Russian tanks and their foreign competitors

Russian tanks and their foreign competitors

In discussions of armaments and military equipment has a measured one trend. At some point, they all boil down to a comparison of some models of weapons with competing products. This trend is completely understandable and explainable. Only here the comparison is done often enough in unusual ways, and comparing themselves often simply do not understand the subject of conversation.

In the past few months, thanks to a series of statements Russian generals, again began arguing about the benefits and shortcomings of Russian tanks in comparison with zabugornom. And sometimes the disputants reach very fascinating things. Try to understand how costs associated tanks, as — no, that is also one way or the other benefits of armored vehicles.

First, it is necessary to pay attention to driving properties tanks. Often compared only reference characteristics of what is called, in the hothouse criteria. Of course, the parameter «maximum speed of the tank on the highway» is a certain enthusiasm, but he apparently is insufficient to assess the ability of this armored car. We can also add the type and power of the motor.

For example, one time more promising type of propulsion system for the tank at home and abroad was considered a gas turbine engine. And, although he is able to give great power, if diesels the same weight and size characteristics. Immediately this GTE enormous power consumes markedly less fuel. But with all this similar powerplant has just indecorous fuel consumption in the absence of a long-time work in one mode.

Russian tanks and their foreign competitors

Tanks T-80BV. Educational-methodical gathering of the Western Military Area, 138th Infantry Brigade, Leningrad Oblast. May 2011 (photo — Alexander Pak)

In addition, tangible gains in fuel consumption at GTE is comparable only with enormous capacities. In other cases, the consumption of fuel leads to a tank that receives the corresponding additional fuel tanks, as T-80. On the other hand, gas turbine engines have the smallest dimensions in comparison with the same diesel power and least demanding of the clean air supplied to them.

As a result, the type of power plant rather not pick up the dictionary definitions of the judgment, and the economic aspect of the operation and its criterion. For example, for Russian criterion are applicable as diesel tanks and gas turbines, and we look to the Russian armored units.

As for the power of the motor (which is one of the main reasons for the experiments with GTE), many people believe that the bigger it is, the better. In principle, there is a reasonable grain. But the best power density of the motor — this parameter refers to the ratio of engine power and combat weight of the tank — drags not only increase running hell, and a huge burden on the mechanisms and greater fuel consumption.

Opinions on the permissible power density characteristics of the tank is constantly changing. At the moment, the recommended value for this parameter lies within the boundaries of 20-30 hp / ton To be seen in a number of circumstances and Russian, and zabugornye tank builders occasionally manages to raise the power density above 25 horsepower per ton.

For example, the specific power of the T-90A is approximately equal to 21.7, while the South American Abrams and German Leopard 2A6M does not exceed 24 hp / ton With all this at the expense of the lowest mass combat Russian tank noticeably loses only at the higher speed and throughput for all 3 cars approximately similar.

Russian tanks and their foreign competitors

Modern tank in its composition has not only the engine, box and caterpillars. Chassis is, first, to set the platform arms. And weapons is more, and that part of the principal and more than tanka.V a long time the main indicator of the combat effectiveness of the tank was the caliber of the gun. With the passage of time, thanks to the emergence of new, more modern weapons systems, increased caliber reached values ​​of about 120-125 mm and braked on it.

Beginning with the 60-ies of the last century, when the caliber tank guns reached the modern values, accuracy, efficiency and range of fire was transferred to the «duty» ammunition and fire control systems. The range of all modern tanks comes several types of shells from high-explosive armor-piercing to piercing feathered. But restrictions on the caliber and, as a consequence, by weight of the powder charge in the cartridge, as flatness of the trajectory of the projectile firing range limits.

Most modern tanks have occasionally firing range of more than 4-4.5 km. For this purpose a few decades back the Russian engineers began to create anti-tank missiles, with the ability to run through the barrel of a tank gun. So Makar, in the case of T-90 tanks largest range of defeat armored vehicles rose to 5 km.

Russian tanks and their foreign competitors

Separate topic for debate is the automatic loader. Thanks to this exciting mechanism crew of Russian tanks have long fits the song from the movie «Tractor». With all this debaters on both sides fully and rightly mention pros and cons of automation. Naturally, automatic loading speeds and simplifies preparing to fire, which eventually leads to an increase rate of combat.

