A few months before the exhibition, an active discussion began on the possible display of various new products. In particular, information appeared about the planned demonstration of the prototype. tank based on the heavy armored tracked platform Armata. Later it became known that this car will be shown at RAE-2013, but only representatives of the defense industry, the country's leadership and the Ministry of Defense will get access to it. The general public, in turn, will be forced to wait until permission to demonstrate the sample appears.
Heavy tracked platform "Armata" is one of the most interesting and yet mysterious projects of recent times. The development of the project began approximately in 2009-2010 years, but the details about the progress of work and technical features are still classified, and the amount of information available is small and often information contradicts each other. In this regard, there are various versions designed to answer existing questions. It is safe to say that a large part of the existing assumptions about the Armata platform will not be confirmed in the end. Nevertheless, in recent times a lot of new information has appeared that can help compile a plausible version of the status and details of the project.
20 August in Moscow, the exhibition "Day of the Ministry of Defense Innovation." At one of the event booths, in the closed part of the exhibition, mock-ups of equipment based on the Armata platform were shown. For some reason, for several hours after the end of the exhibition, photographs of these models were available to anyone. As follows from the available images, the Armata platform can become the basis not only for the tank. Probably in the near future there will be a tank bridge construction, a heavy flamethrower system and a minelayer on a single chassis. In addition, the photographs from one of last year’s events featured a model of some self-propelled artillery. It should also be noted that the existing models of machines based on the "Armata" can talk about the creation of a transport-loading machine for a heavy flamethrower system, an armored repair and recovery vehicle, and other types of equipment needed by the troops. It was previously stated that together with the tank in the early stages of the project a heavy infantry fighting vehicle unified with it would be developed.
Attempts to establish the details of the Armata project, according to information available in open sources, constantly face not only a shortage of information, but also problems of a different nature. So, when comparing the model of ACS with the models shown on the “Day of Innovations”, it is easy to see that the layouts have a number of serious differences. The interpretation of this fact turns into a separate complex task. It is possible to explain a different type of layouts both at different stages of the project, in accordance with which they were made, and by attempts of the developer organization and the Ministry of Defense to throw in disinformation. If the second version turns out to be correct, then the appearance of the tank and other vehicles based on the Armata platform may differ significantly from how it was presented on the basis of previously available information.
Bearing in mind the problems with the amount and reliability of information, we will try to establish the approximate appearance of an armored platform, which in the near future will become the basis for several types of combat vehicles. It is already known that the tank "Armata" has an unusual layout for the domestic armored vehicles of this class. First of all, it is necessary to note the original solution with a habitable volume, made in the form of an armored capsule. It will accommodate the entire crew of three, who with the help of a large number of instruments and controls will be able to monitor the environment and control various systems of the combat vehicle.
The crew capsule will be placed in front of the armored hull, behind the frontal part, providing a high level of protection. Due to this arrangement, the defeat of the tank from the front course corners is unlikely to lead to the death of the crew. In addition, tankers will be isolated from fuel and ammunition, which will increase their chances of survival. One of the most interesting questions in the light of the survivability of a combat vehicle is the location of the engine compartment (MTO).
The use of developments on the classic layout of the tank with the placement of logistics in the stern will not allow competently dispose of the internal hull volumes for the location of the troop compartment in the form of an infantry fighting vehicle. Thus, the Armata platform probably has an engine and transmission in front of the hull. This solution has both pros and cons. The first can be attributed to an increased level of crew protection, to the second - the loss of mobility in the event of a successful enemy attack. At the front MTO location, the engine protects the crew at the cost of its own performance, which is why anti-tank ammunition with sufficient characteristics, without harming the crew, can immobilize the tank and make it an easy target.
Disputes about the possible placement of MTO do not subside so far. Stop them can only publish official data on the project. Moreover, one cannot rule out such a scenario, in which disputes will not stop, but will turn into a new plane. For example, the public interested in military technology can start a discussion of the appropriateness of the applied solution.
There is information about the engine model intended for use in the Armata platform. This will be one of the modifications of the X-shaped diesel engine A-85 with power up to 1500-1800 HP. According to some sources, the power plant of the platform will allow the creation of combat vehicles weighing up to 65 tons with mobility at the level of modern domestic main tanks.
