Military Review

Civilian Tankprom

This fall, Moscow will host an exhibition and conference dedicated to domestic tank industry. The working title of the exhibition is “Unknown Tankprom”. The initiator and one of the organizers of the event is the Uralvagonzavod Research and Production Corporation (UVZ), the largest armored holding of modern Russia, which brought together the most famous developers of domestic weapons in its structure.

The exhibition and conference will be significant events for Tankprom, an industry whose activities and experience have not yet been adequately explored. Studying it seems to be the most important step for solving the large-scale tasks facing the Russian defense industry today.

In addition, the exhibition and conference will be the next step in the implementation of the large-scale project “Tankprom Museum”. The idea of ​​building a museum also arose at UVZ as a possible central event of the centenary of the domestic tank industry in 2020.

History Tank industry

The history of Tankprom as a particular industry is still not fully known even to the people working in it. Although for the first time the idea of ​​the need for its creation was expressed even during World War II by Commissar of the Tank Industry Vyacheslav Malyshev. After the Great Victory, in order No. 254С from 25 of May 1945, it was noted that “in order to preserve and summarize the great experience of the Soviet tank-building industry both in creating first-class machine designs and in organizing mass production of tank technology in Soviet Union".

Civilian TankpromCommissar proceeded not so much from humanitarian, as from practical considerations. In a separate letter to the heads of factories and institutes, he explained the need for such work: “The workers of the tank industry have a lot of experience in creating new types of tanks and engines, experience in organizing large industries and have learned good lessons from life ...

But this rich experience and material accumulated over the years can be lost. In addition, much needs to be subjected to critical analysis and to draw lessons from past work, so as not to repeat mistakes in the future. ”

Unfortunately, for unknown reasons, the order was executed only partially. The main enterprises of the industry, including the Nizhny Tagil Ural Tank Plant No. 183 (now the head enterprise of the Uralvagonzavod corporation), prepared materials on their history of tank building from the moment they were established up to and including 1945. However, the synthesis work has not appeared. Neither Vyacheslav Malyshev nor his successors of the Soviet era thought about the museum embodiment of the history of Tankprom because of the absolute secrecy of the topic.

Later, in the 80 and subsequent years, experts prepared a series of generalizing works on the development of designs of domestic tanks. Later, writings appeared, mainly in the form of dissertations for a degree, for individual groups of factories. As for the industry, it remained a subject of study only in relation to the period of the Great Patriotic War.

The task of the museum embodiment of Tankprom, as far as is known, has never even been set.

Meanwhile, Tankprom was and is of great importance not only in ensuring the country's defense, but also in the functioning of the economy as a whole. In the first half of the 20th century, it was the most technologically advanced part of the domestic industry, and in the second half of the century it was among the top five such industries. The Tankprom system allowed the most efficient accumulation, adaptation to production and distribution of the highest achievements of national and world science. It was in the tank industry that the exchange of technology between civilian and military activities was most easily and fully carried out.

Railway rolling stock, industrial tractors and diesel engines have always and at all times been included in the list of the main products of the industry. Moreover, Tankprom repeatedly became the technological base for the creation of new high-tech branches of the Soviet industry, such as the nuclear industry or rocket production.

If we compare Tankprom with other sectors of the military-industrial complex, then it is this industry that has proved to be the most universal tool, effective in solving both defense and major national economic tasks. The constant supply of civilian production of tank factories with dual-purpose technologies has made their national economy products very competitive, including in world markets. The effectiveness of this fusion of civilian and military technologies manifested itself particularly clearly in the crisis 90-s, which is clearly seen in the example of Uralvagonzavod, when, despite everything, the Nizhny Tagil enterprise not only preserved its integrity, but also saved a unique technological complex and the main part of highly qualified collective

So, the scientific and technical reserve of the Soviet Tankprom, as it turned out, is quite enough to win positions in the post-Soviet space and in the world market. But for the further preservation, and especially the development of the industry, the capabilities of even such large enterprises as Uralvagonzavod were not enough. That is why in 2007, a presidential decree was signed on the creation of a corporation that unites in its structure more than 30 industrial enterprises, design offices and research institutes located in five federal districts of Russia and abroad. The parent company - Nizhny Tagil Uralvagonzavod - today the only tank conveyor in Russia.

