Arca II Ashurbanipal
|Arca. II Ashurbanipal Light Battle Tank|
|Armour and armament|
|Armour||ca. 500mm RHAe vs. KE; ca. 1,000mm vs. CE|
|Main armament||105mm HVP|
|Secondary armament|| 2x 7.92mm machineguns
|Power plant||Quasiturbine |
|Road speed||90 km/h|
The Arca. [ArmechCarrier in Dienstadi] II Ashurbanipal was first envisioned during a competition devised by the military of Willink, and the final decision to research and design the Ashurbanipal was made after the fiasco of the Battle of La Gloria, during the War of Golden Succession, in Zarbia. The Ashurbanipal was envisioned as a light and fast alternative to the Arca. I Cougar, the mainstay battle tank of the Ejermacht, perfect for the jungle warfare which had rendered the Cougar useless at La Gloria. In fact, the majority of the Cougars deployed to fight Zarbian armour in the area had been stopped, not by Zarbian gunnery, but by the mud and rain of the jungle. In other words, an alternate, lighter design was imperative. The Ejermacht had opted for the procurement of more Wolverines, but the design was simply too heavy, and Kriegzimmer itched for a new armoured design to compliment the Arca. I, and the soon to come Arca. IV. The Wolverine had also faced bad press after their inability to stop the Weigari encirclement of three Waffen-SS divisions at the First Battle of Mons Dei, which had effectively ended their service within the ranks of the Ejermacht, although the last Wolverine was not decomissioned until early 2017.
Combat operations, especially in the Macabee doctrine of war, have always expressed the need for a light tank variant, and this became even more obvious after La Gloria and the First Battle of Mons Dei. Operation Diadem, which marked the operation into Zarbia, August 2016, saw the demise of the claimed invincibility of the Arca. I Cougar MBT, although the same tank preformed wonderfully at the Battle of Mosnoi Bor, at the Gates of Hell, and at Ishme-Dagan. Nevertheless, even during the first days of Operation Diadem the advance was slowed due to tanks entrenching themselves in the mud, and having to be pulled out, during the effort to break the Zarbian army the armoured fist was invariably stalled by tanks sinking into the jungle's turf, allowing some Zarbian units to escape. It was only through the tenacity of Macabee infantry and infantry fighting vehicles that La Gloria did not turn into a total debacle. Although the battle was won, it did seriously hamper the velocity of the invasion, and it would ultimately spell the death to many men, most of which would succumb to the diseases of Zarbia.
On 17 August, 2016, Kriegzimmer's top armoured engineers, most of which had worked on the Cougar, met at Choybalsan to discuss the future of light armour. The conference would last until 24 August, 2016, and it would set the perameters for the Ashurbanipal project. The first units of the Ashurbanipal rolled off the production line on 9 March 2017, being put into battle sometime later. The Ashurbanipal is envisioned to remain in service well into the 30s and 40s. By January 2018 the Ejermacht had procured some three thousand Arca. IIs, spread over fifteen cavalry divisions, as opposed to the heavier, much more concentrated, armour divisions. Although there are proponents of using the Ashurbanipal and the Cougar together, the Ejermacht has opted not to, and instead reserve each for their specific use - depending on the foe and terrain. In any case, the Ejermacht has expressed that if combined arms is necessary, the two divisions can act in cooperation, as opposed to merging both into one - or how many divisions may be in question.
The main armament of the Arca II Ashurbanipal is a 105mm high velocity projectile cannon, chosen over the electro-thermal chemical cannon used on the Wolverine. The gun is fully rifled, being considered more of an infantry support tank, as opposed to a tank meant to successfully stand up against heavier armoured designs, although the magnum configuration of the propellant does not make it totally worthless in that respect. The gun is forty calibres long, comming to a length of 4.2 meters, and is fed by a 'rifle clip' autoloader, which holds forty explosively formed penetrators [EFP],for anti-tank work, or simple high explosive [HE] shells. The total length of the tank, including the gun parallel to the ground, comes to 12.6 meters. The main gun provides a powerful service for infantry support, and can hold its own in anti-armour warfare.
Secondary armament includes two 7.92mm heavy machineguns, the first being placed as an independent armament on the rear of the turret, used by the commander, and the other, for the driver, placed at the front. The main gun is also supplimented with a 12.7mm co-axial machinegun, used by the gunner. The turret also holds a small 40mm automatic grenade launcher, used to fire mostly illumination rounds, although it also offers fire suppression services. The gun is blowback operated, and air-cooled, offering a rate of fire of sixty grenades per minute, being belt fed, with a maximum range of 2,200 meters.
The Ashurbanipal offers 200mm of real thickness chobham, offering up to 450mm of rolled homogenous armour equivalent on the turret, and 400mm on the glacis, with around 200mm on the side, and finally, 150mm on the rear. On top of this, the Ashurbanipal features an insulation layer, which allows for an independent reaction for the final top layer of enhanced appliqué armor kit [EAAK]. Although relatively heavy for a light tank, it is all built within the context of ultra modern main battle tanks, which sometimes feature over thousand millimeters of RHAe for KE threats. The Arca. II should give a maximum protection of around 500mm RHAe against KE threats, and around 1000mm against CE threats, which gives it ample protection against small time, yet still deadly, threats like the more modern rocket propelled grenades.
The principle sensor on the Arca. II is the the intigrated infra-red camera, with millimetric wave radar, along with a standard foward looking infra-red [FLIR] rangefinder. This allows for near automatic target recognition and identification, which is displayed on a series of liquid crystal displays, seen by both the gunner and the commander, which also makes use of Multi Function Laser-Based DAS for greater target identification. The commander can also make use of a 360-degree panospheric imaging system, using a retractable photonic camera. This offers a more interactive camera system for the tank, although there are eight other photonic cameras embedded along the tank's chassis and turret to allow for a three hundred and sixty degree view around the tank.
Both the command and the driver function on a fully interactive display of targets, while the commander also has an ample informative screen on his sorroundings, as well as a helmet mounted display, fed by the 360-degree panospheric imaging system. In other words, reaction time for the commander, gunner and driver, alike, has been increased with an improvement of the tank's sensors and electronic systems. All three also have the ability of nightsight and thermal imaging, which was especially important in a dark, jungle-like enviroment.
The Ashurbanipal makes use of a 700 break-horsepower quasiturbine engine, providing sufficient power for a velocity of up to ninety kilometers per hour on-road, and about seventy-five kilometers off-road, and finally around twenty kilometers per hour on reverse.
|Main Battle Tanks: | ARAY | Caprelli | Carrion | AY1-1A Arctos | AY2-1B Panthera Uncia | AY2-1E Panthera Tigris | AY2-1L Panthera Leo | ChallengerTCN 2 | Chuck Norris | Cougar | Crusader | Dreyden | Galm | Geraldric | Guardian | Kodiak | Luxorhynchus | Ma-54 | Mekhev | Merina | Ocnus | Phalanx | Punisher | Red Cloud | Sabre | Salamander | Saracen | Indigenschen | Scorpion (Phoenix Militia) | Scorpion (Noders) | Smilodon | Stadtholder | T-10 | T-12 | T-140 | Talon | TK-17 | Type 42 | Type 97 | Viper | Warrior | Warspider | W-IV | Z-34|
|Light Tanks: | Ashurbanipal | Borhyena | Colonial (Light) | Grozynj | Otter | Predator | T-8 Sprite|
|Heavy Tanks: | AAV-10 | Colonial (Heavy) | Lion/Puma | Megalania | Merkava VK | Samson | Scorpion | T-2 Savage | T-11 | Type 40|
|Super-Heavy Tanks: | Morrigan|