On September 27, the TASS news agency published new statements by Dmitry Semizorov, General Director of the Central Scientific Research Institute of Precision Engineering (TSNI Tochmash). The head of the company spoke about the current work under the Lotos program. In addition, he announced industry plans for the near future, as well as for the next few years. According to him, work on a promising self-propelled artillery gun (CAO) will continue until the very beginning of the next decade.
According to D. Semizorov, at the time of the interview, the experts of the Central Research Institute Tochmash were completing the first phase of the development of the Lotos project. The purpose of this stage of work was to prepare a package of design documentation. It was planned to complete the first stage already at the end of September - no later than a few days after the announcement of this information.
Using ready-made design documentation, the industry will have to build a prototype of a promising self-propelled gun, designed to carry out a variety of tests. In 2019, this car is planned to be submitted for state tests, the results of which will determine its further fate. The authors of the project expect that all the required checks will be completed in the same year, and this will allow to start new works. D. Semizorov noted that the experienced "Lotos" will go to the tests together with the promising machine control "Zavet-D".
With the successful completion of tests in the same 2019, CJSC “Lotos” will be put into service. The launch of mass production of equipment for subsequent deliveries to the airborne troops is scheduled for 2020 year. Also, the Airborne Forces will have to receive new artillery control vehicles.
Earlier it was reported that prior to the Lotos project, domestic designers were developing an airborne installation for Zauralets-D. Several years ago, such an instrument was abandoned in favor of a new project. Talking about the current work on the "Lotus", the head of the Central Research Institute Tochmash noted that the new self-propelled gun has a lot of differences from the previous one. A new chassis, another tower, a modified fire control system, etc. are proposed. The most important feature of the project "Lotos" is a munition with a great modernization potential.
Recent ones news about the project CJSC “Lotos” allows you to look to the future with optimism. In November last year, the leadership of the developer organization revealed the current plans and the approved project schedule. Then it was claimed that the prototype of the new self-propelled gun would be sent for testing in the 2019 year, and mass production would start in the 2020. Thus, over the past months, the designers of the Central Research Institute of Precision Engineering have been able to prepare the necessary documentation, meeting the schedule of work. Despite the complexity of the new project, the dates for the start of its next stages remain the same and are not adjusted.
According to reports, several years ago, the domestic defense industry began to create a promising CAO with the code "Zauralets-D". This project involved the development of a universal combat module suitable for mounting on wheeled and tracked chassis. It could be equipped with a 120 or 152 mm caliber gun. In accordance with the features of future operation, the self-propelled gun was supposed to be small in size and weight, determined taking into account the capabilities of the military transport aviation.
In the early summer of 2016, domestic media reported that the Zauralets-D project was abandoned in favor of the new development. The objectives of the new project remained the same, but the customer partially changed the existing terms of reference. Taking into account the updated requirements, the development of a promising CAO under the name “Lotos” was started. It was planned to complete the design in the 2018 year, but, as recent reports show, this stage of work was completed with a noticeable lead.
A few weeks ago, within the framework of the international military-technical forum Army-2017, the Main Missile-Artillery Directorate of the Ministry of Defense for the first time demonstrated a model of a promising self-propelled gun, and also published basic information about the designed model. It was also announced the official designation of self-propelled guns. The result of the development work "Lotos" received the index 2С42.
The proposed version of the CAO 2C42 "Lotos" is proposed to be built on the basis of the modified landing gear of the BMD-4M airborne combat vehicle. Tracked vehicles based on serial units should receive an elongated body and an additional pair of road wheels in the undercarriage. Such processing allows to obtain additional internal volumes necessary for the installation of a new combat compartment with a full-circle turret.
Apparently, the case, based on existing units, will retain basic parameters, such as the level of armor protection. The layout of the internal volumes should also remain the same: the front compartment will accommodate the control compartment, behind which the combat compartment should be placed. The feed is intended for installation of the engine, transmission and other units. A diesel engine and a tracked undercarriage with seven track rollers on each side will have to provide high mobility on roads and on rough terrain, as well as allow the car to float.
On the chase of the roof is proposed to mount a new tower of sufficient size. As shown by the layout, an armor cap of a relatively simple form, formed by several large flat panels, was created as part of the Lotos project. The frontal part of the tower is assembled from inclined parts, and the fighting compartment is closed from above by a horizontal roof. The forehead is equipped with a rectangular embrasure, covered with a cylindrical mask of small width. On the outer surface of the tower, both on the roof and on the stern, there are additional covers of various devices.
