Czech Army’s Modernization Projects: Bridge Layer

Czech Army’s Modernization Projects: Bridge Layer
Author: Excalibur Army, CSG|Caption: AM-50 EX Bridge Layer
13 / 09 / 2018, 09:30

The engineer troops of the Czech Army currently operate the AM-50 Bridge Layers mounted on the chassis of the 8x8 TATRA-815 truck, an outdated vehicle constructed in the 1970’s. Within the modernization and acquisition projects announced in June by the Chief of General Staff the Ministry of Defence plans to procure 12 modern Bridge Layers for use out of contact with the enemy.

The Bridge Layer AM-50 is designed for launching a mobile bridge over dry or wet gaps such as canals, rivers,  ditches of 10 to 12,5 m in width. The bridge can support vehicles of up to 50 tons (the T-72M4 CZ Main Battle Tank weights 48 tons). Up to 8 bridges can be combined to span larger obstacles, while the maximum depth is 6 metres.

See also: Armoured Container Carriers - Army to acquire 61 vehicles (by Tatra Trucks)

These are the Army’s requirements for the new system:


  • Crew of 3;
  • Mobile bridge-laying vehicle to ensure movement of troops out of contact with the enemy;
  • Capability to span over a 24 m wide obstacle using 2 bridge fields;
  • Lifetime of 20 years;
  • 12 vehicles in total.

1. Cabin

  • Transport capacity to carry 4 soldiers;
  • Minimum ballistic protection according to the Level 2 of STANAG 4569, AEP-55;
  • Cabin equiped with collective automated CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear) protection, and air-conditioner.

2. Chassis

  • Wheeled all-terrain platform at least 8x8 (preferably a platform already operated by the Czech Army);
  • Fording depth at least 1.4 m.

3. Bridge

  • One way, scissor or telescopic sections;
  • Full or treadway deck with the option to add carriageway panels;
  • Load capacity at least MLC (Military Load Classification) 70;
  • Capability to span at least a 12 m wide obstacle with one bridge field;
  • Carriageway width between kerbs at least 4 m.

4. Mobility

  • Maximum road speed (loaded) at least 90 km/h;
  • Air and rail transportability;
  • Range at least 500 km;
  • Vertical obstacle passability at least 0.5 m.

5. Communication and information systems

  • VHF/UHF radio for voice and data communication;
  • Vehicle diagnostic system with open architecture.

A typical example of such system is the new AM-70 EX Bridge Laying Vehicle developed by Excalibur Army as a direct successor to the AM-50, AM-50 B and AM-50 EX. Its scissor type M-70 EX bridge is fully compatible with older bridge generations.

See also: Modernization Projects of the Czech Army

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