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Dutch combat vehicles will be equipped with MK7 tactical computers over the next 30 months at a cost of almost €20M. Tactical computers are the basis for Battlefield Management Systems (BMS), managing data from sensors and communications equipment, making it available at the various workstations in the combat vehicle.

Elbit Systems has presented its seventh-generation Enhanced Tactical Computer (ETC) at the Dutch Defence Exhibition of the Nederlandse Industrie voor Defensie en Veiligheid (NIDV).

The MK7 complies with NATO’s Generic Vehicular Architecture (GVA). It is backwards compatible and includes powerful Commercial Of The Shelf components such as the Intel i7 Quad Core processor and a solid-state drive. The new tactical computer features a 12.1” sun-readable LCD display, a high-resolution capacitive touchscreen, a GPS and a video recording function.

Similar to previous generations of ETCs, the ETC MK7 is designed to operate in harsh environmental and Electromagnetic Interference conditions, fully complying with MIL-STD-810G & MIL-STD-461E standards and interfaces with analogue and digital radio systems.

The MK7s replace the ETCs introduced in the Netherlands more than ten years ago. The new ETCs offer enhanced and more robust Command and Control (C2) and tactical data processing capabilities, improved security for processing and storing secured mission information, and a solid growth path for advanced C2 applications.

As recently as mid-December 2020, the Dutch procurement agency ordered software-defined PNR-1000 radios for data and voice links from Elbit Systems for €45M. Modules for vehicle integration are also being procured for the portable digital radios which feature blue-force tracking for continuous display of own forces’ positions. The tactical computers described above support the operation of the radios.

Gerhard Heiming