Russian Army/Ground Forces Discussion and Updates

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
Do Russian armored brigadeshave anti tank battalions?
I don't see much sense in attaching anti tank units to inherently armored units, rather to light troops. The BMPT is supposed to escort tanks in urban areas, and not much else.
I honestly don't know, but I suspect not. I also don't think the BMPT is suited to that particular task. I think that it works best as a fire-support vehicle for combined arms formations. I think the best escort for tanks in an urban area is plenty of well trained infantry.

What's odd is that in Israel, perhaps by misunderstanding of statements or not, there is some notion in a local forum and even some media, that there are plans for a Carmel-derived medium vehicle with a medium cannon as a replacement for some tanks and no troop transport capability. I really hope that's not true. The BMPT IMO should not become operational in any form, at least a manned one.
Yeah, it basically has no place within current force organizations. This is why, like I said, the only place I can see it working is as a replacement for SP ATGM carriers because the current BMPT already carries 4, and can easily carry more. Within that context adding two auto-cannons and an MBT chassis are just an improvement. This is all assuming there's spare cash for it.
 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
Update.

It appears that a decision has been made to purchase cage armor for Russian BMPs and BTRs. Some of the first BTR-82AT with mounts for cage armor were already shown at this year's victory parade, but this does raise the possibility that the continuing BMP-2 upgrade will look more like what's in the second link.


A new UR-15 mineclearer was shown at Kavkaz-2020. It's the third BMP-3 based version of a rocket-mine clearer. And the vehicle appears to be carrying Afghanit APS. The radars for it are not in sight, so this may be a mockup.


New upgraded guided missiles for the Tornado-S have been shown.


A bunch of photos from Army-2020.


New airmobile light cars for the VDV shown at the recent Kavkaz-2020


At the same Kavkaz they shown off the Afghanista-era tactic of moving D-30s using helos.


Also a new BMP-3 based command vehicle for ATGM units was spotted, the Zavet. I can't help but wonder how long before we see a new artillery command post on the BMP-3 chassis as well. It seems like the BMP-3 is destined to replace many (if not all) the roles currently done by the MT-LB.


A collection of photos from recent training exercises in the 4th motor-rifles. It's interesting to see they're all wearing the Sozevezdie transmitters on their shoulders (the small round plastic bump).

 

Big_Zucchini

Active Member
The BMPT already exists for many years, but it seems that the Russian starts to become more interested in this system.
Unusually for DefenseNews, the article is written very un-professionally.
There are at least 3 conceptually and structurally distinct versions of the "Terminator". The article barely makes an effort to identify it, by listing its weapons.

The author also makes no effort whatsoever to explain how a single vehicle, revealed to be by far the least capable of the 3 versions, is more capable than 40 riflemen and 6 AFVs.

Just so we're clear, even if we disregard 40 infantrymen entirely, those 6 AFVs are of the BMP type. Let's take the worst case scenario (for the BMPT) and say it's a BMP-3 of which Russia has a critical mass.
This makes it 6 x 30mm guns, and 6 x 100mm guns. ATGMs possible to launch from gun.
Assuming each can engage 1 target at a time, with a greater selection of firepower, and a BMPT can only engage 2 targets at a time (I'll explain why not 3 in a moment), that makes the motor rifle platoon at least 3 times as effective without even accounting for maneuver, distribution of types of targets, and combat flexibility.

Of course, a BMPT of that configuration can only theoretically engage 3 targets at the same time. In practice, it cannot.
The first weapon system is the dual 30mm guns, which exist to avoid a more complicated dual feed system and other issues like barrel wear which in turn leads to inaccuracy, and Soviet 30mm guns specifically are notoriously inaccurate.

The 2nd weapon system is the ATGMs which can be guided by the commander's panoramic sight.

The 3rd weapon system is actually 2 AGLs mounted nearly coaxially to the hull. Much like a WW2 era tank destroyer, you need to rotate and incline the hull to aim the guns. To avoid a complex and expensive system like hydropneumatic suspension, the guns are given a few degrees to maneuver in both axes.