It is logical that it was at UVZ - a corporation, which is essentially a direct heir to the Soviet tank industry, the idea arose of summarizing the experience and writing the history of the industry, creating the Tankprom museum.

Goals and objectives

Today, the structure of the Soviet Tankprom is no longer a state secret. The formation of the new look of the industry, the study of the historically determined structure and principles of activity are important tools for its reform.

Thus, the main object of study and museification is the system of the domestic tank industry, which means the totality of enterprises, research, technological and design institutions, united in various historical forms into a single, designed for the development and production of armored weapons and equipment (BTTViT) industry.

In particular, in 30-ies these were Spetsmashtrest and then Glavspetsmash, during the Great Patriotic War - People's Commissariat of the Tank Industry, in the post-war period - 1-e Main Administration (Glavtank) of the Ministry of Transport Engineering, 12-e Main Directorate of the State Defense Committee engineering, 6 and 7 are the main directorates of the Ministry of Defense Industry. Today, mainly the tank industry is united in the Uralvagonzavod Research and Production Corporation OJSC.

It should be noted that during all the specified time, there were separate enterprises operating BTVT, but not officially included in Tankprom. However, the design and scientific and technological principles of the production of military equipment for them have always been developed and approved by Tankprom. Therefore, these companies, as well as collectors from other industries, are an auxiliary direction of the proposed project.

The main objectives of the project:

representation in the optimal for the modern use of the form of historical experience of scientific and production activities of Tankprom;
demonstration of the genetic connection of the modern corporation and the Soviet Tankprom;
the creation of a large national scale of historical research and educational center "Museum Tankprom";
promoting the formation of a single corporate culture based on historical examples and traditions of the past.

Achieving these goals is possible in the course of the following historical research and museum exhibition tasks:

study of the history of the formation and development of the structure of the tank industry, as well as the mechanisms of interaction of its constituent parts;
a comprehensive study of the history of enterprises and institutions of Tankprom, both now included in the corporation and previously held in it;
the study of methods, methodology, strengths and constraints of innovation at different stages of development;
study of the interaction of the defense and civilian industries at Tankprom enterprises;
study of the contribution of Tankprom to the defense capability of the USSR and the Russian Federation and the contribution of the industry to the development of the national economy;
study of the geopolitical significance of Tankprom activity;
the identification, collection and study of documentary materials and objects of museum value associated with the history of the industry;
development of an extended thematic structure, thematic and exhibition plan, technical specifications for the creation of the architectural and artistic project of the museum.

A mandatory component of the project is a monographic study of the history of Tankprom: it is on its basis that thematic sections of the exposition will be formed, as well as the acquisition of exhibits.

The corporation is sure: the creation of the museum will open up new opportunities and prospects for the development of museum departments of enterprises and institutions of the industry. In particular, the work on the Tankprom Museum will be a powerful incentive in the museum building of the entire corporation. It should be emphasized that the creation of the Tankprom Museum does not imply duplication of existing expositions and precludes the transfer of museum funds.


The location of the Museum Tankprom should be Nizhny Tagil, according to organizers. There are several important factors for this.

First of all, this is the location in Nizhny Tagil of the head enterprise of the UVZ research and production corporation, which combines the modern Tankprom. Uralvagonzavod has a rich history and today is the only domestic manufacturer capable of mass production of tanks and engineering vehicles based on them. Due to the fact that the company is located next to the museum, it will be convenient to serve large-sized exhibits - existing samples of military and civilian equipment.

The second important factor is that the state demonstration and exhibition center of armament and military equipment is located in Nizhny Tagil, where large-scale international exhibitions are held. The development of exhibition activities involves the development of tourism in the city and the region as a whole.

