At the beginning of the 70-ies, under the leadership of Arkadiy G. Shipunov, a branch №4 was formed, which was engaged in the development of anti-aircraft systems. The work of this department resulted in the creation of the Tunguska anti-aircraft cannon-missile system for the ground forces, the Kashtan ship complex and the Pantsyr anti-aircraft missile-cannon complex, which today is the hallmark of the enterprise.
In an exclusive interview to rostec.ru, the chief designer on anti-aircraft topics of the Tula Instrument Design Bureau, a disciple of Arkady G. Shipunov, Valery Slugin told about the secret of the success of the KBP, how the country's leading defense enterprise managed to survive the 90s as well as about the advantages of its developments.
WHEN DID YOU COME TO KBP?
I came to the instrument design bureau in 1971 to protect my diploma. I studied at the Tula Polytechnic Institute on a specialty with a beautiful name “electrical equipment of aircraft”.
Before getting into the thematic unit, I had to go through all the steps, and this is very correct. About five years he worked in the branch, where they directly create drawings, draw diagrams, produce electronic components. I was just working on electronic blocks. The first head of the division was the famous designer Rudolf Yanovich Purtsen.
Rudolf Yanovich Purtzen (1920-1997) - designer, one of the creators of the twin anti-aircraft gun ZU-23 and 14,5-mm anti-aircraft mining and pack installation, participated in the development of an easy installation for the Utes machine gun, anti-tank missile systems Konkurs and Fagot ", anti-aircraft missile and cannon complex" Tunguska ".
As a matter of fact, I came to him practically at the state tests of the Konkurs anti-tank missile system. Later he took part in the development and testing of the components and the complex itself. I had to work a lot with Vasily Petrovich Tikhonov, who was the chief designer of the “Competition” projectile, who later suggested that I go to him to work on a new projectile.
The "Competition" complex is adapted for landing on parachute platforms. When the water obstacles are overcome, shooting is provided afloat. The complex consists of a combat vehicle with a raised launcher placed on it for five missiles. In 1974, the "Competition" was adopted. The car took part in the parade on Red Square. “She was the first technician,” noted Slugin proudly.
At that time, within the framework of the 4 division, a thematic section was formed under the “maritime affairs”, in particular under “Chestnut” (export version “Chestnut”). And Arkady G. Shipunov supported the proposal of Rudolf Yanovich Purtsen to leave me in the fourth division and transfer to anti-aircraft topics. So I got on the topic "Dirk" (shipboard anti-aircraft missile and artillery complex). The project started from scratch. As the designers say, on the first axial line, which meant starting work from the moment the first axial line was drawn on paper, from which the creation of the part begins.
There was no experience of working at sea. Then I had to ride the shipbuilders, since the development was tied directly to the ships.
WHAT HAS BEEN SERVED WITH THE INJECTION FOR THE CREATION OF THE CHESTNUT COMPLEX?
Events on the Falkland Islands became the impetus for the creation of the Kashtan ZPRK, when cruise missiles were launched against the ships flying extremely low over water - the Argentines sank the Exeset missile with the British destroyer Sheffield. The task was to create a technique capable of hitting low-flying targets.
Before starting work on Kashtan, KBP, together with the Kharkov Institute, investigated the accuracy of target tracking in the millimeter range.
Here, Shipunov’s foresight played a role, at the initiative of which we independently investigated the question of the shape of the locator. However, all our developments had to be given to a third-party enterprise, since the location was not part of our direct scope.
But, nevertheless, the result of joint efforts was the creation of a radar system operating in the millimeter range. This is one of the features of our complex. Such waves are preferable when tracking a target over the sea. In the "Tunguska" this was not. By the way, from Tunguska only the rocket was borrowed and refined. Unlike "Tunguska", which worked on targets only in clear weather, "Kashtan" was created as an all-weather complex. For the first time, a clean machine was made - the complex can operate without human intervention both in the optical mode and in the radar mode.
All other elements of "Chestnut" - a rocket, a launcher, an optical system, cannon armament - were developed in the KBP.
While working on Kashtan, we received an important experience of interaction with subcontractors, which proved to be extremely valuable in the future. Work in such a complex cooperation required a jewelery approach so that no link was weak, so that all work, including subcontractors, would meet the necessary characteristics and be completed on time.
The chief designer of the complex was Arkady G. Shipunov. He had such a property - he never took on trust what was being asked, even if it was a question of the Ministry of Defense. He himself analyzed what type of weapon is needed in a particular direction, and how it will be developed. Will there be further demand for serial products, will serial products produce these products, will they be profitable.
But I must say what was missing. We did the development and gave it to another factory. This, of course, was completely wrong. The CB did not receive any dividends from this.
IN THE 90-YEARS AFTER THE DECISION OF THE SOVIET SYSTEM DECLINED, MANY KB STOPPED OUT OF EXISTENCE. FOR WHAT HAS THE SURVIVAL OF KBP?
KBP survived due to its versatility. Then we had about 5 directions, in each of which a number of works were carried out, in each direction there were high achievements.
A.G. Shipunov: “In order to create, a person must be free, he should not be impeded from work, he should not think about his daily bread. And the erection of all kinds of barriers, the narrow specialization of enterprises, what was under the Soviet power, led to serious losses not only of new strategic developments, but also of elite personnel potential. ”
In addition, when the state ceased to take care of the designers, A.G. Shipunov before others realized that they needed to make products and sell them independently, including abroad.
