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   Some information about BTR-90, from 2 articles posted on Warspot (First, Second, in Russian)


   At the end of the 80s it became clear that in a large armed conflict, the Soviet motorized rifle units would lack the firepower available to the main infantry transport - the BTR-80 APC. The presence of two machine guns - 14.5 mm KPVT and 7.62 mm PKT - no longer allowed to solve all the fire tasks that could arise in front of the mechanized infantry division. First of all, the impossibility of fighting with modern armored targets, the only means of destruction of which was the RPG-7 of a regular grenadier. This was understood in the Design Bureau of the Gorky Automobile Plant, therefore, in the mid-80s, search work began to form a promising armored personnel carrier.



BTR-90 next to a BTR-80A at the IDELF-2008.



   The ideology behind new APC belonged to Alexander Grigorievich Masyagin. In 1989, a preliminary design of a new APC was created. The main objective was the creation of a combat vehicle with fire capabilities and protection at the level of modern infantry fighting vehicles. A prerequisite was the presence of a rapid-firing automatic gun and anti-tank missile system. The project was submitted to the Main Armored Directorate, where the idea was approved: experimental design work was opened to create a future wheeled armored combat vehicle. The design work was named "Rostok".


   The layout of the new APC did not differ from the BTR-80: a four-axis armored amphibious vehicle with a front crew compartment, a compartment in the middle for dismounts and a rear-placed engine.

   Armor in the frontal projection provided protection against small-caliber artillery shells [autocannons], on the sides - against heavy machine guns, and from the rear - against armor-piercing bullets of 7.62 mm caliber. It was decided to take the weapon complex with the fighting compartment from the BMP-2. This made it possible to bring an armored personnel carrier to the level of an infantry fighting vehicle by firepower, and also solved the issue of completing production vehicles, since the BMP-2 fighting compartment had been in large-scale production for several years. In addition, all plans to modernize the BMP-2 in terms of replacing the fighting compartment could be applied to the BTR-90. However, the use of such a fighting compartment entailed a significant increase in the size of the hull, since the number of dismounts of the APC remained the same - 10 people (commander, driver, gunner and seven motorized riflemen).


   The increase of the hull size, of course, led to an increase in mass, and immediately the question arose about the presence, or rather, the absence of a suitable engine. According to calculations, a 450–500 hp diesel unit was required, and there were only two of them: the Barnaul UTD-29, mass-produced for the BMP-3, and the Chelyabinsk 2V-06 for BMD-3 family vehicles. Both engines had their advantages and disadvantages, but no “extra" UTD-29 was expected, since in those years the plans for the production of BMP-3 were truly grandiose.


   The choice fell on the 2V-06-2M with power of 510 hp. It was a six-cylinder, four-stroke, multi-fuel liquid-cooled diesel engine with an opposed cylinder arrangement, direct fuel injection, gas turbine supercharging and intermediate intake air cooling. The machine used a hydromechanical transmission, which was quite unusual for wheeled vehicles, with a differential-type hydraulic volumetric rotation mechanism. The gear and turning mechanism worked in such a way that it was single-threaded with straight movement and double-threaded during vehicle turns. Power flows were distributed on the sides; this design was used before in special wheeled chassis of the SKSh135 family of development by V.A. Gracheva and serially not used anywhere else.


   Thanks to the use of this transmission scheme, it was possible to improve the controllability and maneuverability of the armored personnel carrier. On soft soils, it could turn around "like a tank", asimilar to neutral steering. On roads, an APC could move without decreasing speed in turns, since by what amount the output shaft speed of the outgoing side increased, the output shaft rotation frequency decreased by the same amount. The hydromechanical gearbox was reversible, which allowed the armored personnel carrier to move at the same speeds both forward and backward. This also greatly increased the maneuverability of the vehicle. The selection of power to the water jets and the hydraulic control pump for the transmission was carried out regardless of the choice of gear.



The first prototype BTR-90 at the exhibition in Nizhny Novgorod, 1994.








   The vehicle had great prospects - both in terms of modernization, and in terms of the use of the chassis for the installation of various weapons systems and equipment. Soviet Union disappeared from the map, and the new country began to exist in the midst of a deep economic crisis, which, of course, directly affected the military-industrial complex. For this reason, the first prototype of the new armored personnel carrier was built only in 1992, and in the summer of 1994 a second one appeared. In conditions of decreased funding, it was necessary to interest the leadership of the Ministry of Defense with a new machine.