The 2X42 project provides for the use of a new combat compartment with a promising 120-mm artillery gun. Continuing the logic of the development of the previous CAO for the Airborne Forces, the Lotos project proposes the use of a universal artillery system capable of firing in different modes using a wide range of ammunition. To expand the circle of tasks to be solved, the tower and its equipment provide guidance in any direction in azimuth and firing with elevation angles from -4 ° to + 80 °.
A combat module of the “Lotos” type should have advanced fire control means built on the basis of modern components. In addition, the proposed maximum automation of various processes. In particular, the possibility of automatic reloading of the instrument must be present. Regardless of the type of ammunition and fire mode, the rate of fire will be 6-8 rounds per minute.
It is proposed to use promising artillery shots of several types, characterized by increased power. With a caliber 120 mm, the new projectile will have the characteristics of existing 152-mm shots. In the future, the industry will continue the development of projectiles, for which existing measures already provide for some measures that simplify further modernization.
According to GRAU, the 2C42 self-propelled gun can hit targets at ranges from 1 to 13 km. The types of targets hit are not specified, but it can be assumed that various types of projectiles will allow you to fight with manpower or unprotected equipment, as well as with armored vehicles or enemy fortifications.
The model, shown on the "Army-2017", received additional weapons in the form of a remotely controlled combat module. A model of such a system, armed with a machine gun rifle caliber, placed on the roof of the tower. With the help of the combat module, the crew will be able to attack manpower or other "soft targets."
The crew of the 2C42 "Lotus" consists of four people. As shown by the mock-up shown earlier, two crew members will be placed in the front of the hull: one seat (driver) is located on the longitudinal axis, the second - to the left and behind of it. Two other crew members should be in the turret and, apparently, responsible for the operation of all existing weapons. The availability of automation equipment for the fighting compartment will greatly simplify their work.
Based on the chassis of a serial armored vehicle, the promising self-propelled artillery guns will differ in increased dimensions, first of all in length. The combat mass of the armored vehicle is defined at the level of 18 t. The dimensions and the mass of the self-propelled guns correspond to the capabilities of the existing military transport aircraft. This will allow the armored vehicle to be transported by air or to parachute landing. Thanks to these capabilities, the Airborne Forces units will be able to have sufficient firepower in different conditions and situations.
Maintaining a serial chassis results in good mobility indicators. The maximum speed of 2С42 on the highway, according to official data, will be 70 km / h. On the ground - up to 40 km / h. Apparently, the self-propelled gun, like the base BMD-4M, will be able to overcome water obstacles by swimming, including with firing from the water. Cruising on the highway - 500 km.
Prospective self-propelled artillery 2C42 "Lotos" is being developed taking into account the future re-equipment of the airborne troops. Universal 120-mm system is considered as a replacement for the existing self-propelled guns of the "Nona" family. In the foreseeable future, relatively old self-propelled guns, which produce their resources, will be removed from service and decommissioned, and at the same time, the troops will receive new serial “Lotos”.
Repeating the main features of the appearance of existing self-propelled artillery guns, a promising model under the code "Lotos" differs in design and characteristics of its main systems. According to the head of the development organization, the new 120-mm cannon has an increased resource and improved fire control. Also announced the creation of new ammunition with enhanced technical and combat characteristics. In addition, new types of shots created for the CAO 2C42 have a certain reserve for modernization and future development.
While the new self-propelled artillery 2C42, intended for airborne troops, exists only in the form of an exhibition layout and design documentation. At the same time, the preparation of the latter was completed just a few days ago - at the end of September. Now defense industry enterprises can start production of various units, of which the first prototype will be assembled soon.
The finished prototype "Lotus" in the near future will be released on the ground to confirm the calculated characteristics. By 2019, it is planned to complete all necessary checks, including state tests. In the latter, the CAO 2C42 will participate together with the prospective control machine Zavet-D. Upon successful completion of the tests, the self-propelled gun and the control vehicle will be put into service with the launch of the series in 2020.
Due to the specifics of their work, the airborne troops need specialized samples of weapons and equipment. The next representatives of this category should be the CAO 2C42 "Lotus" and the control machine "Zavet-D". Part of the work on self-propelled guns has already been completed. In the near future, it will have to confirm its capabilities and after that it will be able to go into service, giving start to the replacement of obsolete equipment.
On the materials of the sites: