“Object 187” - due to its closeness, this tank is one of the most mysterious combat vehicles produced by Soviet industry. Reliable information on the car on the web is practically absent. Those few publications that are available are guilty of speculation, conjecture, and overt errors. The photos offered are the first publicly available images of this tank on the Internet. They captured a model of the 6th experimental (and last) model of the machine. The model was executed by the employees of UKBTM Yuri Panfilov and Vladimir Usov in M1 / 10 for presentation to the ordering office as a visual illustration when closing one of the stages of design and development work. Work on the model took 2 months, and the "modelers" worked on its production mainly at off-hours, sometimes lingering after the main work until late at night. Currently, this model is still owned by UKBTM, while the issue of its transfer to storage and exhibit at the Uralvagonzavod armored vehicles museum is being decided.
Work on the tank "Object 187" led Uralsk KB transport engineering in the framework of the ROC theme "Improving T-72B." The theme “Improving T-72B” was set by the Decree of the Council of Ministers of the USSR on 19 June 1986. The work on the 187 ob went almost in parallel with the work on the tank “Object 188” - the future T-90 (with some advance of the latter) until the middle of the 90-ies of the XX century. Unlike obn.188, it was entirely initiative development of KB. At that time, the Ural KB was still able to afford such “liberties”, naturally, relying on financial support from UVZ as a potential production plant. Both cars - ob.187 and ob.188 - evolved in the direction of further development of the tank type T-72. However, unlike Ob.188, when working on the 187, the design team headed by V.I. Potkin laid a deeper change in the design of the machine compared to the original T-72B design. The direct supervisor of the tank work was the deputy chief designer of the design bureau, A.S. Schelgachev. A radical decision was the rejection of the “revolutionary” design of the T-60 case imposed on the 64’s Tagil design bureau in the end. The layout of the machine has undergone a slight decompression, which positively affected both ergonomics and protection of the VLD enclosure. Due to the elongation of the nose, the driver’s location remained deep inside the hull, as a result of which the shafts of the observation devices began to go out through the hull roof, and not directly through the VLD, like on the T-64 and its genetic heirs - the notorious weakened “neckline” in the middle disappeared VLD. The same decision made it possible to arrange reservations at more rational inclination angles to counteract modern BPS.
The machines were installed tower new design - in contrast to the traditional casting, its design was made of welded sheet steel of medium hardness. The design and production technology of such towers was developed jointly by the Research Institute of Steel, UKBTM and Uralvagonzavod. At that time, work was almost simultaneously carried out on welded towers for UKBTM (ob.187 and 188) and for HKBT (T-80UD). Tower 187 obscured the most impressive dimensions, especially in the stern. A major contribution to the development of towers for Tagil machines and their protection was made by Yu.N. Kondratyev.
The “iron” armor of the tank was complemented by a new complex of dynamic protection - the prototype of the current complex of the universal remote control "Relic". According to some, not quite reliable data, the protection complex ob.187 had the name “Malachite”. The protection scheme was complemented by the lattice screens and the “Curtain” CEM with the OTLU and PU of the 902A system.
The main armament of the tank was the 125-mm smoothbore gun of increased ballistics 2A66 (D-91T), developed in Sverdlovsk at the “Plant No.9” - in the famous Petrovsky artillery design bureau. Together with the gun, a new armored-piercing-sifting projectile 3BM-39 was developed, the OCR “Anker” cipher with an elongation factor of more than 20. It was a uranium OBPS monoblock with a new separable pallet. WU of this BPS consisted of caliber and light composite sabot coils; the latter had a * -shaped section. At the same time, the plumage was made of light alloys and with a span several times smaller than the caliber. Work on a new shot led THEM. The bulk of the testing of the new gun and the shot was carried out at the NTIIM test site. The new gun externally differed by the presence of the muzzle brake. DT had a single-chamber design of reduced efficiency and served more to divert gases from the line of sight of the guided missile, and not to relieve recoil forces. At the same time, the upgraded 2А46М (D-81ТМ) gun was installed on some samples during operation.
At the time of development, the 187 was equipped with the most advanced SLA in the world - something similar on the tanks of armies of potential enemies began to appear only at the end of the 1990s. The LMS was based on the elements 1А45. The great merits in the adaptation of this complex to obn. 187 and ob.xnumx belong to Yu. N. Neugebauer and VM Bystritsky. One of the innovations introduced for the first time in the domestic tank building industry was the use of micro connectors in control circuits, which significantly reduced the volume and weight of cable routes. The credit for this also belongs to Yuri Neugebauer.