   September 12, 1994 in Nizhny Novgorod opened the first and subsequently turned out to be the only international exhibition-fair “Arms. Military equipment. Conversion ”, which was supposed to show the leadership of the Ministry of Defense and potential customers the prospects and capabilities of the Russian defense industry complex, and especially the Nizhny Novgorod region. The then Minister of Defense P.S. Grachev, specially for whom literally for two hours they brought the 2nd prototype of a promising armored personnel carrier. APC name - BTR-90 - was also voiced there, although this was not worth talking about: it was very far from being adopted!


   The new armored personnel carrier, which received the designation GAZ-5923, made an impression: a huge 8x8 AFV with a BMP-2 turret, compared to the BTR-80 (BTR-90 was significantly larger than the BTR-80: in length by 475 mm, in width by 200 mm, and in height by as much as 600 mm) attracted many views. After being inspected by the Minister of Defense, factory workers quickly sheathed the Rostok, and quickly left the exhibition area. However, in the short time that the car was at the exhibition, the new armored personnel carrier was able to make an impression.


   The total mass of the GAZ-5923 increased by more than 7000 kg compared to its predecessor and reached 20 920 kg. The armament of the armored personnel carrier corresponded to the armament of the fighting compartment 675-sb119, mounted on the serial BMP-2. It consisted of a 30-mm 2A42 automatic gun with 500 rounds of ammunition. The following shells could be used: high-explosive incendiary 3UOF8, fragmentation-tracer 3UOT6 and armor-piercing tracer 3UBR. The feeding system allowed to use 2 belts: a belt for 340 rounds with fragmentation tracer and high-explosive fragmentation shells and 160 rounds with armor-piercing tracer. The 7.62 mm PKTM machine gun coaxial with the cannon had an ammunition load of 2,000 rounds.

   An electromechanical two-plane stabilizer 2E36-4 was installed in the turret. On the roof of the turret was installed the launcher 9P135M1 of the Konkurs anti-tank complex, which could fire guided missiles 9M111, 9M111M, 9M111-2 and 9M113. The ammunition consisted of four missiles, reloading was carried out manually. Inside the hull, places for the 9K34M MANPADS with two missiles, one PKM machine gun with an ammunition load of 1000 rounds, eight assault rifles, an RPG-7 grenade launcher with five shots to it, nine F-1 grenades and a signal pistol were provided.



The first prototype BTR-90 at the exhibition in Nizhny Novgorod, 1994.






   The gunner had a combined sight BPK-2-42, the commander had a day sight 1PZ-3 and night TKN-3B. OU-3GAM and OU-5 infrared spotlights were used as illuminators for night sights. The turret also housed the 902V smoke screen system consisting of six 81mm grenade launchers with 3D6 or 3D6M grenades. Means of observation consisted of 15 periscope observation devices TNPO-170A and two TNPT-1. For driving at night, the driver had a TVN-5 device. Communication facilities consisted of a VHF radio station R-173 and a tank intercom R-174 for five subscribers.





   The power was provided by a 950B power unit with a 2V-06-2M engine, a gear and rotation mechanism with an automatic gearbox AU9 - as well as an engine borrowed from the BMD-3, two transfer gearboxes, eight final drives and eight wheel gearboxes. The use of wheel reducers allowed to increase the clearance of the armored personnel carrier to 500-510 mm. The independent suspension was structurally similar to the BTR-80 suspension. Each wheel was suspended on two A-shaped wishbones. As elastic elements, longitudinal torsions were used. In the suspensions of the first and fourth pairs of wheels, two telescopic hydraulic shock absorbers were installed per wheel, in the others - one per wheel.

   Disk wheels, with a split rim and OI-25 tires of dimension 14R20, borrowed from the Ural-4320 truck. They had a system for regulating tire pressure and allowed to continue driving in the absence of excessive tire pressure. The steering with hydraulic booster worked on the wheels of the first and second axles.





   The transmission allowed to accelerate to 100 km/h on the highway and provided an average speed on dirt roads of up to 50 km/h. Movement afloat at a speed of 10 km/h was carried out using two hydro-jet high-pressure water cannons with a mechanical drive located in the rear of the hull. Turning on the water was carried out either by turning the wheels, or by turning off one of the water cannons. The fuel load was located in three tanks with a capacity of 660 liters - this provided a range of up to 800 km on the highway and up to 12 hours afloat.

   The armored personnel carrier was equipped with a NBS protection, means of decontamination and degassing, a system of automatic fire fighting equipment, and water-draining equipment.








