Brazil Awards GDELS Contract to Supply Improved Ribbon Bridge System
General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) signed a contract with the Brazilian Army (Exército Brasileiro – EB) Commission for the production and delivery of the company’s Improved Ribbon Bridge (IRB).
In addition to the bridge, the company will deliver trucks, bridge adapter pallets and a bridge erection boat, as well as Integrated Logistics Support (ILS). Delivery of the first system is scheduled for 2019.
The Brazilian Army is an existing user of the company’s Floating Support Bridge (FSB). Both, the FSB and IRB systems are interoperable and offer key capabilities for armed forces worldwide.
The IRB can be operated as a multi-bay ferry as well as a floating bridge. It is designed to provide ground forces with the capability to transport heavy military equipment such as loaded heavy equipment transporter (HET), weapons systems, wheeled / tracked combat vehicles, trucks, suppliers and troops over rivers and wet gap obstacles, providing wide wet-gap crossing capability for loads up to Military Load Classification (MLC) 80 for tracked armoured vehicles and up to MLC 96 for wheeled vehicles and HET.
“This new acquisition of the IRB demonstrates the high confidence and satisfaction of the Brazilian Army in the performance of our advanced bridge systems,” Thomas Kauffmann, GDELS Vice President International Business & Services, said.
IRB is in service worldwide (Australian Army, German Army, Swedish Army and the Army and Marine Corps) and has supported theatre and peacekeeping operations, as well as humanitarian and environmental missions. It is fully interoperable with GDELS’ legacy floating bridge systems, including the FSB, the Standard Ribbon Bridge (SRB) and the M3 Amphibious Bridge and Ferry System.
IRB can be launched and recovered using all standard ribbon bridge (SRB) / FSB transport trucks, common bridge transporter (CBT) vehicle, as well as using 10t/15t palletised load system (PLS) trucks through a bridge adaptor pallet. The bridge can be laid with the help of a hydraulic system, which uses bio-degradable, non-inflammable fluid. A 100m bridge with 13 interior and two ramp bays can be built in approximately 30 minutes. It can be deployed under a variety of climatic conditions and is operable in water currents up to 3.05mps. It has a usable deck width of 6.75m for two-lane traffic for MLC 20 tracked / MLC 14 wheeled vehicles, and of 4.5m for single-lane traffic for MLC 80 tracked / MLC 96 wheeled vehicles.