It takes not 1 but 2 crewmen to operate the AGLs, because a coincidence rangefinder is also apparently expensive (technically shouldn't be, but it requires a custom designed system), and an alternative system based on more advanced and accurate servos (servos activate based on laser range finder data to align at given range) is also, apparently, more expensive than 2 humans.

Because these AGLs are almost totally useless, and require the vehicle to stop and rotate to the target to use them, it is widely assumed the 2 men are there to add to the situational awareness. IMO giving them 2 external MG mounts instead of the AGL would've been better.

This makes the total crew of this machine a whopping 5 men, in a vehicle that is already thought to be extraordinarily cramped.

The configuration that I thought was preferred by the Russian army, is the T-15 as is. An HIFV checks all the boxes of a BMPT. That's why they called an upgunned version of it (57mm) a "Terminator 3", even though that's not an official name.
 
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Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
Unusually for DefenseNews, the article is written very un-professionally.
There are at least 3 conceptually and structurally distinct versions of the "Terminator". The article barely makes an effort to identify it, by listing its weapons.

The author also makes no effort whatsoever to explain how a single vehicle, revealed to be by far the least capable of the 3 versions, is more capable than 40 riflemen and 6 AFVs.

Just so we're clear, even if we disregard 40 infantrymen entirely, those 6 AFVs are of the BMP type. Let's take the worst case scenario (for the BMPT) and say it's a BMP-3 of which Russia has a critical mass.
This makes it 6 x 30mm guns, and 6 x 100mm guns. ATGMs possible to launch from gun.
Assuming each can engage 1 target at a time, with a greater selection of firepower, and a BMPT can only engage 2 targets at a time (I'll explain why not 3 in a moment), that makes the motor rifle platoon at least 3 times as effective without even accounting for maneuver, distribution of types of targets, and combat flexibility.

Of course, a BMPT of that configuration can only theoretically engage 3 targets at the same time. In practice, it cannot.
The first weapon system is the dual 30mm guns, which exist to avoid a more complicated dual feed system and other issues like barrel wear which in turn leads to inaccuracy, and Soviet 30mm guns specifically are notoriously inaccurate.

The 2nd weapon system is the ATGMs which can be guided by the commander's panoramic sight.

The 3rd weapon system is actually 2 AGLs mounted nearly coaxially to the hull. Much like a WW2 era tank destroyer, you need to rotate and incline the hull to aim the guns. To avoid a complex and expensive system like hydropneumatic suspension, the guns are given a few degrees to maneuver in both axes.

It takes not 1 but 2 crewmen to operate the AGLs, because a coincidence rangefinder is also apparently expensive (technically shouldn't be, but it requires a custom designed system), and an alternative system based on more advanced and accurate servos (servos activate based on laser range finder data to align at given range) is also, apparently, more expensive than 2 humans.

Because these AGLs are almost totally useless, and require the vehicle to stop and rotate to the target to use them, it is widely assumed the 2 men are there to add to the situational awareness. IMO giving them 2 external MG mounts instead of the AGL would've been better.

This makes the total crew of this machine a whopping 5 men, in a vehicle that is already thought to be extraordinarily cramped.

The configuration that I thought was preferred by the Russian army, is the T-15 as is. An HIFV checks all the boxes of a BMPT. That's why they called an upgunned version of it (57mm) a "Terminator 3", even though that's not an official name.
It's worse than you say. The ATGM and the guns are mounted rigidly on the same turret. Realistically if it has an infantry threat on one side and an armored threat on another, it can only engage them one at a time. It can engage multiple targets, but only provided that all of those targets are in a fairly narrow sector of fire straight ahead. In other words it fails at precisely what it was supposed to be - a way to engage large numbers of infantry threats in complex urban and mountainous environments. The AGLs are a particularly poor choice. I still don't understand why they don't just put a single (or dual if they have such a need for more) AGS-17 on the turret.

