about the shot many times stronger.
              In general, the question is not whether it can shoot sideways from a place, but whether it can do it on the go. In both cases, that the centaur that the straker on the go shoot only along the way that leads to reflection.
    2. +2
      6 October 2016 09: 47
      It all depends on the effectiveness of the recoil and muzzle brake
      1. 0
        6 October 2016 09: 53
        But the weight of the car and the size of the tower do not bother you?
    3. +3
      6 October 2016 11: 55
      Attention to digged supports!
      So it is. This miracle comes. A crew with shovels and picks falls out from there and buries concrete bars, so that when fired, this miracle would not be torn down ... And it is strictly parallel to the central axis of movement, in order to avoid a circus somersault with a woman!
      1. +3
        7 October 2016 02: 09
        Quote: Peacemaker
        Attention to digged supports!

        These are the "bench"
        see "WITHOUT props"

        on the run

      2. 0
        7 October 2016 15: 08
        Quote: Peacemaker
        Attention to digged supports!
        So it is. This miracle comes. A crew with shovels and picks falls out from there and buries concrete bars, so that when fired, this miracle would not be torn down ... And it is strictly parallel to the central axis of movement, in order to avoid a circus somersault with a woman!

        Send it to the Italians, let the boys laugh! wassat
  4. +2
    6 October 2016 10: 44
    I don’t know - I like it. The chassis is multifunctional. They thought about the carriage. Does anyone confuse the possibility of shooting to the side? So I understand this is not a front-line machine, but fire support. He set himself in the right angle for a few seconds, he shot himself and go!
    1. 0
      6 October 2016 11: 30
      Meanwhile, a 12,7 mm fighter with a Kord rifle loaded an armor-piercing incendiary into an ammunition .... and goodbye my glorious crew!
      Claws in one direction, pliers in the other .... Sorry, this is from a different tale wassat
      1. +3
        6 October 2016 11: 48
        Well, my friend, it’s you, sorry, the Kremlin dreamer ... For you, you don’t need to create anything - give Kord to all the soldiers and fear us NATO! An ideal weapon does not exist. And do you have confidence that the ammunition is covered with plywood, and not with high-strength alloyed armor? So leave your tales with you ... hi
        1. avt
          6 October 2016 12: 00
          Quote: Leader of the Redskins
          Well, my friend, it’s you, sorry, the Kremlin dreamer ... For you, you don’t need to create anything - give Kord to all the soldiers and fear us NATO! An ideal weapon does not exist.

          There is a photo in the article, but under it
          Freccia machine of the Italian army in Afghanistan. The level of protection of the Centauro II was upgraded to reflect the combat experience gained in this theater.
          laughing Note - spirits spawn CORD was not. DShK, KPV there certainly are available, not to mention RPGs. laughing True, Italians do not speak and do not write in the article about the most important armor of Italian cars - to pay spirits so that they do not shoot at them during their stay. bullyWell, in general, this freak has NO advantages against the "Octopus" self-propelled guns, well, unless it is really more comfortable because of its size.
  5. +2
    6 October 2016 11: 31
    And that Czechoslovakia won at one time 152mm DANA made 120 pieces in 1990, even in the USSR. South Africa has a much greater experience of wheel howitzers, not only in the design and preparation, but also in the application in the database
    1. +2
      6 October 2016 12: 30
      you still imagine the difference between shooting at an angle of 60 degrees and direct fire. Although without the possibility of lying on your belly or hanging on the hydraulics of relatively light vehicles, it’s difficult to talk about firing accuracy with an unguided projectile
  6. 0
    6 October 2016 20: 57
    A useless thing in our time. For the wars of the middle and end of the 20th century, this centaur can be useful, as well as the Yuarovsky Ruikat. For fighting ambush with tanks of those years. Now, with the development of anti-tank weapons, only transfer money.
    Yuarovtsy have already abandoned the production of Ruikatov, something created on the goose’s heavy.
    The French with AMX, still play "colonial" wars.
    And the Italians created for complacency that something serious would happen to all Germans or Americans would turn for more serious equipment.
    1. +2
      6 October 2016 21: 34
      Well, what do you suggest for use for example supply convoys? Will the tank be cheaper? BMP (BMD, BTR) will not give high-explosive support. Octopus and Nona are not always at hand. And the tracks for the trucks will not be stolen.
      1. 0
        6 October 2016 22: 03
        An armored personnel carrier with a 57 mm gun, a 120 mm mortar, and for example, there are D 30 howitzers on the Kamaz chassis. There are compact multiple launch rocket systems, as well as automatic mortars and grenade launchers.

        Quote: Leader of the Redskins
        And the tracks for the trucks will not be stolen.

        The average speed on the march is 40-60 km / h. Caterpillar equipment on automobile trailers and trailers is quite quickly thrown.
        And for me, an anti-tank crew on a pickup truck, they do more "cases" and are cheaper.
        1. +4
          6 October 2016 22: 35
          "An armored personnel carrier with a 57 mm gun, a 120 mm mortar and, for example, there are D 30 howitzers" ////

          As for weapons, I agree with you. 120 mm gun against tanks, I would not put
          on such a wheeled platform.
          And in terms of protection - without a full-fledged KAZ, it is better for such "wheelers" not to meddle in places where guys with Cornets or TOUs are diving.
    2. +2
      7 October 2016 15: 11
      Quote: marshes
      Useless thing nowadays.

      That's nice, we can sleep peacefully until they figured it out smile

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