WFEL Ltd., Stockport, Cheshire, United Kingdom, was awarded an $8,034,740 firm-fixed-price contract for retrofit kits for the Dry Support Bridge (DSB) system. The DSB is designed to provide armed forces with the ability to transport military equipment over obstacles and small water courses, and is also suitable for civilian applications. Work will be performed in Fort Hood, Texas; and Cheshire, UK, with an estimated completion date of Jan. 31, 2022. Fiscal 2020 other procurement (U.S. Army) funds in the amount of $8,034,740 were obligated at the time of the award. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Detroit Arsenal, Michigan, is the contracting activity.
Dry Support Bridge (DSB), a new-generation tactical military bridging system, is operational with the armed forces of the US, Turkey and Switzerland. It is built by WFEL, a subsidiary of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann, which is engaged in providing military and civil mobile bridge systems. The Dry Support Bridge has been delivered to the Armed Forces of the US since 2003, and the 100th delivery was made in November 2013. A £35m ($55.2m) order was placed by the US Department of Defense (DoD) for the supply of third batch in October 2010. The US DoD executed a £40m ($64.3m) contract for the fourth batch of bridge systems in April 2012.
The DSB is built using specially-made lightweight aluminium alloys. It can be deployed by eight crew members and launched within 90 minutes. Spanning up to 46m, the bridge can cover dry or wet gaps to provide improved operational flexibility. The longitudinal bank slope and lateral bank slopes of the bridge are 1:20 each. The bank heights of the bridge vary between -3m and 3m and the road width is 4.3m. The bridge has a load rating of class MLC 80 (military load classification) for tracked vehicles and class MLC 96 for wheeled vehicles. The DSB’s maximum load rating for wheeled vehicles is MLC 120. It can operate in temperatures ranging from -46°C to 49°C.
The DSB is equipped with a 4,417kg parallel module, 4,080kg ramp module, 357kg end beam, and 86kg approach ramp. The DSB can be carried on a 39,410kg vehicle, measuring 12m in length, 2.98m in width and 3.985m in height. The launch vehicle has a road speed of 88km/h and a cross country speed of 30km/h. Its approach and departure angles are 40°C and 60°C, respectively. The 46m configuration is provided with a 46m bridge system together with a launcher with trailer, and three support vehicles with trailers. It allows construction of a 46m bridge, two 30m bridges and either one 36m bridge or one 24m bridge.