On prototypes of the car were tested several types of power plants and transmissions, including GTE. During the tests, the Chelyabinsk H-shaped monoblock А-85-2 with the power 1200 hp was recognized as the most promising SU. Due to the overall features of the engine in the MTO, it was located in the longitudinal pattern (as there used to be B-2 on T-34). Among other things, this location simplified its docking with the GOP. Initially, exhaust pipes obn.xnumx with X-shaped were positioned side by side, later the exhaust along the boards along the fenders was taken out of the stern. MTO works on 187 were conducted by E. B. Babylon, O. A. Curax, Kharlov V. I., Ivanov Yu.I. The car used a new chassis with a parallel RMS and a metal treadmill. If we compare a caterpillar ob.187 with a caterpillar ob.187, then the first thing that attracts attention is the shape and placement of the lugs - if you mentally circle the lugs with one line, you get an oval (on T-188 / -80 - a rectangle, on BMPT - trapezium). The comb is solid (on the T-90 / -80 is "brace"). The links of the track are cast with the use of subsequent machining, which, of course, is a more technological and economical way compared to the stamping of the links T-90, T-64 and T-80. Vane hydraulic shock absorbers were installed on 90 and 1 rollers (early samples) and on 6, 1 and 2 rollers (samples №6 and №5). The dynamic course of the road wheels was significantly increased.
Machines were built in pairs in three series. Each series was significantly different from the previous one, clearly demonstrating the evolution of the type and direction of phased testing of assemblies, mechanisms, units and systems. Inside each series of cars also had differences, but less significant.
The prototypes No. 1 and No. 2, with the possible exception of the hull, were closest to the appearance of the future T-90. The modified Chelyabinsk V-type diesel engine B-1MS hp with power 84 was used as a power plant on №840. This power plant in the subsequent almost completely migrated to the ob.188. At the end of the test cycle, Sample No. 1 underwent disassembly and defecation, after which its body was used in the manufacture of sample No. 3. Sample No. 2 was equipped with the already 1000-strong V-type turbocharged diesel engine KD-34 (B-85), developed in Barnaul. In this form, the machine successfully passed a large cycle of sea trials in Turkmenistan, having withstood the high temperature and dustiness of the air. Some time later, after returning to Nizhny Tagil, the car underwent additional equipment, after which it was shot at the NTIIMa test site (Positel). The results of the real impact of modern anti-tank weapons showed outstanding results in terms of protection. The shot machine sample was disposed of.
The prototype №3 was originally intended for a variety of "barbaric" experiments related to the possibility of destruction of the structure, and for this reason was never fully complete. Unlike samples No. 1 and No. 2, which had a cast tower classical for the T-72 type, sample No. 3 had a new design tower - from rolled armor plates 40 mm thick, connected to each other in welding. Geometrically, the Sample Tower No. 3 very closely resembles the modern welded turrets of the T-90C, T-90CA and T-90А tanks, which are the last of their design and carry on their constructive genealogy. Significant external differences of the tower of sample No.3 from the already welded welded towers on T-90 are the cutting form of armor plates, welded joints, the round discharge hatch (it is oval on T-90), the presence of the FVU tower in the left aft of the tower roof (on the T-90, as on the T-72, the PSU is located in the body of the machine). On samples No.1, No.2 and No.3, the hull is made according to the classical scheme of the Soviet tank, but with the difference that its nose was extended, and WLD was given an even greater angle of inclination. The driver's seat at the same time as it moved aside deeper into the body. Inspection devices in the number of 3-x pieces were mounted in the manhole cover. These events made it possible to get rid of all the hotly “beloved” Achilles heel in the form of a weakened zone in the upper central part of the VLD of the hull of T-64, T-72 and T-80 machines. As an experiment on the prototype No. 3, a native MTO with CD-34 was cut out and MTO T-80U was implanted with GTD-1250. At the same time, an additional hydraulic shock absorber was installed on the 5 th track roller. In this form, the car passed the tests at the stand in Nizhny Tagil and later rolled on the armored troop-launch vehicle in Kubinka near Moscow. Sample No. 3 also passed complex PAZ tests at the nuclear center in Arzamas. The installation of the turbine on sample No. XXUMX was rather a forced step, an attempt at survival in the current political situation at that time, and pursued two goals. The goal of 3 is to knock out the trump cards from the “turbine” lobby. Show that Tagil also has an almost finished machine with the then popular GTE. Moreover, the machine is structurally more perfect, perfect in everything, well, except perhaps for the MTO and its control system identical to T-1U (made according to the officially transferred Omsk KD). The goal of 80 is to show fans of the gas turbine SU the advantages of new high-power diesel engines, since Not only tests, but already theoretical calculations showed a clear loss of the turbine SU in many ways.