Hypothetically the vehicle can engage as many as 4 targets, as long as they are all in that narrow cone, but it certainly doesn't explain what advantage that offers over the regular MBT-IFV-infantry dismounts combo. An infantry squad, not platoon or two, squad, can engage 7 targets each by the dismounts, and at least one target by the IFV.

While the "wall of fire" that this thing can lay down certainly looks impressive on a proving ground, it doesn't actually help much. Like I said above, the only place it can go in the ORBAT is as an SP ATGM carrier, but that would require more ATGMs mounted on it (ideally those new long range Kornet variants not the Ataka that Burevestnik keeps trying to force in the Land Forces).

What's extra stupid is how easy it would be to make this very same vehicle, but better. Take a regular T-90M MBT, replace the main gun with dual 2A42s that can fire simultaneously, stick 4 Kornets in a mast like the Kornet-D1 variant, and stick an HMG/AGL combo in a RCWS on top. All of these things already exist, and a full-sized MBT should provide enough space, and much better protection. It would still have no place in the ORBAT but at least the weapons and protection levels would make sense. Of course this would also reveal the BMPT for what it really is - an MBT replacement rather than a complementary vehicle.
 

Big_Zucchini

Active Member
A "terminator 2" variant exists, the same T-72 based BMPT, IIRC, but with a different superstructure that eliminates the two manned AGL stations.
But that is something you know very well.

What we do not know and may never know is why not go with any of the following alternatives that appear much better:
1)Invest the money in the Armata family to accelerate T-15 induction which in turn fulfills all the BMPT's requirements and more.
2)Build a T-90 based IFV similar to BTR-T or Achzarit.
3)Improve the turret design of the BMP-3M and produce more units.

It's stuff like this that convinces me the Russian ground forces are riddled with corruption issues that date back to the Soviet era.
 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
A "terminator 2" variant exists, the same T-72 based BMPT, IIRC, but with a different superstructure that eliminates the two manned AGL stations.
But that is something you know very well.
The original variant used the T-90 chassis, the T-2 was meant to be converted T-72s for customers with many old T-72 hulls around. It's interesting that in a vehicle that's supposed to destroy anti-tank infantry they ditched the AGL and kept the ATGM. ;)

What we do not know and may never know is why not go with any of the following alternatives that appear much better:
1)Invest the money in the Armata family to accelerate T-15 induction which in turn fulfills all the BMPT's requirements and more.
This is still a total mystery. What is going on with OKR Armata? They've got a serial tech-passport for the T-14 at least, and they've been in state trials for a while now. I would expect to see at least some vehicles at a line unit undergoing experimental exploitation. I saw footage of the Kurganets IFV (iirc 2 of them) in some motor-rifle unit or other, alongside a bucket of BMP-3s. But for the Armata family, just publicity photos from industry proving grounds.

2)Build a T-90 based IFV similar to BTR-T or Achzarit.
There was an actual project to do this some time ago, but it was cancelled in anticipation of - you guessed it - the T-15. Interestingly enough the BMO-T already exists, and is in service, though on a T-72 chassis. No reason it couldn't be produced on a T-90M chassis, and no reason it couldn't carry a modern combat module like the Bumerang-BM or the Epoha.

3)Improve the turret design of the BMP-3M and produce more units.
This is an interesting one. What exactly is a BMP-3M to you? Currently the BMP-3 Dragoon was presented under the name BMP-3M. There's the new Manul variant with rear exit, front engine, and the Bumerang-BM module as well as the Kurganets side-skirts, then there's the traditional BMP-3 but with improvements to the FCS, additional armor, in some variants with light ERA, and in some variants with a modified Arena system. And then there's the currently produced BMP-3s that have upgraded FCS and thermals, but the extent of the upgrades is unclear.