   After showing at the exhibition, nothing has changed for the project. The Minister of Defense reacted positively to the promising armored personnel carrier, but the military did not have money. SKB employees were invited to develop the topic on their own - in the hope that in due time the money would appear and the experimental design work would be paid. Work on the topic of "Rostok" continued.



Second prototype during factory trails. Vehicle is "wearing" OI-25 tires.



   By the fall of 1994, the second and third Rostok samples were ready. They differed primarily in the combat compartment 675-sb120-01, in which the automatic grenade launcher AG-17 with an ammunition load of 250 grenades appeared. Such a fighting compartment was considered as an option to modernize the BMP-2 fleet - both for the Russian Armed Forces and for export. Also, the fighting compartment received a modernized sighting system for the gunner BPK-3-42, which, compared to the BPK-2-42, had increased vision ranges at night: in the passive mode, 800 meters versus 700 meters, and in the active mode - 1300 meters versus 800 meters. In active mode, this was achieved to a large extent by installing a new illuminator OU-6 instead of OU-5. The commander also received new sights: day 1PZ-13 with a net for firing from the AG-17, and night TKN-3MBK. The AG-17 grenade launcher was linked with a 2A42 cannon by thrust, which made it possible to target the entire complex of small arms.



Third prototype of the Rostok/GAZ-5923 with some changes from 2nd prototype, on factory trails.




Combat module 675sb120-01. On the front you can see BPK-3-42 gunner sight, in the center - the launcher of the Konkurs ATGM with the 9M113 missile, on the right - the AG-17 grenade launcher in armored cover



1PZ-13 sight in working position



Laser infrared illuminator OU-6







The third sample at the exhibition VTTV-1999 with reworked water jets, Omsk.



   From the third prototype, the GAZ-5923 acquired its own tires. The fact is that the OI-25 tires from Ural trucks installed on the first prototype were diagonal and had a pronounced tread pattern. For the combat vehicle, which has a "reverse" transmission, in the design bureau of the Kirov tire plant special tires KI-133 have been developed, which have a symmetrical tread pattern. These radial tires had greater reliability and durability, which was important for the armored personnel carrier. In addition, the durability of such tires was incomparably higher than that of ordinary cargo truck: KI-133 was not afraid of bullets and small fragments and allowed to drive with a complete loss of pressure up to 200 km.


   The wheel mover of the Rostok was notable for its enviable reliability and combat survivability: with some limitations, the vehicle could move with the loss of half the wheels. To immobilize the armored personnel carrier, it was necessary to drive out either all four wheels of one side, or all four wheels of two front or two rear axles, which was practically very hard to do.



Driver's position




BTR-90 No. 2B12LT1932, December 2004, at the MVSV-2008 exhibition. Turret 675-sb119 with a sight BPK-2-42, with a spall liner, but without AG-17















   The next two prototypes were made in 1997. Preliminary tests conducted, including at the Scientific Research Institute of BT, showed that the concept of the armored personnel carrier is correct and has sufficient modernization reserves.

   The fighting compartment was slightly raised, for which the height of the hull was increased in the area of the turret leaf. However, the fighting compartment of the BMP-2 is already morally obsolete, so the designers were looking for ways to improve the combat properties of the BTR-90. One of the directions was the use of the fighting compartment B08Ya01 "Bakhcha-U" developed by the Tula Instrument Design Bureau. The combat compartment was originally created to modernize the BMD-3 fleet. The weapons complex remained the same, but with an upgraded fire control system, as well as with the use of new ammunition.


   The welded turret of the new design had much better security from all angles. The gunner received sight with a thermal imaging channel and a laser range finder. The commander received a panoramic sight with an independent two-plane high-precision stabilization of the field of view. It was envisaged that FCS will receive a target tracker operating in thermal and television channels, new weapons stabilizer and a ballistic computer. This made it possible to increase the accuracy of firing - both on ground and on air targets.



BTR-90A with BM B08Ya01 "Bakhcha-U" at the show in Kubinka. 2002



   The fighting compartment turned out to be successful, the combat capabilities in comparison with the fighting compartment of the BMP-2 significantly increased. It was decided to study the use of “Bakhcha-U” on other media, one of which was the BTR-90. To accommodate the Bakhcha-U fighting compartment, it was necessary to raise the turret sheet even higher, as a result of which the height of the machine increased again. Tests at the AFV research institute in Kubinka showed that the combat capabilities of the BTR-90A, as the "BTR with Bahcha" (unofficial name), increased. There was an idea to offer an armored personnel carrier with a new combat module for export.








