Why did the Defense Ministry need so many models, we will talk separately, now that first of all attracted attention.
And first of all I want to talk about the differences not from AEK and AK, but AK-15 and AK-12.
Actually, the only difference is in the caliber. 7,62 and 5,45.
What caused the return to the caliber, from which not only our army, but also potential adversaries and allies tried to leave the 70s of the last century? But the affairs of the opponents are not so interesting to us, but for our own talk and think.
Indeed, the presence of two automatic machines with a caliber of 7,62-mm is nothing more than a kind of rehabilitation of the cartridge of the sample 1943 of the year. Or his second life, if you want. What is the point?
And the point is that the main task of the modern automaton cartridge is the defeat of manpower at distances up to 400-500 meters. In this case, the shooting is assumed from not quite stable positions - standing, from the knee, on the go. Accordingly - his majesty automatic fire bursts. And the effectiveness of firing bursts is very dependent on recoil. The higher it is, the lower the efficiency.
This is precisely the reason for the presence of low-impulse cartridges in the main armies of the world. 5,56 x 45 in NATO, 5,45 x 39 in Russia and 5,8 x 42 in the PRC Army.
Pros: less weight weapons, small recoil impulse, high accuracy, more wearable ammunition.
Cons: high tendency to rebound, less penetration.
Indeed, the ability of the domestic 5,45-mm bullet to ricochet off the branch has long been known. NATO’s ammunition is no better.
American soldiers began complaining about their ammunition back in Afghanistan. Ricochets and insufficient stopping action.
And at the beginning of the 2000-x were presented new cartridges: 6,5 x 39 Grendel and 6,8 x 43 Remington SPC. Both cartridges were offered as promising future military ammunition. The reasoning is clear: increasing the caliber provides better ballistics and more reliable target destruction as compared with the standard 5,56 x 45 cartridge, with relative preservation of the recoil momentum.
And even earlier, in the 60-70-ies of the last century, the Soviet and American military considered the possibility of switching to micro-caliber systems, caliber smaller than 5 millimeters. By the way, the Europeans also did not lag behind, the same G-11 had a caliber 4,7-mm from "NK".
The benefits were obvious: no returns, high flatness and a light cartridge. And again, more wearable stock of cartridges and more of them in the weapons shop. In the same G-11 - 50.
But micro-caliber (as well as sub-caliber in the USSR) ammunition systems did not pass the cost test.
And in 70's, our designers came to the conclusion: the minimum possible caliber of the machine is about five and a half millimeters.
If less, there is a set of problems that Soviet designers V.P. Gryazev, P.A. Fadeev, A.G. Shipunov and D.I. Shiryaev encountered when developing the AO-27 subcaliber machine gun.
If more, for example, according to the opinion of the Russian gunsmith Vladimir Fedorov, the optimum caliber for automatic weapons is 6,5 of a millimeter, this entailed a reduction in ammunition (due to the greater mass of the cartridge) and a decrease in the effectiveness of shooting. Not in terms of range or penetration, but in terms of quantity.
But the most important thing, of course, is efficiency. In fact, all the cartridges we are talking about were developed in the last century. And since the birth of that cartridge 7,62-mm, that 5,45-mm, not that much water has flowed under, much of which was invented.
For example, Kevlar. And a bunch of his colleagues in countering the pool.
The presence of a light but durable body armor in today's day is the norm for a fighter, and not something supernatural. And here the 5,45-mm and 5,56-mm cartridges began to gradually lose to modern materials.
But let's not forget about the main thing: switching to a new cartridge is not even money. This is the amount. And, huge.
That is why in the United States, in general, they favorably regarded the cartridges of the caliber 6,5-mm and 6,8-mm, but as a sniper cartridge for work at the near (up to 1 000 m) distance. Replacing the cartridge 7,62 x 51. But no more than that.
We, unlike the USA, have even less money. Not to mention the amounts.
But we have a cartridge. Sample 1943 of the year, 7,62 x 39. In 18 views. And all with the same advantages and disadvantages in the form of weight and other things. But it is able to pierce brickwork from a hundred meters to a depth of 15 centimeters, and a sheet of steel armor seven millimeters thick to pierce a BZ bullet from 300 meters.
Bulletproof vests ... Well, someone as lucky.
In general, it is necessary to agree with the views of many gunsmiths, who believe that the caliber 7,62-mm is still relevant.
After all, in which case, the wrong army wins, which is armed with modern ammunition with cool bullets, but the one whose soldiers can afford to spend 100, 200 and even 500 bullets to neutralize one enemy fighter. This is exactly the option when quantity decides.
The huge potential for the production of 7,62-mm cartridges, we certainly guarantee an uninterrupted supply of ammunition to the army.
Improving the properties of propelling charges, ballistic and penetrating properties of bullets is a task rather for the corresponding design bureau, which, if equipped and equipped, should not become a problem.