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modified: Nov 10, 2012

T-72CZ is a main battle tank developed in the Czech republic based on the Soviet T-72M1.

Following a competition in 1995, the Military Repair Plant 025 (VOP 025) was selected to be the prime contractor for a T-72M1 upgrade program. Two prototypes, designated T-72CZ M3 and T-72CZ M4, were built. The latter had a new Israeli NIMDA power pack which provides greater mobility.

Late in 2002, VOP 025 awarded subcontracts to domestic and foreign companies. The UK firm Caterpillar Defense Products began sending Perkins CV-12 diesel engines to the Czech Republic in at the start of 2003. A total of thirty vehicles are planned to be upgraded by VOP 025.

Improvements include the installation of a new Italian Galileo Avionica Tank Universal Reconfigurable Modular System (TURMS) fire-control system. The main part of the fire-control system is the Turret Management ballistic Computer (TMC) which combines the functions of a ballistic computer and gun control system into a single unit. It has seven function blocks consisting of analog interface, resolver interface, digital and relay logic interface, communications interface, hydraulic driver power switching, and power supply.

The commander and gunner have primary stabilized day/thermal sights. The gunner also has a laser rangefinder. The commander's sight is a roof-mounted periscope type.

The commander has a new fixed cupola which has a stabilized panoramic sight on the forward part. On the right side is a new 12.7mm NSV machine gun support.

A muzzle reference system has been added to the 125mm 2A46M smoothbore gun. Digital control and filtering has been incorporated into the hydraulic gun control system.

New tank commander's and gunner's joysticks have been fitted. In addition, new sensors including turret position sensor, turret traverse accelerometer, meteorological sensor, ammunition powder temperature sensor, elevation transducer and turret gyro, vertical sensor and weapon gyro.

The turret has been fitted with a Polish PCO SSC-1 laser warning system. The Polish DYNA explosive reactive armor has been installed over the frontal arc of the turret providing protection against both kinetic and chemical energy.

Other components of the upgrade program include the NBV-97 inertial/GPS land navigation system and the DITA-97 diagnostic system. The Metra Blankso SP mineclearing system is mounted on the front of the hull.

The M3 has two turbo-blowers added for the original engine as well as a modified transmission. The M4 has a British 1,000hp Condor CV-12 engine coupled to an American XTG-411-6 fully automatic transmission.

Both the T-72CZ M3 and M4 can be fitted with the NBZ-90 dozer system to prepare fire positions and clear battlefield obstacles.

References: JAA5
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