China for five years has been developing a modification of Type 99A2 based on the main combat tank Type 99, cnwnews.com reports April 7th.
Currently, the works are at the final stage of testing. Military experts believe that the tank can be equipped with a 140 mm smooth-bore gun capable of penetrating the frontal armor of modern tanks. The gun is capable of firing projectiles of various types, including armor-piercing feathered sub-caliber shells (BOPS) with a uranium core, as well as laser-guided anti-tank missiles imported from Russia. But the technology of this gun is still not very mature, and therefore the existing 125 mm gun or its elongated version may remain as the main armament. It was also reported that in 2009, a small batch of Type 99A2 entered the PLA in trial operation.
The difference between Type 99А2 and the base model is the presence of a larger number of dynamic protection panels, which are installed on the front and sides of the tower. Armor protection should ensure the survivability of the tank from damage by improved 120 mm armor-piercing shells of South Korean and Japanese tanks. Also on the tank will be installed a new active protection system.
The tank is equipped with an anti-aircraft machine gun QJG-02 caliber 14,5 mm (instead of QJC88 caliber 12,7 mm on Type 99). Most likely, the new version of the tank received an improved automatic loader, more simple and reliable in operation.
The 140 mm caliber gun can pierce the front armor of the American tank M1А2, not to mention other third-generation tanks. But China is still holding on to the 125 mm cannon tank Type 99, which limits the firepower of the next versions of the combat vehicle. This gun, developed using the technologies of the Russian 125 mm gun, is already “not very good” for confrontation with modern American and European third-generation tanks. China has already announced the creation of a BOPS with a uranium core, its technologies are almost as good as the American ones. It was also reported that BOPS with a uranium core, released from the experimental 140 mm gun, at a distance of 1400 m struck the frontal armor M1A2. Compared to the base model, the Type 99А2 has a turret with an increased volume in the front, its chassis is enhanced against the effects of anti-tank mine explosions. The tank is equipped with a millimeter-wave radar designed for the new active protection system. But how this system will counteract laser-guided missiles is still unclear. The tank is equipped with a multi-fuel hp 1500 diesel engine. and CH-1000 transmission.
The fire control system (LMS) is also improved. The SLA includes a sight with independent stabilization of the line of sight, a laser rangefinder, a thermal imager, a digital ballistic computer, a large number of sensors, including monitoring weather conditions and the degree of curvature of the gun, an automatic tracking system, a color monitor is mounted in the tower . Images from the imager are transmitted to the driver’s display and the gunner’s sight. In addition, the tank is equipped with an inertial and navigation satellite system, the data of which can be displayed on the displays long before the electronic map lining. The tank is equipped with a modern radio communication system.
The second-generation infrared imager is capable of producing images of objects located at a distance of 7-9 km. MTBF is 4000 hours.
The tank can use data from the US satellite GPS system, but in the future it is possible to use data from the national system “Beidou” 9602, positioning accuracy will be less than 20 m. The system will significantly increase not only the accuracy of determining the location of the tank, but also the situational awareness of the crew on the battlefield.
Tanks Type 99 had a longitudinal engine (longitudinal arrangement of the power system), which occupied a large internal volume, limiting the modernization potential. In 1990-ies, China Northern Industrial Company (China North Industries Corporation) created an export tank MBT-2000 with a transverse layout of the transmission (transverse layout transmission system), the hull length is only 6,487 m, engine power 1200 hp In the course of long trials, it was revealed that the transmission of the MVT-2000 is the best Chinese development in this area, only slightly inferior to the best world models. Some photos of Type 99А2 show that the tank uses the MVT-2000 chassis, but it still needs to be checked.
Probably, the Type 99А2 will receive a new chassis along with getting a new, more powerful power plant. Such an engine can be created on the basis of the 1200-strong diesel 150НВ tank Type 99, its forced version with the power 1500 hp. its characteristics are close to the German MTU MT883. The new diesel engine was tested on the Type 98 tank, which showed a maximum speed of 80 km / h, off-road 60 km / h. The engine's air cleaning system of the Tank Type 99А2 has a double filter, as in the American M1A2.
Development of the tank Type 99А2 is conducted against the background of the creation of new tanks in South Korea and Japan. China is moving away from the practice of producing large quantities of military equipment in the direction of producing high-tech samples in smaller quantities. The Tank Type 99 was developed a little less than 10 years (since 2000 year), the development time Type 99А2 was less than 5 years. The analysis shows that the PLA will use the cheaper 96 Type and their modifications as the main tank fleet, and the more expensive and complex 99А2 Type will be used for effective strikes in critical areas.