Australian firm Birdon has received a contract to deliver two bridge erection boats (BEBs) for the Brazilian Army.
The capability is used to manage and build a floating ribbon (pontoon) to provide a temporary overpass for tactical vehicles. Integration of additional sections into the boat enables users to transport assets across open water.
Their key function includes the NAMJet rugged waterjet propulsion with a high thrust to sustain speeds up to 35 knots (65 kilometers/40 miles per hour).
The platform’s corresponding functions require only two operators in salt, fresh, and seawater.
Under Birdon’s latest contract, Brasilia will receive parts and training with the boats.
Moreover, the company will supply new BEB configurations to the army, such as the custom winch system, to enhance efficiency while securing the crew during missions.
Birdon wrote that the award represents its fourth and fifth BEB handover to the service.
“Birdon BEBs operate flawlessly in the toughest environments we put them in, and that’s why the Brazilian Army is putting their trust in our products again and again,” Birdon Group Bridging and Propulsion Head Martyn Bowden stated.
“We are really pleased that we are able to increase the capability of the boats through the development of technology like winches.”
“It’s another progression for the platform which is able to be retrofitted on previous iterations of the BEB and that is something we always strive for when designing new equipment.”
Alongside the Brazilian Army, Birdon has provided BEB platforms for the US Army and Australian Army.
The boat’s design and manufacturing take place at the firm’s production facility in northeast Denver, which has delivered over 450 BEBs to customers.
Bridge Boats for Amsterdam
Last year, Birdon teamed with industry partner General Dynamic European Land Systems to provide the Netherlands Armed Forces with BEBs on top of three wide gap crossing systems and bridge adaptor belts.
“Following our success with the Australian, Brazilian and US Bridging Programs, we have been working with end users globally to further develop the requirements for… combat and peacetime operations,” Birdon Group CEO Jamie Bruce said during the project’s announcement.
“The latest BEB will incorporate experience gained from our ongoing R&D program and we are extremely excited that the Netherlands Ministry of Defense will be receiving the most capable and advanced combined bridging system in the world.”