The National Interest (USA): attention! American tanks can bring down the Polish bridges when you go into battle with Russia

the us army and its closest allies have a problem. In that region of the world where it is most likely the use of us heavy machinery in modern warfare using high-tech, full of old and rickety bridges that cannot bear the weight of tanks.

So the army want to purchase armored vehicle launched bridges to solve this problem. The demand for them is very clear. Not to allow Russia to attack Poland and the Baltic States, land forces and their NATO allies must involve heavy armored vehicles such as tanks M-1, armored vehicles and self-propelled artillery.

Research center of RAND’s close ties with the us military, in February 2020 released a report, which stresses the importance of heavy equipment of the army.

“the results of the analysis prove conclusively that heavy equipment to the ground forces and air defenses have intimidating and deterrent effect, the report says, especially when they are used on the theatre of war in General, but not necessarily on the front line of potential conflict”.

a Regiment of ground troops with 300 wheeled armored vehicles “Stryker” is the only American mechanized part which is in Europe on a permanent basis. On the continent also deployed 173rd airborne brigade of the land forces.

Recently, the us army returned to Europe, the division’s tracked missile launchers. The second division is scheduled to deploy there in 2020, and then US army on the continent will be 18 rocket launchers.The context ofSudden inspection of the combat readiness of troops in Southvennogo CountyTNI: the British army need a new artillery for the victory over Russiathe National Interest01.12.2019 the Times: the Bundeswehr had to use cars instead bronetehnika Times28.01.2020 T-15 “Armata”: the Russian BMP in the future?The National Interest20.09.2016

the army also went to Europe for a period of nine months, one armored brigade, which change each other. Usually in the armoured brigade has about 90 tanks M-1 and 130 infantry fighting vehicles M-2, plus 18 self-propelled howitzers M-109.

In conjunction with NATO countries in this region, about 130 tanks, and 90 of them are American M-1, located there temporarily on a rotational basis. In Russia, however, about 760 tanks at a distance of possible impact on Baltic members of NATO.

American and NATO tanks weigh 60 tons or more. And that’s a problem. “If Western European infrastructure during the cold war, was reinforced to withstand the weight of 60-ton tanks of the NATO, the Eastern Europe, such a construction could not afford, and in any event, its infrastructure must have been only lighter Soviet tanks like T-72, which weigh 45 tons,” said Sidney Friedberg (Sydney Freedberg).

“What does this mean for the military? Weighing over 60 tonnes main battle tank M-1 Abrams and most of the NATO vehicles, such as the British “Challenger 2”, the German “Leopard II” and even the French “Leclerc”, unsafe for many bridges, which is in dire need of the Alliance”.

to help his tanks to overcome the narrow ravines, ditches and other obstacles in the United States army used armored vehicle launched bridges. But of the 250 available on voorangling machines of this type, 200 were made in 1970-ies. They used the chassis of the M-60, and these bridging systems are too slow and unreliable. They do not have time for modern high-speed tanks.

Still have 50 bridge-builders “Wolverine” on the basis of M-1 1990-ies construction. “Wolverin” faster, but it has a more complex mechanism to build bridges. “We found it very difficult to maintain and operate,” said Lieutenant Colonel Jeff Biggens (Jeff Biggans) that meets the army’s technique of building bridges.

In the army began development of a new unified Joint Assault bridge layer Bridge that combines the old metolazone equipment and chassis M-1. “This compromise,” said Biggins. But the new bridge layer has its own problems.

At each stage of testing this machine in 2019 were found to have serious defects. “Mostly it was problems with the hydraulics and the problems of crew training,” said a specialist in the development of technology to build bridges from the army Steve Rienstra (Steve Rienstra).

the Company “DRS Leonardo” (Leonardo DRS) involved in the design of the single bridge layer Joint Assault Bridge, made changes to your project. Military experts believe that the next phase of testing for this machine will be better. But despite this, the army for 2021 has reduced funding for this project from 200 to a $ 74 million.

the bridge layer will begin to enter the army very late. Therefore the land forces and their allies need to find some way to transport their tanks across the Polish river with them too flimsy to handle the weight of the bridges.

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