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Slovak T-72M2 Moderns (Antares)

In 1993, the Slovak ZTS plant at Dubnica nad Vahom entered into a cooperative agreement with the Belgian electro-optics firm SABCA to develop an upgraded fire control and electronics package for the T-72M. This project was originally called Antares, but in 1994, it was renamed Moderna; the Slovak/Belgian electronics portion is named Lyra.

The gunner's periscopic TPN-1-49-23 sight is replaced by the Vega thermal imaging sight, which links to the existing TPD-K1 laser sight. The thermal imaging sight has an optical elbow in the commander's station as well. The Vega Plus fire control package includes both the new sight as well as a new digital ballistic computer and various input sensors to improve gun performance. A new commander's station is fitted with a panoramic French SFIM VS 580 stabilized sight with its own passive night channel.

The 2E28M gun stabilization system is replaced by a new stabilization system to give the tank true fire on the move capability. The tank is also fitted with an intergated laser warning system, which has an automatic mode which can trigger countermeasures. A turret management system is fitted which provides readouts from the new systems, including the laser warning system. A new BAM frequency-hopping radio system with encryption is provided, incorporating an intercom with active noise reduction. There has also been a proposal to include a Sutrak air conditioner in the tank.

The original illustrations of the T-72 Antares released in 1993 showed the tank fitted with applique armor similar to the Kontakt-5 on the Russian T-80U or T-72BM/T-90. It is not clear from existing literature what the source of this armor package actually is; it may have simply been a paper proposal. In 1994 at the Brno IDET exhibition, the T-72M2 Moderna showed up instead with the Czech Dyna-72 reactive armor fitted. Another addition to the vehicle was a pair of Oerlikon-Contraves 20mm KAA cannon, one on either side of the rear of the turret, to provide air defense.



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