Nizhny Tagil is considered one of the most promising centers of industrial tourism. The city has a unique network of industrial museums: this is the Local History Museum and the Kuibyshev Plant-Museum under the open sky. In addition, Uralvagonzavod has its own exhibition complex, which includes the Museum of History, the exhibition of rolling stock under the open sky and the Museum of armored vehicles. The latter today is probably one of the main attractions of the city. It is included in the register of the most attractive tourist sites of the Sverdlovsk region and has a unique collection of Uralvagonzavod production vehicles, ranging from the legendary World War II tank T-34 to the latest developments of the corporation.

As conceived by the creators, the Tankprom Museum should be located in close proximity to the central entrance and the Uralvagonzavod exhibition complex. One of the options is the construction of a special building made of lightweight structures, which was originally designed for the museum structure. In addition, there is a beautiful building on the territory of the enterprise, where the garage of the motor workshop is currently located. Built in 1938 year, it is a true monument of industrial constructivism. On the facade of the house there are unique bas-reliefs that reflect the history of the development of transport. The idea of ​​placing museum objects in this building originated back in the 80s of the last century with Veniamin Sotnikov, then the general director of Uralvagonzavod.

The architectural and artistic solution of the exposition must take into account the peculiarities of the architecture of the historical building and the subject of the show. Constructivism will become the leading style of interiors of premises and expositions. Only the Hall of Fame Tankprom is proposed to stand in the style of the "Stalin Empire", which is often called the style of the winners, imperial.

The museum project should provide for the possibility of excursions on both the extended and the shortened route. It is designed for the perception of wide circles of visitors - from schoolchildren to industry leaders and academic scientists.

The main information blocks of the exposition are primarily intended for a young specialist, a student of a technical university and a technical school, and a high school student. At the same time, on an emotional level, the exposition should be of interest to the younger student as well.

The exposition will be created on the basis of the wide use of museum interiors, installations and information technologies, allowing to avoid overloading the exposition space.

Particular attention in the design should be given to providing opportunities for museum-pedagogical activity in the exposition itself and in the premises of interactive zones, in particular, holding cycle sessions both with organized groups and with single visitors, the functioning of various societies, associations at the museum.

The big introductory section will be the Hall of Fame Tankprom, and the final - “Uralvagonzavod: the largest machine-building corporation of Russia and the world today and tomorrow.” The development of the structure of a large enterprise in the industry will be shown on the example of Uralvagonzavod, and electronic versions of the museums of other enterprises and institutions of the corporation are also assumed. The exposition will include a section focused on specialists and students of technical universities, - “The Unified Scientific and Technological Complex of Tankprom”.

So, the Tankprom Museum will be a natural addition to the museum network of Nizhny Tagil, the culminating project in the development of the tourist infrastructure of the city.

First steps

It was in Nizhny Tagil that the first event for the implementation of the Tankprom Museum project was held. Last spring, an All-Russian scientific-practical conference “Tankprom. Century XX ". It was organized by Uralvagonzavod Scientific Production Corporation OJSC, the Institute of the History of Natural Science and Technology named after S. I. Vavilov of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Polytechnical Museum of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation.

The main purpose of the conference is the beginning of an expert dialogue between scientists, museum workers and production workers about the very possibility of creating such an exposition as Tankprom, forming a common understanding of the subject and direction of work, identifying those experts and specialists who could join the working group on project implementation.

Already in their first actions, the organizers tried not to repeat the mistakes of the past and attracted not only industry specialists, but also representatives of other fields of knowledge. The conference was attended by the largest scientists of the industry, workers of the museums of the tank industry, well-known journalists who have long been working in the industry, veterans and active workers of the Tankprom system.

The bulk of the reports showed the highest level of the conference: experts from Nizhny Tagil, Yekaterinburg, Chelyabinsk and Moscow in their presentations demonstrated deep analytical work using an extensive chronology, depth in terms of the archive, industry-wide. In their materials, the conference participants linked Tankprom with chemistry, metallurgy, the nuclear industry and other industries. Each report has become a model of academic research.