   In 2001, the BTR-90 with Bakhcha combat module was presented at the IDEX-2001 exhibition. Armored vehicle made a great impression on foreigners, since a wheeled armored personnel carrier with an armament from a full-fledged infantry fighting vehicle with a main gun of almost tank caliber, also armed with an automatic cannon and anti-tank missiles, promised great prospects. The Commander-in-Chief of the Army of the United Arab Emirates planned in the future to replace those purchased in 1992–2000. BMP-3, with new infantry fighting vehicles, preferably wheeled. BTR-90 with Bakhcha was more consistent with the concept of that new IFV.


   An agreement was reached on conducting comparative tests of the BTR-90 with competitors in the UAE. The first stage of the tests revealed that the KI-133 tires are not quite suitable for the desert. A set of Michelin tires 14R20 XZL TL was urgently delivered, after which the BTR-90 showed the best results of races in the sands. According to the results of tests in the UAE, Kuwait was also very interested in this new Russian APC, for which they developed a fairly extensive test program - in particular, the question even was raised whether it is possible to use air conditioning together with a system of protection against weapons of mass destruction. However, for various reasons, things did not come to real trials in Kuwait.


   The export capabilities of the BTR-90 were very large. The issue of mounting the double launcher of the Konkurs ATGMs, Konkurs-M ATGM, TKN-AI commander commander, PNK-2-42 sight for the gunner was studied. At the request of the customer, it was possible to install the combat information and control system BIUS-1, the Shtora-1 defense system against high-precision weapons, the air conditioner of the Japanese company Sanden, communications equipment of the R-168 family or foreign versions.



Export version of the two missile launcher for Konkurs ATGM



   In the following vehicle models, spaced armor was installed to increase the level of protection. Its use has significantly increased the protection of the hull - in the first place, from HEAT ammunition. The use of additional armor on the back of the hull led to the fact that the covers of the water jet outlet openings turned out to be blocked. As a result, the water cannons were taken out of the hull and placed in separate armored covers. This reduced the turning radius afloat, and also reduced the likelihood of siltation of the inlet paths of the jet propellers in marshy ponds. In subsequent modifications, spaced reservations, water cannons, BIUS, as well as the Trona-1 satellite navigation system became standard.



BTR-90 No. 2B12LT1931 of December 2004 production with B05Ya01 “Berezhok” combat module. Alabino, 2008.






The fifth BTR-90 at the show in Kubinka, 2002





The fifth model of the BTR-90 during factory tests



The fifth model of BTR-90 on the territory of military unit 75221 during field testing, 2001



The sixth model of the BTR-90 at the MVSV-2006 exhibition. Changes in frontal hull and crew hatches compared to 5th can be seen.



The sixth model of the BTR-90 at the Kubinka training ground.


The sixth prototype of the BTR-90 at the Kubinka training ground. New jet propulsion is clearly visible.



BTR-90 No. Sch07LT2303 build in July 1994. After testing at the Scientific Research Institute of AFV (Kubinka), it entered the museum and is now exhibited in the Patriot park.





Landing test in Baltiysk: exit from the project 1176 landing ship. Air supply pipes for driving while afloat are installed



Spaced armor. Bullet impact from test could be seen.





   Work to further increase the firepower of the BTR-90 led to the installation of a new combat compartment B05Y01 "Berezhok" (675-sb123). The main highlight of this fighting compartment was the use of the Kornet ATGM, four of which were mounted in armored packages on the sides of the turret. The main advantages of using the Kornet were the firing range increased to 5500 meters and the absence of the need to reload the launcher as all four missiles were ready to fire.


   In B05Ya01, an improved combined sight was used with an independent system for stabilizing the line of sight in two planes, a thermal imaging and laser rangefinder channels, as well as an ATGM guidance channel. The AG-17 grenade launcher was replaced with the AG-30M with an independent vertical aiming drive and an ammunition load of 300 grenades.



BTR-90 with the Berezhok combat module at the 2nd Guards motorized infantry division training ground, 2008




Panoramic sight of the commander with two-plane stabilization of the line of sight, television and rangefinder channels B8K2 on Berezhok turret.



Combined gunner's sight B09C02 with stabilized in two planes thermal imaging, laser rangefinder channels and ATGM guidance channel.



One of two Kornet ATGM launcher on the side of Berezhok turret.



