The Royal Netherlands Army is set to procure new chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) reconnaissance vehicles for its fleet.
The development follows after Netherlands State Secretary Barbara Visser sent a letter to the lower house about the implementation of the Replacement CBRN Detection, Identification and Monitoring project.
As stated in the 2018 defence white paper ‘Investing in Our People, Capabilities and Visibility’, Fuchs reconnaissance vehicles equipped with CBRN detection will be replaced to strengthen defence against similar threats.
The armed forces currently has 12 Fuchs armoured wheel vehicles for CBRN reconnaissance. They are expected to reach the end of their operational lifespan in the next few years.
The Netherlands Ministry of Defence intends to buy 12 new CBRN reconnaissance vehicles, in addition to the possible acquisition of an extra backup system. This would help protect the crew against all modern threats.
However, before acquiring the new vehicles, the country intends to look for the possibility of cooperation with international companies.
New reconnaissance capabilities will enable the Royal Netherlands Army to effectively detect and identify all CBRN-relevant substances.
Detection equipment must be installed and operated from remote locations in order to ensure the safety of soldiers.
The independent Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) Institute provides the country with important knowledge in the fields of chemical and biological weapons.
CBRN research and operational training is already being carried out by the Netherlands Ministry of Defence in collaboration with Germany.
The new Replacement CBRN Detection, Identification and Monitoring project will continue until 2022.
In addition to the Netherlands, the Belgian Armed Forces also intends to replace its CBRN exploration capacity in the next ten years.