In my opinion it's time to re-asses a few things for the Land Forces, including the existence of dedicated ATGM btlns which are in my opinion a luxury. If the MRBde or Rgt really need the extra anti-tank punch that badly, then a BMPT-type vehicle (just not the current monstrosity) might be warranted, but served in artillery btlns of 18, breaking off into batteries of 6 to support MRBtlns instead of (or in addition to) MBTs. Arty Bde and Rgt ATGM btlns should be retained with a heavy ATGM, but the Khrizantema is too badly outdated at this point. It would need to be something like a ground-based Izdelie 305 variant, or possibly an up-sized version of whatever comes out of OKR Sokol for future GLATGMs. Hell even the Hermes would work, maybe on a tracked chassis. And of course the BMP-3s need to be equipped with Kornet ATGMs in turret mounts either single missiles on top, or pair on the sides.

It's stuff like this that convinces me the Russian ground forces are riddled with corruption issues that date back to the Soviet era.
We have a few possible answers here. One of them is that induction into the Russian armed forces is the price of securing the Algerian deal. Russian sources repeatedly state (and not pertaining to the BMPT specifically but in general) that systems not accepted for domestic service are much harder to export. Another possibility is that this is all conceptual testing about whether a BMPT-type vehicle even matters. You'll note that after one contract for 12 vehicles in 2017, there have been no more. Also only 8 were recently handed over to the troops, while iirc 10 were talked about earlier. A third possibility is that the lobbying power of UVZ has finally gotten through the bureaucratic and administrative decision making barriers and pushed through some sort of procurement plan, though one that has yet to be made public. I wouldn't be surprised if a little bit of all 3 are involved.
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
I like the idea of the Terminator 3, but the execution leaves a helluva lot to be desired. A twin 30 mm cannon or a 30 mm revolver cannon along with ATGM in an unmanned revolving turret, and a RWS with a 12.7mm or 14.5 mm HB HMG in it would work. Mount it on either a tracked vehicle, or an 8 x 8, or both. If it was on a tracked vehicle you could mount MANPAD pods as well. The crew would have to be a minimum of three; driver, gunner, and commander who also doubles as reloader when required. Or if the officers think that hard work is beneath them, a fourth crew member.
 

Big_Zucchini

Active Member
The original variant used the T-90 chassis, the T-2 was meant to be converted T-72s for customers with many old T-72 hulls around. It's interesting that in a vehicle that's supposed to destroy anti-tank infantry they ditched the AGL and kept the ATGM. ;)
You're right, thanks for the correction. However now it seems they're mostly toying with T-72 based variants.
Isn't there a 3-man version on a T-72 hull?
But an ATGM somewhat makes more sense than an AGL. An AGL cannot reach an ATGM crew sitting 5km away. An ATGM might, but it loses a lot of its effectiveness if it isn't an F&F because it basically means both will score a hit, and of course leaves the enemy ATGM crew at an advantage because Russia's peer enemies have F&F and NLOS ATGMs.
Weird that when Russia finally announced work on a similar missile, it intended it for division level units.



This is an interesting one. What exactly is a BMP-3M to you? Currently the BMP-3 Dragoon was presented under the name BMP-3M. There's the new Manul variant with rear exit, front engine, and the Bumerang-BM module as well as the Kurganets side-skirts, then there's the traditional BMP-3 but with improvements to the FCS, additional armor, in some variants with light ERA, and in some variants with a modified Arena system. And then there's the currently produced BMP-3s that have upgraded FCS and thermals, but the extent of the upgrades is unclear.
You're right again. I actually just meant the BMP-3 in its current form, and typed "3M" because I was simultaneously thinking about its airborne counterpart the BMD-4M.

But I didn't know the 3M classification belonged to multiple distinct variants, so thanks.

A third possibility is that the lobbying power of UVZ has finally gotten through the bureaucratic and administrative decision making barriers and pushed through some sort of procurement plan, though one that has yet to be made public. I wouldn't be surprised if a little bit of all 3 are involved.
I think that's most likely. A batch of 12 vehicles only is not enough for a production line. That's prototype numbers, and prototypes are specially assembled, making them a solid bunch more expensive.
I think that's just UVZ trying to funnel more money into their pockets and that's it.

