Main battle tank
length=9.67 m (7.59 without gun)
armour=Classified, steel/composite blend
42 rounds (15 rounds inside Turret magazine with additional 27 rounds in the chassis)
secondary_armament= 7.62mm coaxial machine-gun, 7.62mm AA machine-gun
engine=V-12 turbocharged diesel FIAT MTCA
engine_power=1,247 hp (937 kW)
The C1 Ariete is a
main battle tankdeveloped for the Italian Armyby Iveco Fiatand Oto Melara.
The original Ariete was designed, constructed, and tested by the IVECO FIAT - Oto Melara Syndicated Company, headquartered in
Rome. This company is a business merger consisting of two separate defense contractors:
*IVECO's Defence Vehicles Division, responsible for the development of the chassis and support systems, and
Oto Melara, responsible for the turret and fire-controlsystem development.
The Ariete is currently in service with the
Italian Army. It began with the first tank's delivery in 1995. The final delivery completed 7 years later in August 2002. An upgraded version, with modular armor, auto-loader and 55-calibre gun, was displayed in 2005 and ready for production.
Typical of the modern day main battle tank, the Ariete can engage targets in a variety of conditions. It can engage stationary or moving targets; it can attack opponents whether or not the Ariete is on-the-move; finally, it can engage targets day or night with the factory-installed thermal imager and laser rangefinder.
The standard load-out consists of three primary weapons systems:
*A 120 mm main gun,
*A 7.62 mm coaxial machine gun (manned by a crew member), and
*A 7.62 mm anti-aircraft (manned by the tank commander).
Its primary weapon is the 55-calibre 120 mm main gun produced and manufactured by Oto Melara. The gun's barrel is a
smoothboredesign, and is autofrettaged and stress-hardened to increase durability over extended periods of fire. Its implementation allows for the use of a combined load-out of armour-piercing, fin-stabilized, discarding sabot(APFSDS) and high-explosive anti-tank ( HEAT) rounds.
Crew and tank protection
The primary defense system protecting any contemporary tank is its armor plating. While the exact specifications of the armor are government and trade secrets, the manufacturer states that it is a
steeland composite blend, similar to the British Challenger 2 tankand the American M1 Abrams.
Also important to the tank's defense are two laterally-mounted grenade launchers. Each launcher is electronically-fired, and consists of four barrels which can be intermixed with either smoke or chaff grenades. The smoke grenades are capable of shrouding the tank from visual or thermal detection. The chaff grenades are useful for dispersing the tank's
radar cross section.
In addition it provides War Kit And PKO Kit it will be able to reinforce the Front armor and the side Armor with an optional package.
Finally, the crew cabin is protected by an anti-NBC system designed by [http://www.aerosekur.com/ Aero Sekur] . It is capable of protecting the crew for a period of time from any modern nuclear, radiological, biological, or chemical attack.
Fire control and target acquisition
The tank's fire-control system is of Italian manufacture, produced by [http://www.galileoavionica.it/trimprob/ Galileo Avionica] (now a part of [http://www.selex-sas.com/ Selex Galileo] ). It is designated the TURMS Fire-Control System, and includes, among other features:
*Day- and night-capable panoramic commander's scope for increased visibility,
*Stabilized gunner's platform including thermal optics and a
laser rangefinderto increase accuracy and expedite target detection and targeting,
*Digital fire-control mini-computer.
The most important aspect, the fire-control computer, is capable of measuring
wind speed, humidity, and exterior weather conditions, combining them with the turret's angle of elevation, attitude, and the barrel's physical wear to increase accuracy.
Powerplant and drivetrain
The Ariete's powerplant is powered by a 25.8 litres turbo-charged Fiat-Iveco 12-cylinder diesel engine. Its rated output is 937 kilowatts (equivalent to 1250-HP) at 2.300 rpm, with a max torque of 4.615 Nm at 1.600 rpm [ [http://www.ferreamole.it/images/mbt_ariete/mbtariete01.htm MBT ARIETE - pag.1 ] ] .
It has a ZF LSG3000
automatic transmission, licensed from the German automobile engineering firm [http://www.zf.com/ ZF] , and has four forward gears and two reverse, allowing for a top cruising speed of 65 km/h. The transmission allows it to climb grades rated up to 60%, and can ford waterways of up to 1.25-m on-the-fly.
caterpillar tracks are fairly standard, composed of seven road wheels and four drive rollers, and designed by another German engineering firm, the [http://www.diehl.com Diehl Group] .
During the first years of adoption, the Ariete MBT showed some deficiency, especially regarding the powerplant and the armour. The original V12 1,250 hp
FIAT- IvecoMTCA (Modular Turbo-Charged Aftercooler) engine has the advantage of being a modular unit, practically a doubling of the V6 engine used by several vehicles of the Italian Army (such as the Centauro tank destroyerand the Dardo IFV) but had less power output than the most advanced units adopted by other western design in the same years. The Ariete engine had to function at high rpm to give a good power performance thus reducing the operating time between failures.
Moreover, to have a good power to weight ratio, the total weight of the tank had to be maintained well under the 60 ton. The relatively light weight of the Ariete helped lower consumption and facilitated the transport and mobility of the MBT (especially over bridges). This was obtained partially at the expense of the thickness of the armour that, only partially compensated by the good ballistic shape of the vehicle, raised some doubt about its ability to survive in the most harsh environments.
To fix the deficiencies, Iveco developed a new version of the MTCA engine. The displacement was enhanced to 30 litres increasing the stroke, while a new
common raildirect fuel injection system was adopted, along with a new double turbocharger, thus increasing the power output to 1,600 hp at 1,800 rpm (with an electronically reduced torque of 5,500 Nm, maintained from 1,100 to 1,800 rpm to reduce damage to the transmission) and further reducing the fuel consumption. The new engine will be adopted during the first general revision of the existing vehicles. As for the armour, Oto Melaradeveloped two different sets (with different thickness) of adjunctive armour, shown for the first time at Eurostatory 2002. With these developments it is possible to adapt the power to weight ratio.
*ITA - 200
**20° Tank battalion "M.O. Pentimalli", 4° Tank Regiment of Bellinzago Novarese (NO), 41 Ariete
**3° Tank battalion "M.O. Galas", 32° Tank Regiment of Tauriano (PN), 41 Ariete
**8° Tank battalion "M.O. Secchiaroli", 132° Tank Regiment of Cordenòns (PN), 41 Ariete
**31° Tank battalion "M.O. Andreani", 131° Tank Regiment of Persano (SA), 41 Ariete [ [http://www.army-technology.com/projects/ariete/ Army Technology - Ariete - Main Battle Tank ] ]
List of tanks
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