But it has several relevant negative traits. Thus, irrespective of whether the system has a finite capacity machine and it is almost always less than the total number of shots that can be loaded into the tank. Because in the already mentioned as an example of the T-90 autoloader can hold only 22 of the projectile from the 42. Upon exhaustion of supplies to the mechanics crew has cells without using a gun or other charge transfer of shells laying in cell autoloader that criteria in combat is far not the most comfortable and enjoyable affair.

In addition, often the autoloader Russian tanks compared with the laying of the American «Abrams». The fact that South American designers have positioned armored shells in a separate box, running sliding door. With this crew is in some measure protected from the detonation of ammunition. Lack of similar systems on Russian and Russian tanks on some views of professionals and amateurs of military equipment, reduces the possibility of the survival of the crew in the event of destruction of the tank. With all this, one must admit that the presence of long-range missiles comparable ammunition reduces the possibility of destruction of the tank and following the detonation of munitions.

Usually contrasted with the fire of the enemy tanks armor. Until that time it was enough just to increase its thickness, but later developed means of destruction to such an extent that the protected armored vehicle quite simply could not move because of its own weight. Initially appeared composite armor, and then active protection system.

Currently, active defense is the de facto standard for all modern tanks. According to the American concept of «onion layers» of protection of the tank, made in drafting the XM1202, active protection refers to the fourth layer — avoid falling. Again, available in the public domain properties of modern active protection systems that can be said about the shot at the end tank. This result, as well as countless other «elements» of modern warfare, will have a probabilistic nature. Naturally, no one voiced percent reliable destruction of ammunition flying up its own system of active protection.

After all, electronics. Modern technology simply unimaginable without electric computational tools, if only because of security unloading crew. First is to direct its attention to the tool management system (LMS). The operation of these systems is the most complex and immediately with the most demanding. MSA is to collect all available information, to shortchange her and instantly give «recommendations» by aiming.

Russian tanks and their foreign competitors

The T-90A 19th Motorized Rifle Brigade without side skirts, Vladikavkaz, North Ossetia, September 7, 2010 (photo — Denis Mokrushin)

Specifically for this purpose modern tank must have not only the sight, and a laser rangefinder, stabilization system, ballistic computer, and night vision devices. The latter provide not only driving comfort criteria in the night, and help create aiming at Nekhoroshev lighting at dusk or NIGHT MODE. We often hear that the Russian electronics very behind imported. In the case of tank equipment that statement is true only in part.

No direct analogues of consumer electronics does not prevent Russian tank designers equip their products systems, it is appropriate requirements. So, fire control 1A45T «Irtysh», mounted on tanks T-90, its composition has all the necessary equipment to work. For example, a laser range finder allows you to define complex distance to the target in the range from 400 to 5000 meters, which is sufficient for reliable tracking targets at ranges of shot.

In addition, the same laser device and is used for aiming guided anti-tank missiles. Immediately it is impossible not to recognize that the thermal sight of the Belarusian production «Essa» in her features a little inferior zabugornye analogues, first in visual range. Naturally, all the backlog of 1st device seems not something fatal, but in practice, the fate of the combat vehicle can decide no matter what detail.

Noteworthy that the lag in some areas the Russian tank builders and their allied counterparts compensate other things. Specifically for example, Russian tanks were the first to be equipped with steel complexes optoelectronic oppression. Already in the late 80’s it became clear that the main danger for the tanks are guided munitions, including air and induced by a laser beam.

Russian tanks and their foreign competitors

Complex EIA «Blind-1» detects induced by laser beams and tank, depending on the direction of the danger, makes shooting aerosol grenades that hides the tank and radiation enemy targeting system. Also in the «Curtains-1» has two infrared illuminator. They do flare, on its own modulation similar IR tracers antitank missiles BGM-71 TOW, HOT, Milan etc. types.

Due to the massive light spot covering the tank, anti-tank complex control equipment can not find the position of the missile, which leads to a significant reduction in the probability of a successful hit. Besides the protective function infrared illuminator system «Blind-1» may be used for the operation of other systems, for example, for IR illumination at night criteria.

As we see, a number of features and building constructive disposition simply do not allow any crank revolution in tanks. Because modern Russian armored vehicles continue to be direct competitors zabugornyh. It should be added tactical information and nuance of modern warfare: even a substantial an advantage over the enemy’s own technology does not give tribute to the result without providing communication between departments and timely transfer of the desired disk imaging.

Because once the creation of new tanks — principal, whether they are «independent» or on a single platform — more attention should be paid to the means of communication and control. In the unlikely event all the shortcomings and gaps will not be offset by the positive aspects and positive aspects, in turn, will not allow any utility.

Kirill Ryabov

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