I like the idea of the Terminator 3, but the execution leaves a helluva lot to be desired.
The "Terminator 3" if built, is just an HIFV. The only reason the BMPT exists is because Russia wanted some vehicle that was armored enough to fight in a city, but had less destructive and more surgical firepower than a tank.
Its IFVs fulfilled that role, but always left a lot to be desired in terms of protection. Hence the BMPT.
But the T-15 combines all the good that's in an IFV and the BMPT.
As is, the BMPT is a horrible solution that only exists because there was nothing better at the time it was conceived. But a lot happened since then, and it's no longer a viable solution.

I disagree about the execution on the T-15. I think the Epoch turret on it is solid, and the 57mm gun is good as well.

A twin 30 mm cannon or a 30 mm revolver cannon along with ATGM in an unmanned revolving turret, and a RWS with a 12.7mm or 14.5 mm HB HMG in it would work.
The dual 30mm guns are a poor man's solution, and offer no advantage over western dual feed designs.
If, say, a BMPT only meets 1 type of target, then only 1 cannon will actually fire.
The cannons aren't properly fastened, and due to the muzzle brake design that throws the gases sideways, the cannons cause mutual, non contra-harmonic tumbling that makes the guns terribly inaccurate after the 1st shot.
The much more modern Epoch turret still uses these outdated guns, but solves most of the inherent accuracy issues of the BMPT by just having 1 gun.

If it was on a tracked vehicle you could mount MANPAD pods as well.
Vehicles with either a high caliber gun or medium caliber gun don't need MANPADs unless they're dedicated AA vehicles.
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
Vehicles with either a high caliber gun or medium caliber gun don't need MANPADs unless they're dedicated AA vehicles.
You know I am a great believer in ground forces having strong AA and AAA. Besides your normal organic air defence I believe that any mobile unit should be able to provide its own VSHORAD out to around a 6 - 8 km range. It doesn't take much to add MANPAD capability to a vehicle and in the modern battlefield there are a lot of flying nasties that want to ruin your day. You can get sights for the vehicle that enabling targeting of both ground and airborne targets. The vehicles don't need radars and they can generally use the sensors and target designators that they already have.

Again it's a lesson that history has taught us. If you look at the second world war, air power, especially tactical air power, had a significant impact upon the ground war. The allied air forces decimation of the German forces caught in the Falaise gap springs to mind. The damage done was horrendous and the Germans did have some AAA, but nowhere enough, and they had lost command of the air. Or in May and June of 1940 during the 1st Battle of France, when the Luftwaffe had command of the air and blasted the way through for the ground forces. There was nothing the allies could do in response.

Lessons like that are forgotten and all the experts say that in modern warfare we don't need this anymore because we have all this technology. But we always end making the same mistakes and having to relearn the same lessons paying the price in blood yet again. The last time that the US, UK, France, Canada, Australia and NZ fought a peer enemy was in WW2, and we all paid a big price in blood relearning harsh lessons, that we shouldn't have forgotten.
 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
You're right, thanks for the correction. However now it seems they're mostly toying with T-72 based variants.
Isn't there a 3-man version on a T-72 hull?
Sorry, it wasn't a correction. The T-2 is the 3-man version on the T-72 hull.

But an ATGM somewhat makes more sense than an AGL. An AGL cannot reach an ATGM crew sitting 5km away. An ATGM might, but it loses a lot of its effectiveness if it isn't an F&F because it basically means both will score a hit, and of course leaves the enemy ATGM crew at an advantage because Russia's peer enemies have F&F and NLOS ATGMs.
Weird that when Russia finally announced work on a similar missile, it intended it for division level units.
Not when you consider the vehicle's stated purpose. Remember, this whole thing was born out of the Afghan war where they used repurposed Shilkas to escort convoys through the mountains because it had the angle of elevation to fire up steep hill sides, and the high volume of firepower was extremely effective against enemy infantry. If you look at the combat module for the BTR-82 you'll notice it can elevate at angles comparable to AAA. This is why. The BMPT was supposed to fight off infantry ambushes in complex environments, not fire at far away targets on a relatively open plain. A regular GLATGM should be able to do that.