Sample No. 4 had a case similar to the case of sample No. 3 before it was redrawn into a “turbinnik”. The shape and design of the welded tower was changed, its dimensions increased in the midsection and aft. The meteorological sensor for entering the firing conditions, installed in the aft part of the tower, is visually distinct from the usual TWO modern T-90. The basis of the SU was the new X-shaped Chelyabinsk A-85-2 engine with 1200 horsepower. The fan cooling system, traditional for the Nizhny Tagil structures, already had two centrifugal fans that were shifted from the center of the stern to the right and left, respectively. The exhaust pipes of the diesel engine were positioned side by side with a turn along the fender and the discharge of gases to the stern down. At the same time, the significantly elongated path promoted good cooling of exhaust gases, effectively dissipating heat, thereby reducing thermal visibility to the level of the general background. Compared with model No. 3, the position of the APU on the right fender track has changed. The changes also affected the undercarriage - the traditional sloth with “windows” was replaced with a “continuous” one - without openings and openings. The complex of built-in dynamic protection “Contact-V”, mounted on samples from №1 to №3, was replaced by a new design. The DZ extinguishing panels on the VLD were made of fairly massive titanium plates. Subsequently, when transferring the machine to 38 NIII MO in Kubinka, these panels were replaced with an 30-mm steel sheet with milled grooves imitating the missing panels to prevent their “accidental” loss. This ersatz design was fastened to the VLD enclosure with four bolts.
The prototypes No.5 and No.6 underwent the most significant changes, becoming the most advanced machines of this type. The nose of the hull has increased in size and changed shape. If the noses of the T-72 and the early samples about the 187 resembled a chisel, the nose on the samples No. XXUMX and No. XXUMX acquired a tooth-like shape. The length of the "bare" case (excluding the fenced shelves) was 7,2 m, width (similar) - 2,17 m. Inspection devices from the mechvod hatch are moved for him towards the tower. Again, the welded tower has grown in size. Its overall width, excluding DZ, was 3,12 m. The protection of the side projections of the tower was increased very seriously. The striking exterior distinctive feature of the No. 5 and No. 6 sample towers is an extremely wide feed - the widest of all welded towers designed in the Soviet Union. On these machines, as well as on sample No. 4, a new DZ complex was installed, however, in comparison with the Quartet, on the fifth and sixth vehicles, the extinguishing panels were made not of titanium, but of armor steel. The design of DZ containers installed in the frontal part and on the cheekbones of the tower was also changed. If on the Contact-V complex, the installation of active elements occurs through narrow covers in the ends of the blocks, then in this case the entire upper surface of the block itself was one large removable cover. When unscrewing the 4 bolts, we got easy access to installing / replacing elements both in the upper part of the block and in the lower part. The aft part of the tower was shielded by impressive aluminum spares. The side and aft projections of the hull were shielded with lattice screens made according to the Research and Development Institute of Steel from an armor plate 4 mm thick and installed on top of the traditional rubber-fabric screen. Considering that when installing the screens, the railway gauge was not observed, in the transport position they were completely dismantled. Both cars were equipped with X-models A-85-2, but differed by the type of transmission. On the sample number XXUMX transmission was traditional - mechanical, while the sample number XXUMX already had GOP. A large area of radiators required for effective cooling a larger volume of air passage. To this end, at the insistence of O.A. Curaxes four windows of the grids over the radiator (sample No. XXUMX) were combined into two larger sizes (samples No. XXUMX and No. XXUMX). To ensure the movement under OPVT and save mass, such large covers of the input grids of the cooling system are not made of metal, as, say, on T-72 or T-90, but from rubberized fabric. Because of the differences in transmissions on the sample No. 5, the left latticed window instead of the strictly rectangular shape received a cutout under the filler cap, which can probably serve as the only external difference between these samples. In their final appearance, these machines have another noticeable difference: on the “five” there are installed rollers of a “new” type, with a vamping shape similar to the rollers of the second prototype BMPT (rev.199K), however, during operation and testing, the set of rollers could be different .
Ural KB made great efforts in a fruitless attempt to put this wonderful machine into service with the Soviet Army. However, despite successful tests and obviously high combat and technical potential, the machine was not adopted by the Defense Ministry. Instead, customers from the Ministry of Defense once again chose half-measures and concentrated their attention on finishing work on the 188 - symbiosis of the T-72B case with part of the X.UMNX systems. Once again, almost ready for the series and a very promising machine gave way to a simpler and cheaper series. In a slightly modified version repeated история with the prevention of a series of such remarkable for its time machines, as ob.167М and ob.172М-2М (-3М).
Currently, 4 machines are still alive: prototypes No.3, No.4, No.5 and No.6. All of them are at the disposal of the Cuban 38 Research Institute of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and represent a very sad sight. Machines are dismantled, aluminum boxes of spare parts have been stolen by scrap metal workers, and even a titanium roof of MTO has been stolen from the “turbinnik”! At the insistent requests of the Uralvagonzavod museum for the transfer of at least one tank of xNUMX for restoration and subsequent demonstration in the UVZ museum complex, the GABTU invariably refuses and refers to secrecy. However, according to some data, currently Kubinka still plans to carry out car repairs with their subsequent open demonstration.
Apparently, it should be added to the above that according to the ideas of his Chief Designer - Vladimir Ivanovich Potkin - ob.187 was to become the basis for the design and manufacture of a whole family of combat vehicles that made up the combat complex, and also serve as a basis for designing promising, even more powerful and perfect tanks.