Left launcher for Kornet ATGMs and AG-30M grenade launcher



Infantry compartment





   To increase mobility, it was proposed to try rearranging the transmission using the UTD-32T engine, which was boosted to 660 hp variant of the UTD-29 engine used on the BMP-3. To do this, designers had to completely redo the rear part of the hull, since the UTD-32T had a height of almost 30 cm more than 2V-06-2M. An experimental building was made for the installation of a new engine, but they did not manage to fully assemble the vehicle.


   The BTR-90 was supposed not just as an armored personnel carrier, but as a base vehicle for a whole family of military equipment. In particular, it was planned to place the fighting compartment of the Vena self-propelled artillery mount on the BTR-90 chassis. However, without additional measures to reduce chassis shacking during firing, this turned out to be impossible. Moreover, it was not possible to make a modification of the Sprut-SD, since the angle of safe firing without the danger of the vehicle tipping over turned out to be very small.


   On the topic "Tendon" in several equipment options a draft of medical combat vehicle was developed, but since the contractor delayed the production time, work was stopped. A design of the 5923Sh chassis was also developed with an increased volume and carrying capacity for the installation of various weapons and military equipment — mainly command-and-staff vehicles, communication centers, ARVs, etc. The carrying capacity of the chassis increased to 10.5 tons, and the gross weight increased to 24 tons. Since the topic of “Rostock” was subsequently closed, this chassis did not leave the state of the conceptual design.





   According to the results of many years of testing, including in the North Caucasus, GAZ-5923 was recommended for adoption and arming for serial production. By order of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation No. 324 of June 9, 2008, the BTR-90 was adopted by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. When adopted, the Rostok was assigned the designation K-1-7, but it did not take root - everyone continued to call it BTR-90.


   At the Arzamas Engineering Plant, preparations began for mass production. According to the plan, production vehicles were supposed to go to the troops since 2011, however, the Ministry of Defense, headed by A.E. Serdyukov, took a course on the rearmament of the army with the most new developments, which sometimes even did not even exist in the metal. The fate of many vehicles, almost ready for mass production and delivery into the troops, was crossed out - BTR-90 also fell into their number. The bold point on his fate was put by V.A. Popovkin, who said he had no idea how a soldier would run out of an armored personnel carrier through a side hatch, while vehicle is on the move.


   In 2010, it was officially announced that in connection with the revision of the concept of the construction and rearmament of the ground forces, the BTR-90 will not be included in the state order plan for 2011–2020. The rationale for this was the decision to develop an armored personnel carrier with a front-engine layout and the possibility of a rear landing on the topic of "Gil'za".


   The concept of an armored personnel carrier with a rear exit for motorized rifles significantly limits the tactics of its combat use. The back exit is justified only in the event of a head-on collision of two opposing force - then the armored personnel carrier is located frontally to the enemy, and the infantry can leave the APC under the protection of the hull. However, in modern military operations in the fight against illegal armed groups in a city or in a mountainous area, when AFV is attacked from an ambush, with a mine blast, etc. such an application is hardly optimal. In these cases, it will be most safe to exit the car in the direction opposite to the main fire exposure, and this is most often fire is coming from the side.


   The refusal from mass production for the RF Armed Forces immediately put a fat cross on the export prospects of Rostok, since the first question asked by a foreign customer is: is there such a machine in the Russian army? As a result, the contract for the supply of 600 (according to some sources, 700) armored personnel carriers for the UAE army was lost.


   In total, 12 units of the BTR-90 were built. One of them, with No. Sh07LT2303, is now exhibited in the Patriot Park. The remaining machines remaining after testing are in Nizhny Novgorod and Arzamas. One of the earliest vehicles, No. Sh07LT2302, became the research base for R&D "Krymsk" to create a combat wheeled vehicle with electric transmission.


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   Didn't knew that laser dazzler "Stilet" was adopted and produced (apparently)


1K11 "Stilet" was adopted by the Decree of the Central Committee of the CPSU and the Council of Ministers of the USSR No. 1205-370 of 12/19/1981

/.../ mass production started at the "Transport Engineering Plant named. Ya. M. Sverdlov" since 1982. System was intended to blind optical devices and dazzle guidance systems of enemy AFVs.



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26 minutes ago, Sovngard said:

Apparently, it was built on a SU-100P hull.



The carrier chassis was developed on the basis of the chassis of the 2S3M Akatsiya self-propelled howitzer.

    Chassis was made longer, 1 roller per side was added. Most of changes were in middle and rear sections of the hull.




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12 hours ago, Gun Ready said:

Where were these fotos taken. They are expecting mines?