I'm not sure if you've looked at the ChTZ designs for the BMPT done initially but they initially had a variant that was a T-72B but with the gun removed, twin 30mm guns added by the sides of the turret, and unguided rockets added to each side as well. The idea being that a rocket volley would help gain fire superiority on enemy infantry, and force them into cover, and the twin guns would deliver a high volume of suppressive fire. They also experimented with a version that just had the BMP-3 turret on a modified T-72 chassis, and two separate RCWS with a 30mm gun each, which in the final iteration added ATGMs. The original BMPT combat module from UVZ carried a single 30mm gun, an AGL, and a quad-pack of ATGMs in an armored canister making it better then the first Object 199 presentation which had the ATGM tubes completely unprotected.


I think that's most likely. A batch of 12 vehicles only is not enough for a production line. That's prototype numbers, and prototypes are specially assembled, making them a solid bunch more expensive.
I think that's just UVZ trying to funnel more money into their pockets and that's it.
I'm not convinced, to be honest. It might be part of the equation but I suspect trying to sell them to Algeria (successfully) had something to do with it.

The "Terminator 3" if built, is just an HIFV. The only reason the BMPT exists is because Russia wanted some vehicle that was armored enough to fight in a city, but had less destructive and more surgical firepower than a tank.
It had to do with the angle of elevation and volume of fire that could be delivered by a single vehicle. Soviet commanders were very impressed with the ability of the ZSU-23-4 to sweep enemy infantry positions. They wanted something similar but on an MBT-protected chassis/turret.

I disagree about the execution on the T-15. I think the Epoch turret on it is solid, and the 57mm gun is good as well.
I want to clear something up. There are 3 combat modules for the next gen platforms.

1) Bumerang-BM is the one with the 30mm, 4x Kornet ATGM.
2) Epoha is the one with the 57mm LShO gun, 4x Kornet, and the new Bulat small GM
3) Baykal is the one with the high-velocity 57mm S-60 derivative shown only on the T-15, with a pair of Ataka ATGMs (Burevestnik lobbying)

The dual 30mm guns are a poor man's solution, and offer no advantage over western dual feed designs.
In this case. Initially they were supposed to fire together. I.e. deliver twice the volume of fire. But with the fall of the Soviet Union and loss of funding the CONOPS got muddled.

If, say, a BMPT only meets 1 type of target, then only 1 cannon will actually fire.
Some sources indicate this is a legacy of the combat module's development history. Initially it carried an AGL where the second gun is, and it wasn't set up to fire the AGL and autocannon at the same time (for obvious reasons).

Vehicles with either a high caliber gun or medium caliber gun don't need MANPADs unless they're dedicated AA vehicles.
Provided their FCS is capable of handling threats like rapidly moving helos and small UAVs.
 

Big_Zucchini

Active Member
You know I am a great believer in ground forces having strong AA and AAA. Besides your normal organic air defence I believe that any mobile unit should be able to provide its own VSHORAD out to around a 6 - 8 km range. It doesn't take much to add MANPAD capability to a vehicle and in the modern battlefield there are a lot of flying nasties that want to ruin your day. You can get sights for the vehicle that enabling targeting of both ground and airborne targets. The vehicles don't need radars and they can generally use the sensors and target designators that they already have.
I am also a great believer in distributed air defense. And you're spot on about the utilization of existing components part.
But I think you should look at bit beyond the traditional. MANPADs? C'mon man. They're big, bulky, and a logistical and training burden.

