The German Bundeswehr has awarded a €27 million contract to Rheinmetall for fabrication of thermal imagining aiming devices for the Marder Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV).
260 equipment kits will be delivered in 2022 and 2023.
The deal also includes extra devices for stockpiling as well as related accessories for the aiming devices.
Rheinmetall Electronics’ advanced Saphir 2.6 MK, will replace existing obsolete thermal imaging aiming devices used for reconnaissance and target engagement on Marder IFVs.
The latest Saphir 2.6 MK generation will significantly improve the observation range and round-the-clock reconnaissance quality.
This is due to the greater resolution of the detector and state-of-the-art display technology.
Advanced image processing software from the Saphir family, will unlock the full performance of the components under all operating conditions.
The Saphir 2.6 MK (MK: Marder configuration) was specially developed for the Marder IFV.
The Bundeswehr and other armies already utilize the core technology on a large scale, meaning that it can soon be used in the Marder too.
Rheinmetall will be fabricating the thermal imaging aiming devices with the aid of numerous subcontractors entirely in Germany.
State-of-the-art components from Rheinmetall affiliate, AIM Infrarot-Module GmbH of Heilbronn, will safeguard critical German defence technology expertise for the foreseeable future.
German mechanized infantry units will still use the Marder for several more years as it combines excellent tactical mobility and impressive firepower with the ability to transport troops quickly and safely in high-threat areas of operation.
The IFV’s operationally proven design features a powerpack in the forward section and a centrally positioned turret; the fighting compartment is in the rear and a generously dimensioned ramp for rapid entry and exit.
Together with the integration of the MELLS multirole lightweight guided missile system and the new Marder driver’s night vision device, will result in substantial tactical advantages for troops.
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