Rheinmetall Wins 2 Large-Cal Ammo Contracts
Turkey and the Netherlands recently awarded Rheinmetall AG of Dusseldorf, Germany contracts for large-calibre tank and artillery ammunition worth some EUR 79 million ($94 million at current conversion).
While US APFS-DS tank rounds use depleted uranium, the DM 63 uses hardened tungsten. Its new temperature-independent powder makes it suitable for use in extreme climate zones without limitation, which is important because Germany’s tank fire-sales and the Rheinmetall 120mm gun’s popularity abroad has created a customer base of roughly 20 countries that use their gun. The Rh 40 DM 131, meanwhile, is a 155mm artillery shell with a reported maximum range of over 40 km, and “insensitive explosives” that are far less prone to “cook off” if hit by enemy fire. With respect to the individual orders.
DID covered the fire-sale of 298 surplus Leopard 2 main battle tanks to Turkey from the Bundeswehr inventory. In December 2005, Rheinmetall Defence received an order to supply Turkey with 15,000 rounds of 120mm DM 63 Kinetic Eenergy (KE, APFS-DS) ammunition, including practice ammunition. The Bundeswehr has begun to buy the new round, and the Turkish order is worth around EUR 46 million ($55 million at current conversion), and delivery will take place between July 2006-June 2007.
In terms of Rheinmetall’s new Rh 40 DM 131 round, it is qualified for the Bundeswehr but rheinmetall notes that the Netherlands will be the first nation to field the new ammunition. The contract covers 10,000 artillery shells and 67,000 DM 92 modular propelling charges (MTLS), and is worth EUR 33 million ($39 million at current conversion).
The Netherlands is buying this package as part of its PzH 2000 self-propelled howitzer procurement program. This weapon has been delivered to the German Bundeswehr as its future self-propelled howitzer, and has also been selected for the Greek and Italian armies. Delivery will take place through to the end of 2007.
See corporate release.