A-85-3 (sometimes referred to as 2А12-3, 12ЧНХNUMX / 15 or 16Н12)
Chassis prospective armored vehicles is one of the strangest and most ambiguous aspects of the entire project. There is no exact information even about the number of road wheels. According to the version common in the past, the Armata should have six rollers each on board. In the future, there was information about the elongated body and eight-rolling chassis. Finally, the models shown on the Innovation Day of the Ministry of Defense were equipped with seven rollers on board. Exact information about the type of suspension is not available.
Placing the entire crew of a combat vehicle inside a single volume with a high level of protection directly speaks about some other layout features. So, it is already known that the fighting compartment of the tank on the basis of the Armat platform will be made uninhabitable. This means that all operations related to the preparation for the shot will be carried out automatically. For this loading mechanisms, guidance, etc. must be done in such a way that they can independently carry out the commands of the crew located in the armored capsule. The main weapons tank "Armata" can become a smooth-bore gun 2А82 caliber 125 millimeters. According to its characteristics, this gun surpasses the latest modifications of the 2А46 launcher and is capable of using the entire range of its ammunition. Often, it is suggested that the promising tank will increase its firepower at the expense of the 152-mm 2-83 gun. A similar way of development of the modern main tank was tested during the 195 Object project and showed its advantages.
Amount of ammunition perspective tank depends on the size of the shots and the available volume of the fighting compartment. Thus, the capacity of the automatic loader can be estimated in 30-45 separate-sleeve ammunition caliber 125 or 152 millimeter.
Another consequence of the original layout of the tank is the need to create a new fire control system (SLA), capable of ensuring the combat operation of the tank with an uninhabited fighting compartment. It is assumed that the promising tank will receive a modern SLA, which will use the best practices on the latest projects in this area. In addition, it cannot be excluded that the Armata tank will receive a new information and control system that will monitor the operation and health of various components and assemblies, as well as interact with the SLA and communication systems. Currently, the most advanced of the domestic fire control systems is considered to be the Kalina complex, designed for the T-90CM tank. Probably, the developments in this MSA will be applied in the relevant parts of the Armata project.
Placing the crew in a single armored capsule may indicate that a tank based on the Armata platform will receive a developed system for monitoring the environment, equipped with a large number of video cameras. The basis of the sighting system of the tank will be multi-channel sights that can work at any time of the day and in any weather conditions. Also it is worth expecting that the tank "Armata" will receive a panoramic commanding sight, which is considered an essential component of the electronic equipment of a modern tank.
As you can see, at the present time it is possible to form a fairly plausible version of the appearance of a promising main tank based on the Armata heavy tracked platform. However, this is only an assumption based on fragmentary information and therefore the actual features of the project may - or even should - be different from it. The general informational situation around the project, including the possible distribution of misinformation, only contributes to this. You can check these or other guesses in only one way: compare them with a real combat vehicle. Here again the problem of secrecy arises. The first prototype of the Armata tank may have been shown in the closed part of the exposition of the exhibition Russian Arms Expo-2013, access to which was obtained only by the leaders of the country and the military department. The timing of the open demonstration of the new tank was not reported to everyone.
It is unlikely that a tank based on the Armat platform will be shown to the general public by the end of this year. Most likely, the "premiere" of a promising combat vehicle will take place only in the next 2014 year as part of an event. By that time, the first prototype of the tank should begin testing. According to the latest information on this, the delivery of the first production tanks "Armata" will begin in 2015 year. From this we can conclude about further work within the project. Probably, the Ministry of Defense and the organization-developer (Ural Design Bureau of Heavy Machinery - UKBTM) intend to test and fine-tune the new machine as soon as possible, and then launch its mass production.
Thus, in the first months of 2014, the premiere open demonstration of a new tank and materials about other vehicles based on the Armata heavy platform can take place. Then the customer and the executor of the project can publish information about the name of the promising machine. While there is no information on the index, which will receive the tank and other armored vehicles. Some time ago, information appeared in foreign media, according to which the equipment based on the Armata platform has the working names “148 Object”, “149 Object” and “152 Object”. There is still no official confirmation or denial of this information. The same situation is observed with troop indices: different sources state that the prospective tank will be called T-14 (by the year of its adoption), T-99 (by analogy with previous tanks), etc.
All assumptions about the new tracked platform can be confirmed or refuted only by official information. Hopefully, it remains to wait a bit and in the coming months, the Ministry of Defense and UKBTM will publish the first information about promising armored vehicles on the basis of a single tracked platform.
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