ZSU-based tanks

Thought anti-aircraft guns on self-propelled chassis is old enough. The first self-propelled anti-aircraft guns on the platform appeared during the First World War and in the years of the second world war, they got wide distribution. Particular success in the development of ZSU have gained the Germans, who created a huge number of different anti-aircraft guns on a mobile platform. They have started to use the chassis of mass production tanks Pz4 for the installation of a tower of different options with anti-aircraft guns. So at the end of the war small batches at the front were ZSU «Wirbelwind» (4×20-mm guns) and «Ostwind» (1h37-mm tool). After the war, the idea anti-aircraft guns on the chassis of the future development of tanks received. Further in the article we make out three ZSU made on the basis of main battle tanks: Soviet ZSU-57-2, German ZSU "Cheetah" and in a certain kind of exotic Finnish ZSU T-55 "Shooter."

ZSU-57-2 (USSR)

In 1947, the Soviet Union under the control of the designer VG Grabin started to develop the twin 57-mm automatic anti-aircraft gun S-68, developed on the basis of the C-60 and set up for installation on a wheeled or tracked chassis. With all of this from the wheel installation option declined, leaving only the crawler. As the base was taken medium tank T-54, the car has received the title of article 500, and in the army ordering ZSU-57-2.

ZSU-57-2 consists of a lightly armored tracked vehicle having a revolving tower, which would allow the radial anti-aircraft fire from automatic guns. Armored hull was divided into three departments: administration, military and power. Branch Office has left the bow of the hull. It was taken the place of the driver. The fighting compartment was in the middle of the hull and the iconic, power department was located in the stern and was separated from the military special broneperegorodkoy. Housing welded from light armor plates in width 8-13 mm. The crew consisted of 6 members: driver, commander, gunner, gunner installer run, 2-charging for each of the guns, they are not counting the driver housed in the tower.

ZSU-based tanks
German ZSU «Wirbelwind» since the second world war

Open at the top tower was welded and was located on a ball bearing on the cut-sheet roof turret housing. To install the tools in the front of the case were 2 loopholes. The back wall of the tower had a window to the ejection and was made removable for easy installation tools. In the stowed position on top of the tower was locked folding canvas awning, in which 13 were mounted plexiglass viewing windows.

Automatic twin gun S-68 consisted of a 2-automatic C-60, holding a similar device. With all of this right machine parts were mirror images of parts of the left. The mechanism of the automation was to use energy efficiency in the small recoil of the gun barrel. Practical rate of fire of 100-120 rounds per gun. But in practice, the duration of continuous shooting was 40-50 shots, then it was necessary to cool the gun.

Buddy was equipped with an automatic gun, anti-aircraft gun postroitelnogo type. This sight was designed for solving the problem, by definition, purpose venue with a projectile in the conduct of fire. For this we previously had to find and bring into sight the following data: the speed of the target (determined by the type of aircraft), heading angle (determined by the direction of motion appears to target) and slant range (determined by eye or by using the EDM).

Ammunition of the anti-aircraft gun consisted of 300 unitary shots that were located in special combat pack in the hull and turret. Much of the ammunition (248 rounds) before loading into the ZSU filled with a cage and placed in the tower (176 shots) and the bow of the hull (72 shots). The remaining 52 shots in the cage did not fit and were stored in a compartment located under the rotating floor of the tower. Equipped with a cage shots with armor-piercing shells were placed at the rear of the tower on the right and left of the machine gun. Submission of clips to charge the guns carried by hand.

ZSU-based tanks
ZSU-57-2

ZSU-57-2 was equipped with a 12-cylinder, V-shaped, four-stroke, liquid-cooled diesel engine. Diesel engine has an output of 520 hp and broke up the installation on the highway to 50 km / h The engine was installed perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the gun mount on a special pedestal, which was welded to the bottom of the housing. The working volume of the motor equated 38.88 liters, and its weight is 895 kg.

The machine is equipped with three fuel tanks with a total capacity of 640 liters., Pots were placed inside the housing. Additional external tanks with a capacity of 95 liters. established the right while ZSU-fender, supplies, travel was 400-420 km. on the highway. Manual transmission with a stepped configuration of the gear ratios was in the rear of the hull. It included a five-speed gearbox, the main clutch dry friction, the two planetary rotation mechanism, two airborne transmission compressor and fan.

Outside link ZSU-57-2 was carried out using radio 10RT-26E, and the inner tank through an intercom TPU-47. Mounted on self-propelled radios provide reliable communication while driving at a distance of 7-15 km., And when stopped at a distance of 9-20 km.

ZSU "Cheetah" (Germany)

First, the 60-ies of the last century, the Bundeswehr interested in the possibility of the creation of the modern gun mount, which was able to fight the enemy aircraft at any time of the day. During the development of the designers and the military have suspended their own choices on the modified chassis of the main battle tank Leopard 1 and twin 35-mm gun mounts. Made fighting machine 5PZF-B, also liked the armies of Belgium and the Netherlands. In the end, the Bundeswehr ordered 420 ZSU 5PZF-B «Cheetah» Netherlands 100 5PZF-C, equipped with their own radar, and Belgium 55 cars.

