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Rheinmetall to modernise Puma for NATO VJTF 2023

23rd July 2019 - 11:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team


Germany’s defence procurement office has awarded a contract to the ARGE Puma consortium for the System Panzergrenadier Very High Joint Readiness Task Force 2023 (VJTF 2023) project, Rheinmetall announced on 22 July.

System Panzergrenadier links the Puma infantry fighting with the modular Future Soldier – Expanded System (IdZ-ES) soldier system, in an advanced, network-enabled warfare environment.

Rheinmetall’s share in the contract comes to over €470 million.

The company will furnish the German Bundeswehr with 41 upgraded Puma infantry fighting vehicles along with additional measures for improving communication between the infantry fighting vehicles and dismounted infantrymen.

The package also includes complete logistic support of the VJTF Pumas for a period of five years, a new generation of digital radios, as well as integration of the MELLS multirole light guided missile system. New daylight and thermal imaging cameras and a colour display feature in the upgrade too. Optimised day and night vision will increase the range of reconnaissance, while simultaneously widening the crew’s field of view. New training resources will enable the unit to train in a highly realistic manner.

Closely linked to the hardware of the new optronic systems and monitors for the infantry fighting vehicles is the contract for development of the ‘Vision Enhancement, Chassis’. Rheinmetall will also equip the mechanised infantry companies of the VJTF 2023 with its TacNet battle management system. 

Additionally, an initial lot of ten platoon versions of the IdZ-ES soldier system will be brought up to modern VJTF 2023 standard. Improved communication between the Puma crew and the dismounted infantry section will result in a continuously updated, uniform common operational picture.

During development of the new vision systems and their integration into the Puma, an initial lot of five sets of prototype assemblies will be fabricated and integrated into five standard vehicles. These tasks are to be complete by 2021. Verification will then take place at the Bundeswehr’s technical centres by 2023.

The Shephard News Team


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