Let's disseminate this. What threats are we facing today?
1)Big - ATGMs possess a sufficient energetic envelope to reach out to 6, even 10km out, and hit a maneuvering helicopter. Through optimized computation and high quality sensors, a medium caliber gun, particularly the new 40mm, 50mm, and 57mm adopted globally, can hit MALE drones at close range.

2)Small - Any gun beyond and including 30mm, via programmable ammo, can hit small drones.
HMGs and MMGs should be fused into the total weapons suite to provide a quick short ranged defense vs drones and munitions as well.

In this case. Initially they were supposed to fire together. I.e. deliver twice the volume of fire. But with the fall of the Soviet Union and loss of funding the CONOPS got muddled.
That's even worse. As I said, the tumbling of the autocannons would not allow accurate usage of both in a high rate of fire.
 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
That's even worse. As I said, the tumbling of the autocannons would not allow accurate usage of both in a high rate of fire.
This actually raises some interesting questions. The Shilka is generally considered a good ADS for it's time, as is the Tunguska. Both use multiple auto-cannons. Now neither use the 2A42, one uses a 23mm, the other uses the 2A38 autocannon. Are those more accurate? If yes, why not just use them on the BMPT?
 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
Update.

New 30mm ammo is being developed. Allegedly a 30mm APSFDS round is already available, and a HEFRAG programmable round is in the works. It's unclear from the article whether the MoD is purchasing either one. Overall munitions is a weak area for the Russian military, and considerable gains could be made with relatively modest efforts in that area.


A BMP-3 carrying the Epoha module has been spotted at Kubinka testing grounds.


Russian MPs have received the first batch of Patrul' MRAPs. It's a less protected and cheaper option compared to the Tayfun MRAPs.


An interesting photo of T-15s still with the Bumerang-BM modules, the date is unclear.


A hypersonic version of the Hermes GM is being developed with a different type of missile engine. A reminder, Russia recently showed off the testbed truck for the Hermes NLOS munition.


T-72B3 deliveries continue (B3M of course). Some of them are headed to Kaliningrad region where several existing units are being merged into a Motor-Rifle Division.


A look at new and upgraded armored vehicles deliveries this year.

Somewhere between 20 and 30 T-90M tanks were handed over to both the Tamanskaya 2nd Motor-Rifles, and the Kazan tank school. 10 T-90M tanks had been handed over earlier. 10 T-80BVMs went to the Kantemirovskaya 4th Tanks. 120 T-72B3Ms re-arming the 79th MR BDe, 228th MRRgt, and two tanks btlns of the 239th Tank Rgt both from the 90th Tank Div. Batches also went to the Kazan tank school and Novosibirsk officers academy. Overall ~180 new and upgraded tanks. Another 120 T-72Bs and an unknown number of T-72As were taken out of storage. T-72As have long been used in training centers especially for driver training.

~100 BMP-3s were handed over re-arming all 3 btlns of the 103rd MRRgt of the 150th MRDiv. A batch also went to the 467th Training Center. 60 upgraded BMP-2s have been delivered, at least 20 of them carry the Berezhok, the rest are hard to confirm. One batch went to the new tank regiment of the 127th MRDiv. 10 went to the 21st MRBde, 20 to the Far Eastern Military Academy, 8 to the 201st Military Base. A batch of 20-30 BMP-1AMs went to presumably the 35th Motor-Rifles. They were seen in a train headed towards it. It's also one of the last units reported to still have BMP-1s in service. A total of 3 btln sets of BMD-4Ms and BTR-MDMs went to the VDV this year, 2 to the 7th VDV, one to the 76th.

At least 120 BTR-82As were delivered, 3 btlns to the 205th MRBde re-arming all of it's btlns, and one to 127th Motor-Rifle Div.