ZSU-based tanks
ZSU "Cheetah"

ZSU "Cheetah", having armed with paired 35-mm anti-aircraft guns, intended to combat low-flying air targets at slant ranges from 100 to 4000 meters and at altitudes up to 3,000 meters, which fly at speeds of up to 350-400 m / sec. Installation can also be used to combat ground targets at a distance of 4500 m ZSU intended to cover the Bundeswehr mechanized units on the march in open terrain with difficult terrain. Implementation of the tasks could not be better promoted tank chassis "Leopard", which was put into the database "Cheetah". ZSU entered service in 1973.

Housing ZSU "Cheetah" had similarities with the case of main battle tank "Leopard 1", but had facilitated booking. The main difference is the optional engine with a capacity of 71 kW, which was used to power electrical equipment installation. Place the driver was placed in front of the right, to his left was the auxiliary power installation
, tower located in the housing and MSW in the feed. The car had a suspension torsion type, consisting of 7 double rollers and 2 supporting, guiding and leading position at the rear wheels. Search radar mounted at the rear part of the tower, if necessary can be folded. Radar tracking of targets placed in front of the tower.

Artillery part of the "Cheetah" consists of 2-35-mm guns, Oerlikon KDA and double belt feed mechanism that allows you to fire missiles of various types. The guns mounted in the iconic radial rotation and can be induced in the vertical plane in the sector from -5 ° to +85 °. Drive hundred percent electronic instruments, but in the event of failure of the mechanical drives are available and hum. The overall rate of fire setting is 1100 shots per minute (550 per gun).

Every gun has a special sensor that determines the initial velocity of the projectile, then transferring the data side OMS. Ammunition of the installation consists of 680 shots, of which 40 are piercing. To change the type of ammunition, the gunner only needs a few seconds. Spent cartridges are removed in the process of firing gun. The gunner can install without the help of other shooting modes as required, and conduct fire single shots or bursts of 5 or 15 shots, or continuous burst. When firing at air targets shooting range does not exceed 4 km. Additionally ZSU "Cheetah" is equipped with 2 units of smoke grenades (grenade launcher to 4 each), which are mounted on the sides of the tower.

ZSU-based tanks
ZSU T-55 "Shooter"

"Cheetah" is equipped with 2 radar station — station target detection MPDR-12 and radar target tracking "Albis". Range of their actions is 15 km. In the second half of the 70-ies of the last century in Germany was also designed new version of the radar target detection MPDR-18S, which owns the detection range of 18 km. Both radars operate independently of each other, allowing you to perform maintenance independently chosen to bombard targets and the search for new aerial objects. For firing the criteria of strong electronic suppression of the commander and gunner machines are scopes with 1.5 and 6 fold increase.

After the target appeared on the screen, it is identification. In this case, if it's a plane, it begins to look for him radar target tracking, located in the tower. If need this radar can be rotated 180 °, having covered it, so Makarov from the impact debris. Pointing guns at the target machine is, at the moment when the target comes into the affected area, the crew ZSU receiving a respective signal and opens fire, such mode allows you to conserve ammo. On a full recharge shops guns need about 20 to 30 minutes.
ZSU "Cheetah" with navigation equipment, communications equipment, anti-nuclear and anti-chemical means of protection, as a mechanism of automatic driving cars from traveling into the firing position. Some machines armed with laser rangefinders ball from Siemens.

ZSU T-55 "Shooter" (Finland)

ZSU T-55 "Shooter" came into being as a result of the cooperation of several recognizable cramped European companies. The system has been fully developed by the Italian company "Marconi", which specifically put your radar for the ZSU. The main armament were used Swiss 35-mm automatic cannon Oerlikon, the same set on the German "Cheetah". The basis for the ZSU became the T-55AM Polish production. In the Finnish army this ZSU received index ItPsv 90, where 90 is the year of the adoption of ZSU on arms. The machine is quite efficient, the percentage of damage to her goals is estimated at 52.44%, which is the very highest performance for this kind of machines.

The concept of combat module, used for ZSU, was developed in England in the 90s vulgar century. This module can be mounted on tank chassis Chieftain, but the British Army ZSU this was not needed. With all of this made the module can be installed into a large number of different chassis tanks: new Challenger, export Vickers Mk3, an old Centurion, South American M48, German Leopard 1, Russian T-55, Chinese Type 59, and even the South African G6. But the fit was just an option to install on the chassis modifications Polish T55 — T55AM. Finland has ordered the army to its own 7 of these machines.

ZSU-based tanks
ZSU T-55 "Shooter"

The main purpose of the T-55 ZSU "Shooter" — a struggle against low-flying aircraft, helicopters and UAVs opponent. The effective range is 4 km away. With all of this radar station of the Marconi Company in a position to pinpoint targets at a distance of 12 km, to make monitoring them from a distance of 10 km and 8 km. include a laser rangefinder. Rate of fire guns at 18 shots per second (9 rounds per gun). In addition to the main armament any ZSU equipped with 8 smoke grenades.

In addition to anti-air targets, set in a position to strike and lightly armored ground targets, to do this it has 40 armor-piercing ammunition shells. Total ammo T ZSU-55 "Shooter" consists of 500 rounds. Machine made came out quite easy. It greatly overshadowed own donor — medium tank T-55. Unlike T-55AM, which weighs 36 tons, ZSU -55 "Shooter" has a mass of 41 tonnes. Increasing the mass of the machine led the developers to force the engine to 620 hp (Rated motor power T-55AM is 581 hp).

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