Thus, the conference completed all its tasks. The foundation was laid for the work on the Tankprom Museum project, and many ideas came together that would later need to be implemented.

According to the results of the conference, it was decided that the theme of the event formulated by the organizing committee is relevant and is of great interest for further work. The organizers of the conference need to create a permanent group on the study and museum embodiment of the history of the domestic tank industry. And for discussion and public presentation of the results of the work, it is necessary to hold regular scientific meetings, conferences and seminars at intervals of one and a half to two years.


The second event for the implementation of the project “Tankprom Museum” will be the exhibition and conference in Moscow in 2014 year. The main feature of the exhibition will be a completely new presentation of the material, the exhibition. Its working title is “Unknown Tankprom”, that is, the industry’s contribution to the national economy and human life. So Tankprom, no one has ever shown his civilian face. Naturally, attention is supposed to be paid not only to the glorious past, but also to the current state of the industry, that is, the activities of enterprises within the structure of the Uralvagonzavod research and production corporation.

The exhibition, as conceived by the organizers, will consist of five parts and an introductory section that will present the history of domestic tank building in models.

The first section is “Tankprom and Transport Revolution”, which will reflect the industry’s contribution to the re-equipment of rail transport in 30 – 70-s, as well as the modernity represented by UVZ, and the prospects for domestic railway construction and light rail. Sources of filling this part of the exhibition will be the collections of the exhibition complex Uralvagonzavod and the Central Museum of Railway Transport in St. Petersburg.

The second section - “Tankprom in the Earth's interior” - will tell about the role of the tank industry in equipping the USSR oil and mining industry. Then the exposition will turn to modern projects of the corporation for the production of equipment for the oil industry.

The third part, titled “City Tankprom”, will show the use and adaptation of tank structures for the needs of the national economy in 40 – 50's and, of course, a wide range of modern road-building and utility vehicles of the corporation. The section “Both the bread and the house begin with“ T ”will tell about the production of agricultural and industrial tractors in the USSR and the Russian Federation, about the Tankprom engine building school for the national economy. The sources for filling these two sections will be the funds of the museums of Uralvagonzavod and LLC CHTZ-Uraltrak.

Well, it is impossible not to reflect the role of Tankprom in space exploration, participation in the implementation of rocket and space programs of the USSR and modern Russia, international contacts of the UVZ corporation on space exploration. The exhibits are from museums of Uralvagonzavod, collections of Uralkriomash, Uraltransmash, KBTM, ChTZ-Uraltrak, VNIITransmash and UralNITI.

These sections of the exhibition will serve as the basis for the thematic complexes of the future Tankprom Museum.

So, the exhibition “Unknown Tankprom” in Moscow will be an important step towards the subsequent creation of a museum, which will be a natural addition to the museum network of Nizhny Tagil, a culminating project in the development of the tourist infrastructure of the city and in general industrial Russia. The project is also designed to bring together the invaluable experience and history of the industry, which will certainly help the development of a modern domestic defense industry. And it is not surprising that Uralvagonzavod Research and Production Corporation, one of the largest armored complexes in the world, is the main initiator of the project.
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  1. tundra
    tundra 27 February 2014 16: 10
    Tagil rules, and in Tagil Lining rules!
  2. Takashi
    Takashi 28 February 2014 13: 23
    Give the slogan: Each to the tank!
  3. Peacemaker
    Peacemaker 28 February 2014 13: 33
    "Unknown Tankprom" "Today the structure of the Soviet Tankprom is no longer a state secret" "The main object of study and museumification is the system of the domestic tank industry" what is this? "Tankprom and the transport revolution" "Tankprom in the bowels of the earth" - "City Tankprom" "Both bread and a house begin with" T "- This is where the association with the" peaceful Soviet tractor "gets in the way, especially since the" T "begins and peace and home: D
  4. smart ass
    smart ass 28 February 2014 14: 16
    In Tagil, the GMM rules, because the air is cleaner))) but in general I will be glad if the museum appears, I'll be one of the first to come.