   AFAIK MoD Central Military District 201st RAF military base in Tadjikistan. And here is even more museum-worthy T-72:



   Few more photos of different old models of T-72s








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3 minutes ago, alanch90 said:

So in the end both the "Epokha" and "Kinzhal" share exactly the same 57mm cartridge? I thought that the 57 for the Epokha was meant to be of lower power.

   Are there any picture of 57 mm production ammunition for Kinzhal gun? 

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      More expensive to work with than RHA per weight, middling impact properties, low thermal limits. Excellent stiffness.
       Fully weldable. Available in thicknesses up to 100mm.
      Mass efficiency vs RHA of 1 vs CE, 0.9 vs KE.
      Thickness efficiency vs RHA of 0.33 vs CE, 0.3 vs KE.
      Density- 2.7 g/cm^3 (approx. 1/3 of steel).
      For structural integrity, the following guidelines are recommended:
      For light vehicles (less than 40 tons), not less than 25mm RHA/45mm Aluminum base structure
      For heavy vehicles (70 tons and above), not less than 45mm RHA/80mm Aluminum base structure.
      Intermediate values for intermediate vehicles may be chosen as seen fit.
      Non-structural passive materials:
                                                                  iii.     HHA
      Steel, approximately 500 BHN through-hardened. Approximately twice as effective as RHA against KE and HEAT on a per-weight basis. Not weldable, middling shock properties. Available in thicknesses up to 25mm.
      Density- 7.8g/cm^3.
                                                                  iv.     Glass textolite
      Mass efficiency vs RHA of 2.2 vs CE, 1.64 vs KE.
      Thickness efficiency vs RHA of 0.52 vs CE, 0.39 vs KE.
      Density- 1.85 g/cm^3 (approximately ¼ of steel).
                                                                   v.     Fused silica
      Mass efficiency vs RHA of 3.5 vs CE, 1 vs KE.
      Thickness efficiency vs RHA of 1 vs CE, 0.28 vs KE.
      Density-2.2g/cm^3 (approximately 1/3.5 of steel).
      Non-structural, requires confinement (being in a metal box) to work.
                                                                  vi.     Fuel
      Mass efficiency vs RHA of 1.3 vs CE, 1 vs KE.
      Thickness efficiency vs RHA of 0.14 vs CE, 0.1 vs KE.
                                                                vii.     Assorted stowage/systems
      Mass efficiency vs RHA- 1 vs CE, 0.8 vs KE.
                                                               viii.     Spaced armor
      Requires a face of at least 25mm LOS vs CE, and at least 50mm LOS vs KE.
      Reduces penetration by a factor of 1.1 vs CE or 1.05 vs KE for every 10 cm air gap.
      Spaced armor rules only apply after any standoff surplus to the requirements of a reactive cassette.
      Reactive armor materials:
                                                                  ix.     ERA-light
      A sandwich of 3mm/3mm/3mm steel-explodium-steel.
      Requires mounting brackets of approximately 10-30% cassette weight.
      Must be spaced at least 3 sandwich thicknesses away from any other armor elements to allow full functionality. 81% coverage (edge effects).
                                                                   x.     ERA-heavy
      A sandwich of 15mm steel/3mm explodium/9mm steel.
      Requires mounting brackets of approximately 10-30% cassette weight.
      Must be spaced at least 3 sandwich thicknesses away from any other armor elements to allow full functionality. 81% coverage (edge effects).
                                                                  xi.     NERA-light
      A sandwich of 6mm steel/6mm rubber/ 6mm steel.
      Requires mounting brackets of approximately 10-30% cassette weight.
      Must be spaced at least 1 sandwich thickness away from any other armor elements to allow full functionality. 95% coverage.
                                                                 xii.     NERA-heavy
      A sandwich of 30mm steel/6m rubber/18mm steel.
      Requires mounting brackets of approximately 10-30% cassette weight.
      Must be spaced at least 1 sandwich thickness away from any other armor elements to allow full functionality. 95% coverage.
      The details of how to calculate armor effectiveness will be detailed in Appendix 1.
      b.      Firepower
                                                                    i.     2A46 equivalent tech- pressure limits, semi-combustible cases, recoil mechanisms and so on are at an equivalent level to that of the USSR in the year 1960.
                                                                   ii.     Limited APFSDS (L:D 15:1)- Spindle sabots or bourelleted sabots, see for example the Soviet BM-20 100mm APFSDS.
                                                                  iii.     Limited tungsten (no more than 100g per shot)
                                                                  iv.     Californian shaped charge technology- 5 CD penetration for high-pressure resistant HEAT, 6 CD for low pressure/ precision formed HEAT.
                                                                   v.     The general issue GPMG for the People’s Auditory Forces is the PKM. The standard HMG is the DShK.
      c.       Mobility
                                                                    i.     Engines tech level:
      1.      MB 838 (830 HP)
      2.      AVDS-1790-5A (908 HP)
      3.      Kharkov 5TD (600 HP)
                                                                   ii.     Power density should be based on the above engines. Dimensions are available online, pay attention to cooling of 1 and 3 (water cooled).
                                                                  iii.     Power output broadly scales with volume, as does weight. Trying to extract more power from the same size may come at the cost of reliability (and in the case of the 5TD, it isn’t all that reliable in the first place).
                                                                  iv.     There is nothing inherently wrong with opposed piston or 2-stroke engines if done right.
      d.      Electronics
                                                                    i.     LRFs- unavailable
                                                                   ii.     Thermals-unavailable
                                                                  iii.     I^2- limited
      3.      Operational Requirements.
      The requirements are detailed in the appended spreadsheet.
      4.      Submission protocols.
      Submission protocols and methods will be established in a follow-on post, nearer to the relevant time.
      Appendix 1- armor calculation
      Appendix 2- operational requirements
      Addendum 1 - more armor details
      Good luck, and may Hubbard guide your way to enlightenment!
    • By N-L-M
      detailed below is the expected format of the final submission.
      The date is set as Wednesday the 19th of June at 23:59 GMT.
      Again, incomplete designs may be submitted as they are and will be judged as seen fit.
      Vehicle Designation and name

