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Israel Unveils Its Latest Main Battle Tank, “Barak” (Merkava Mark 5)

Equipped with the latest sensors and Artificial Intelligence (AI) processing, Israel's latest main battle tank is set to enhance the readiness and capabilities of the country's military.

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(DEFENCE SECURITY ASIA) – After five years of development, the Israeli Ministry of Defense and the Israel Defense Force (IDF) have unveiled their newest main battle tank, “Barak,” the latest variant of the fifth-generation Merkava main battle tank, also known as “Merkava Mark 5.”

 The latest main battle tank will be used by the 52nd Armor Battalion of the Israeli Army’s 401st Brigade.

Equipped with state-of-the-art sensors and Artificial Intelligence (AI) processing, the latest main battle tank will enhance the readiness and capabilities of the Israeli military.

The development of Israel’s latest main battle tank also involved defense companies in the country, such as Elbit Systems, Rafael, and a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), ELTA.

The development of Israel’s latest main battle tank began in 2018.

According to the Israeli Ministry of Defense, the “Barak” main battle tank is equipped with a “sensor infrastructure” for target detection, and all intelligence information can be shared among the tanks and other units within the armed forces, making it a revolution on the battlefield.

Barak
Barak (Merkava Mark 5)
Barak
Barak (Merkava Mark 5)

 

According to the ministry, the Barak tank will enhance enemy detection capabilities and allow for engagement with adversaries exhibiting reduced signatures in various combat scenarios, both on the present-day battlefield and in anticipation of future threats facing maneuvering forces.

” Israel’s latest main battle tank is equipped with specialized solutions by Elbit Systems, which enhance the “Barak’s” ability to see its enemies, night vision capabilities, fire control systems for the main battle tank, E-LynX Software-Defined Radios (SDR), and the IronVision Head-Mounted Display 360°.

“Barak” will also be equipped with the Trophy Active Protection System developed by Rafael.

The commanders of Israel’s latest main battle tank will wear helmets developed by Elbit – similar to the helmets worn by fighter jet pilots – allowing them to see their entire surroundings and display real-time combat information.

 According to Elbit, their advanced helmet, called “IronVision,” produces images that enable the tank crews to see the area outside the combat vehicle, helping military personnel overcome limited visibility while improving mission effectiveness and safety at the same time.

Barak
Barak (Merkava Mark 5)
Barak
“IronVision” helmet for “Barak” commander

 

 “This helmet system will enable 360-degree vision by simply turning the head and tracking targets in real-time with the assistance of Artificial Intelligence capabilities,” according to the Israeli Ministry of Defense.

 Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant stated that the “Barak” main battle tank represents a leap in the capabilities of the country’s Armor Corps, ensuring its qualitative superiority in all phases of offense and defense.

 The Merkava main battle tank used by the Israeli military was first introduced in 1979 with its initial variant known as the “Merkava Mark 1.”

 The main battle tank’s primary variant, the Merkava Mark 2, was introduced into the Israeli military in 1983, before being succeeded by more recent variants such as the Merkava Mark 3, produced between 1989 and 2003.

 The Merkava Mark 4 main battle tank was introduced after 2003, and now the Merkava Mark 5, also known as “Barak,” is the latest iteration. — DSA

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