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Israëli defense minister stop Merkava production what's next?

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posted on Sep, 6 2006 @ 08:19 PM
So I heard this news, the defense minister of Israël just said that they are stopping Merkava tanks production. Do they stop to create a new version of the tank or stop making tanks at all? Can't find a link for now.

What would be the next fighting machine that would be on the ground, armored and have a great firepower? Something that would replace tanks? I thought of exoskeletons, with nano-technology they can do that no? A Mechwarrior-like exoskeleton... Or new tanks?

Thanks for you're future thought about this subject!

[edit on 6-9-2006 by Vitchilo]

posted on Sep, 6 2006 @ 09:10 PM
Care to share a link to that info, I hadn't heard Merkava weren't going to be produced anymore...perhaps after being banged up in Lebanon...and the answer to your other questions:

Even if they did stop manufacturing Merkava, they won't stop making and upgrading tanks..they kinda need them because they're surrounded by "hostiles"

posted on Sep, 6 2006 @ 09:15 PM
Yeah but if their tanks are crushed, they are useless. They could create something better for their protections than tanks. I mean, maybe, in face of always new RPGs, maybe it's the end of tanks era as when the black powder appeared making bows useless?

posted on Sep, 6 2006 @ 10:34 PM
Aren't they fitting their Mervaka 4 tanks with the trophy system? That would eliminate the RPG threat, though the landmines and IEDs remain.

posted on Sep, 7 2006 @ 03:21 PM
If the merkava got that badly banged up then no tank is safe. I think the Merkava is the most heavily armoured tank there is.

posted on Sep, 7 2006 @ 03:25 PM
Depends on what it costs and who is going to pay for it. You cannot have a discussion about military hardware without considering those issues. I have to agree with others here that tanks need radical rethinking or their days are probably numbered. It depends on the theatre of war or course.

posted on Sep, 7 2006 @ 03:30 PM

Originally posted by tomcat ha
If the merkava got that badly banged up then no tank is safe. I think the Merkava is the most heavily armoured tank there is.

I heard that they thinking of abandoning the production of the Merkava 4 tanks for cost cutting since back in 2004. The recent conflict probably made them make up their minds and definitely end the Merkavas and make a new tank.

posted on Sep, 8 2006 @ 06:38 PM
The "revolutionary" approach of Merkavas engine compartment location is its Achilles hill.

The engine is located in the front of the hull just like in various APCs, and has a total of THREE internal fuel tanks.

One in the engine compartment, and two in the back. Fuel lines run the entire length of the hull thus posing a much higher danger of fire in comparison to a single aft mounted internal tank with additional external tanks.

While Merkavas do allow a limited space in the back for infantrymen (4 to 6), just like in previous generations in order to facilitate the men part of the ammo has to be unloaded.

Even though a concept of a MBT carrying its own infantry for protection is a good one in principle, the space required to carry them simply robs from performance of the tank.

Further more, those troops are not as well protected as the crew, and when the tank is hit they are the ones that usually suffer casualties.

4 soldiers killed in Lebanon

An IDF soldier was killed Thursday evening by an anti-tank missile in the Lebanese village of al-Taibeh in the eastern district of southern Lebanon. The soldier has been named as SergeantYonatan Sharabi, 19, of Petah Tikva.

Earlier three IDF soldiers were killed and another was severely wounded when Hizbullah operatives fired an anti-tank missile at their Merkava tank.

Another issue with forward mounted engine is uneven weight distribution resulting in down slope "tipping".

Note that on all Merkavs the turret location is shifted towards the rear, and it is done so in order to balance the weigh of the power pack and prevent down slope "dragging".

Tipping looks kind of like this;

Tanks with traditionally rear mounted power packs do not suffer from such issue and negotiate down slopes much easier and faster then Merkava.

Naturally another major issue is vulnerability to mines of even moderate strength, since once the engine is struck the tank is completely immobilized.

I'm not going to look for it now, but there was another article about a Merkava which took a hit to the engine from a mine during the recent Lebanese campaign, and required a massive operation in order to evacuate the surviving crew.

Mark my words, the next Israeli tank will have a rear mounted engine.

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