      [insert 3-projection (front, top, side) and isometric render of vehicle here)

      Table of basic statistics:



      Mass, combat

      Length, combat (transport)

      Width, combat (transport)

      Height, combat (transport)

      Ground Pressure, MMP (nominal)

      Estimated Speed

      Estimated range

      Crew, number (roles)

      Main armament, caliber (ammo count ready/stowed)

      Secondary armament, caliber (ammo count ready/stowed)


      Vehicle designer’s notes: explain the thought process behind the design of the vehicle, ideas, and the development process from the designer’s point of view.

      Vehicle feature list:

      1.     Link to Appendix 1- RFP spreadsheet, colored to reflect achieved performance.

      2.     Engine- type, displacement, rated power, cooling, neat features.

      3.     Transmission- type, arrangement, neat features.

      4.     Fuel- Type, volume available, stowage location, estimated range, neat features.

      5.     Other neat features in the engine bay.

      6.     Suspension- Type, Travel, ground clearance, neat features.


      1.     Link to Appendix 1 - RFP spreadsheet, colored to reflect achieved performance.

      2.     Link to Appendix 2- armor array details.

      3.     Non-specified survivability features and other neat tricks- low profile, gun depression, instant smoke, cunning internal arrangement, and the like.


      A.    Weapons:

      1.     Link to Appendix 1- RFP spreadsheet, colored to reflect achieved performance.

      2.     Main Weapon-

      a.      Type

      b.      Caliber

      c.      ammunition types and performance (short)

      d.     Ammo stowage arrangement- numbers ready and total, features.

      e.      FCS- relevant systems, relevant sights for operating the weapon and so on.

      f.      Neat features.

      3.     Secondary weapon- Similar format to primary. Tertiary and further weapons- likewise.

      4.     Link to Appendix 3- Weapon system magic. This is where you explain how all the special tricks related to the armament that aren’t obviously available using Soviet 1961 tech work, and expand to your heart’s content on extimated performance and how these estimates were reached.

      B.    Optics:

      1.     Primary gunsight- type, associated trickery.

      2.     Likewise for any and all other optics systems installed, in no particular order.

      C.    FCS:

      1.     List of component systems, their purpose and the basic system architecture.

      2.     Link to Appendix 3- weapon system magic, if you have long explanations about the workings of the system.


      1.     List vehicle features which improve its fightability and useability.

      Additonal Features:

      Feel free to list more features as you see fit, in more categories.

      Free expression zone: Let out your inner Thetan to fully impress the world with the fruit of your labor. Kindly spoiler this section if it’s very long.

