Centurion (tank)

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Centurion Mk3
TeepMain battle tank
Place o oreeginUnitit Kinrick
Service history
In service1946–present (derivatives still in service)
WarsKorean War
Suez Crisis
Indo-Pakistani War of 1965
Six-Day War
Indo-Pakistani War of 1971
War of Attrition
Yom Kippur War
Vietnam War
South African Border War
Operation Motorman (AVRE)
Falklands War (BARV)
Gulf War (AVRE)
Production history
Unit cost£35,000 (1950), £38,000 (1952)[1]
No. biggit4,423[2]
Wecht51 long ton (52 t)
Weenth11 ft 1 in (3.38 m) wi side plates
Hicht9 ft 10.5 in (3.01 m)
Crew4 (commander, gunner, loader, driver)

Airmour51–152 mm
105 mm L7 rifled gun
20 pdr (84mm) rifled gun
17 pdr (76.2mm) rifled gun
Co-axial .30 cal Browning machine gun
IngineRolls-Royce Meteor; 5-speed Merrit-Brown Z51R Mk. F gearbox
650 hp (480 kW)
Pouer/wecht13 hp/t (9.2 kW/t)
SuspensionHorstmann suspension
Grund clearance1 ft 8 in (50.8 cm)
50 mile (80 km) Mk 2/Mk 3[3]
Speed22 mph (35 km/h)

The Centurion wis the primar British main battle tank o the post-Warld War II period. Introduced in 1945, it is aft thocht tae be ane o the maist successfu post-war tank designs, remainin in production intae the 1960s, an seein combat in the front lines intae the 1980s. The chassis wis adaptit for seeveral ither roles, an thay hae been keppit in service tae this day.

Development o the Centurion began in 1943 wi manufacture beginnin in Januar 1945. Six prototypes arrived in Belgium less nor a month efter the war in Europe ended in Mey 1945. It wis first uised in combat wi the Breetish Airmy in the Korean War in 1950, in support o the UN forces. The Centurion later serrt in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, whaur it focht agin US-supplied M47 an M48 Patton tanks an it serrt wi the Royal Australian Armoured Corps in Vietnam.

Israel uised Centurions in the 1967 Sax-Day War, 1973 Yom Kippur War, an durin the 1978 an 1982 invasions o Lebanon. Centurions modified as armoured personnel carriers war uised in Gaza City, the Wast Baunk an on the Lebanese mairch. The Tyal Jordanian Land Force uised Centurions, first in 1970 tae fend aff a Syrian incursion athin its mairches durin the Black September events an later in the Golan Heichts in 1973. Sooth Africae] deployed its Centurions in Angola durin the Sooth African Mairch War.[4]

It became ane o the maist widely uised tank designs, equippin armies athort the warld, wi some still in service til the 1990s.[5] As recent as the Israel–Lebanon conflict, the Israel Defence Forces uised hivily modified Centurions as armoured personnel carriers an combat ingineerin vehicles. The Sooth African National Defence Force still employs ower 200 Centurions, that war modernised in the 1980s an 2000s as the Olifant.

Atween 1946 an 1962, 4,423 Centurions war produced, consisting of 13 basic marks an numerous variants. In the British Airmy it wis replaced bi the Chieftain Tank.

References[eedit | eedit soorce]

  1. Emrys, Hughes. "Mr". millbanksystems. millbanksystems. Archived frae the original on 17 Juin 2016. Retrieved 21 Mey 2016. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)
  2. "Centurion (A41) - Main Battle Tank - History, Specs and Pictures - Military Tanks, Vehicles and Artillery". Archived frae the original on 28 November 2014. Retrieved 15 November 2014. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)
  3. Simon Dunstan, "Centurion Universal Tank 1943–2003" Archived 27 Februar 2015 at the Wayback Machine, Osprey Publishing, 2003, p. 5, 14.
  4. Scholtz, Leopold (2013). The SADF in the Border War 1966–1989. Cape Town: Tafelberg. ISBN 978-0-624-05410-8.
  5. Antill, P. (23 Februar 2001). "Centurion tank". historyofwar.org. Archived frae the original on 6 Februar 2012. Retrieved 23 October 2011. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)