8 2S35 howitzers went to the 400th Arty Rgt of the 90th Tank Div. Also it appears that 36 2S19M2s were handed over, 12 going to the 227th Arty Bde (2 batteries for some reason), 10 to the 856th Arty Rgt of the 144th Motor-Rifles, and 10 to the 381st Arty Rgt of the 150th Motor-Rifles. These numbers raise some questions, as 10 howitzers makes little sense. It's likely that the initial press release said something like "over 10" meaning 12 (2 batteries of 6) and it got shortened to 10 somewhere along the line. Reduced-strength batteries would have 4 guns not 6. I'm also unsure why they're delivering what clearly appear to be 2 arty Btlns of 18 guns each (3 6-gun batteries) in batches of 12s. I have a sneaking feeling that something strange is going on with Russian artillery formations. It also appears that they're done upgrading vintage 2S19s into M1s possibly due to having exhausted all available vehicles but more likely due to shifting priorities. They also appear to have halted upgrades of the 2S3, and are continuing the withdrawal of the 2S1 from service.

 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
BTR-82A deliveries are also continuing. At this rate it seems possible that the BTR-80 will be eclipsed by the BTR-82 not the Bumerang.


Another set of BMD-4M and BTR-MDM have been handed over to the 7th VDV. This is the 9th btln handed over, additionally some vehicles have gone to training facilities.


Russian military intelligence states that they've cut the time from target spotted to target struck by 2.5 times due to improved means of locating and identifying targets, and relaying the information.


There seems to be a good chance that Russia is testing loitering munitions against targets in Syria. There have been reports of such munitions being tested, and reports from Syria of targets allegedly struck by them. Kalashnikov concern purchased ZALA Aerospace, and they have presented the KYB, and it's further developed, the Lancet, at recent Army forums.


A look at the artillery and rocket systems currently being acquired by the Land Forces. It's interesting to note that despite initial speculation about the Tornado-S being a new TEL, if this footage is to be believed, it's the same old TEL with new electronics. I've suspected this for a while, since information about deliveries of the type kept cropping up but no footage of a discernible "new" 300mm MLRS was forthcoming. Another interesting note is that footage of the Uragan-1M keeps showing up as well, though I have no concrete information on deliveries of the type, and there's never more then one in the footage. Note, an Uragan variant was cited using the old missile tubes but on a BAZ truck, possibly due to the age of the original vehicles.

On top of this there was a recent announcement that Tornado-S systems will replace all Smerch and Uragan systems by 2027 (the same source claims the Tornado-G will replace the Grad in the same timeframe, something I really don't believe, the numbers don't add up).


Plans of re-armament of South MD with 2S19M2 howitzers have been announced. Over the past years 2 btlns per year (36 howitzers) have been purchased each year. It appears that West-MD has received quite a few of the type. It's possible that in addition to newly builds, once the 2S35s start to arrive in West MD, some of their M2s will go to South MD.


An upgrade is planned for existing TOS-1 and 1A variants. The upgrades will take place during planned overhauls. New munitions are planned with an extended range of 15 kms, and have already allegedly been tested during Kavakz-2020. Additionally they're getting new comms, and automatic fire control systems likely in line with regular artillery units.


New artillery command systems have been handed over to the ground forces, the 1V181 and 1V198.


Production of the Bulat guided missile is set to start in 2022. This is probably tied to production of the Kurganets around the same time since the only launcher for it is in the Epokha turret. Though I suppose it could go into BMP-3s with the same turret.


Trials of new sniper rifles produced under OKR Ugolek are set to start in 2021.


A Tayfun-K MRAP 4X4 was seen in the NKR.


Plans to completely re-arm the VDV with Kornet ATGMs have been announced. This makes sense, the missile is available and has done well in recent conflicts.


The decision has been made to purchase the Sprut-SDM1. It's not clear what the timeframes aren't, but they shouldn't be long since it's only an upgrade of the Sprut-SD.


Development continues on the Ptsitselov SHORAD for the VDV, it appears to be a modified Sosna SAM on a BMD-4M chasis.


Deliveries of the Armata family of vehicles have been pushed back to 2021.

 
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