       Example for filling in Appendix 1
    • By Collimatrix
      Shortly after Jeeps_Guns_Tanks started his substantial foray into documenting the development and variants of the M4, I joked on teamspeak with Wargaming's The_Warhawk that the next thing he ought to do was a similar post on the T-72.
      Haha.  I joke.  I am funny man.
      The production history of the T-72 is enormously complicated.  Tens of thousands were produced; it is probably the fourth most produced tank ever after the T-54/55, T-34 and M4 sherman.
      For being such an ubiquitous vehicle, it's frustrating to find information in English-language sources on the T-72.  Part of this is residual bad information from the Cold War era when all NATO had to go on were blurry photos from May Day parades:

      As with Soviet aircraft, NATO could only assign designations to obviously externally different versions of the vehicle.  However, they were not necessarily aware of internal changes, nor were they aware which changes were post-production modifications and which ones were new factory variants of the vehicle.  The NATO designations do not, therefore, necessarily line up with the Soviet designations.  Between different models of T-72 there are large differences in armor protection and fire control systems.  This is why anyone arguing T-72 vs. X has completely missed the point; you need to specify which variant of T-72.  There are large differences between them!
      Another issue, and one which remains contentious to this day, is the relation between the T-64, T-72 and T-80 in the Soviet Army lineup.  This article helps explain the political wrangling which led to the logistically bizarre situation of three very similar tanks being in frontline service simultaneously, but the article is extremely biased as it comes from a high-ranking member of the Ural plant that designed and built the T-72.  Soviet tank experts still disagree on this; read this if you have some popcorn handy.  Talking points from the Kharkov side seem to be that T-64 was a more refined, advanced design and that T-72 was cheap filler, while Ural fans tend to hold that T-64 was an unreliable mechanical prima donna and T-72 a mechanically sound, mass-producible design.
      So, if anyone would like to help make sense of this vehicle, feel free to post away.  I am particularly interested in:
      -What armor arrays the different T-72 variants use.  Diagrams, dates of introduction, and whether the array is factory-produced or a field upgrade of existing armor are pertinent questions.
      -Details of the fire control system.  One of the Kharkov talking points is that for most of the time in service, T-64 had a more advanced fire control system than contemporary T-72 variants.  Is this true?  What were the various fire control systems in the T-64 and T-72, and what were there dates of introduction?  I am particularly curious when Soviet tanks got gun-follows-sight FCS.
      -Export variants and variants produced outside the Soviet Union.  How do they stack up?  Exactly what variant(s) of T-72 were the Iraqis using in 1991?

      -WTF is up with the T-72's transmission?  How does it steer and why is its reverse speed so pathetically low?
    • By LoooSeR
      Hello, my friends and Kharkovites, take a sit and be ready for your brains to start to work - we are going to tell you a terrible secret of how to tell apart Soviet tanks that actually works like GLORIOUS T-80 and The Mighty T-72 from Kharkovites attempt to make a tank - the T-64. Many of capitalists Westerners have hard time understanding what tank is in front of them, even when they know smart words like "Kontakt-5" ERA. Ignoramus westerners!
         Because you are all were raised in several hundreds years old capitalism system all of you are blind consumer dummies, that need big noisy labels and shiny colorful things to be attached to product X to be sold to your ignorant heads and wallets, thats why we will need to start with basics. BASICS, DA? First - how to identify to which tank "family" particular MBT belongs to - to T-64 tree, or T-72 line, or Superior T-80 development project, vehicles that don't have big APPLE logo on them for you to understand what is in front of you. And how you can do it in your home without access to your local commie tank nerd? 
         Easy! Use this Putin approved guide "How to tell appart different families of Soviet and Russian tanks from each other using simple and easy to spot external features in 4 steps: a guide for ignorant western journalists and chairborn generals to not suck in their in-depth discussions on the Internet".
      Chapter 1: Where to look, what to see.
      T-64 - The Ugly Kharkovite tank that doesn't work 
         We will begin with T-64, a Kharkovite attempt to make a tank, which was so successful that Ural started to work on their replacement for T-64 known as T-72. Forget about different models of T-64, let's see what is similar between all of them.

      T-72 - the Mighty weapon of Workers and Peasants to smash westerners
         Unlike tank look-alike, made by Kharkovites mad mans, T-72 is true combat tank to fight with forces of evil like radical moderate barbarians and westerners. Thats why we need to learn how identify it from T-64 and you should remember it's frightening lines!

      The GLORIOUS T-80 - a Weapon to Destroy and Conquer bourgeois countries and shatter westerners army
         And now we are looking at the Pride of Party and Soviet army, a true tank to spearhead attacks on decadent westerners, a tank that will destroy countries by sucking their military budgets and dispersing their armies in vortex of air, left from high-speed charge by the GLORIOUS T-80!

      The T-80 shooting down jets by hitting them behind the horizont 
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