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GD awarded tank contract

June 30, 2001

IMPERIAL — Next year employees at the General Dynamics Land Systems plant here will be manufacturing electronic components for bridge-launching tanks.

General Dynamics Land Systems recently was awarded a $24.6 million contract to build eight bridge-launching tanks for the U.S. Army Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command, according to a GDLS press release.

The bridge-launching tanks, called Wolverines, are "basically tanks without a turret. In place of the turret is a bridge-launcher with a long 85-foot aluminum bridge," according to General Dynamics spokesman Pete Keating.

Electronic wiring for the system will be manufactured at the Imperial plant, he said.

Wolverines enable battalions of armored vehicles to cross obstacles such as anti-tank ditches and creeks.

"They are brand new. They replace a 40-year-old bridge launcher that is not as fast on the modern battlefield," he added.


Assembly of the Wolverines is done at the General Dynamics-operated plant in Lima, Ohio, from components fabricated at plants in Eynon, Pa., Muskegon, Mich., Tallahassee, Fla., and Imperial, according to a GDLS press release.

"They're (Imperial employees) doing some of the work now so they've already hired the people to do the work," said Keating.

Production of the Wolverines will start in March 2002 at a rate of one per month.

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