A.G. Shipunov: “In 90's, we chose our fate. Of course, it would be possible to do otherwise, determining the path of the one who asks for mercy, which would not lead to success in market conditions. Therefore, a concept was developed in KBP. This is a triad. The first is science, as the generating power of new ideas and technology that will be in demand. The second is the production of this technology, for which Shcheglovsky Val JSC was established and the main production facilities of the KBP were expanded. The third is the implementation. ”
The transition to mass production of products, which was organized by Shipunov, was a very important moment. We started with a rifle weapons for the Interior Ministry, of course, in cooperation.
The second important task at that stage was the need to earn. Then an analysis of competitive markets was made, which showed that our products are quite competitive. In this regard, the state has met us halfway - some enterprises have been given the right of foreign economic activity in the arms market. And this was the next stage in the development of the enterprise. Consistently "fired" all directions - and the ATGM, projectiles from cannons, anti-aircraft guns, and almost all gun and cannon weapons. We entered the markets of India, China, the Middle East, and some western countries. In particular, the West was interested in "Krasnopol", and having failed to create a worthy analogue.
The Chestnut complex, for example, is exported to India and China. The specificity of marine complexes lies in the fact that the need for them is determined by the number of ships on which they are installed. Ships build large countries. In addition, the ships built is not so much, all was done about forty pieces. For example, eight Russian combat modules are installed on our Russian aircraft carrier. If we are talking about a cruiser, then these are 4-6 modules. Compensation is due to the price. The price of offshore complexes is higher than two times ground-based, due to more complex maintenance and maintenance. For example, the marine version of the Pantsir-Pantsir-M, which we are actively working on, will be at least twice as high.
WHEN DID YOU GO TO THE DRY THEME?
I switched to the land subject after the Chestnut state tests, on which I had the opportunity to do an extreme start.
The appointment as head of the department was decided when I completed work on Kashtan. Since January, 1987, we have become engaged in land technology. We had "Tunguska-M2", then there was an air-defense system for paratroopers, but, unfortunately, these topics did not go. When funding fell sharply, these topics were closed. But we wouldn't pull them anyway, because these cars were assigned to us on tracked chassis. And this was the eternal dispute between the "chassist" and those who make weapons, who are more important. The chassis is quite expensive. And we did not begin to finance this work at our own expense.
Then Shipunov did not give priority to the “Tunguske-M2,” because he believed that there would be no global wars and, above all, mobile troops and landing forces would develop. And the new complex was created just as an option, which is parachuted. Troops must be protected from the air, because the same helicopter can hit combat vehicles of landing, infantry, Tanks. Therefore, the presence of anti-aircraft means. Shipunov clearly understood this. However, unfortunately, the development turned out to be unclaimed.
WHEN DOES THE PANCIERE START WORK?
The idea of creating the Pantsir complex came along with an awareness of the need to protect the most important objects on earth. Today, wars are contactless. ... Take the same Libya, Yugoslavia ... According to our information, tomahawks 100-120 was sent to Libya.
Then this idea was only born, and now they came to the conclusion that the order of the 250-300 "tomahawks" released in a minimum time with a large range from somewhere in the Atlantic can go 2,5 thousands of kilometers independently.
Now there is an active development of air attack. Tomahawks are already becoming obsolete. They are replaced by hypersonic aircraft, which rise higher and the air does not interfere. The speeds are ten times higher than those of the same “tomahawks” - a “tomahawk” slug of the order of 250 meters per second, while with hypersound it is already a speed of the order of 1500 meters per second.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF THE PANCIER?
"Shell" is developing ahead of the means of developing air attack. Now we are working on the next generation of “Armor”, which takes into account various means of air attack.
We have connection in three types: radio communication, optical fiber, wires. The complex has protection from radar. The complex is bearing, so you need to work in such modes to significantly complicate the direction finding and to deceive the enemy. The most important thing is that we have a millimeter range, on which the self-guided projectiles have not yet been developed, they are only being developed. This range is very difficult to fight. It is impossible to put a hindrance to him.
"Shell" can be used alone, but it is better when it comes to the division. Each machine can work on four targets simultaneously, respectively, if we are talking about four machines, it means that it is already possible to hit 16 targets. On the basis of the Pantsir, it is possible in general to build the entire air defense system of a small country without attracting large funds.
Another highlight of the "shell" - a rocket.
Since the time of “Tunguska” (80 — s), the concept of developing anti-aircraft weapons in the near zone has changed. Many thought that it would be more logical to create a “smart” rocket, which itself would find the target and shoot it down. We went the other way. We removed all the excess from the rocket, making it as simple and fast as possible. The head of guidance is not on the rocket itself, but on the ground, where you can come up with more complex algorithms. As a result, we got a very inexpensive ammunition. This is a fundamentally important point, given the way in which air attack weapons are developing. Their cost decreases. For example, the same drone can also fly up and drop something or take a picture, remove information. And what about the "tomahawk"? All this must be shot down, and what to shoot down? C-300 or C-400? What is their price?
Another advantage of the "shell" - mobility. Need to Kamchatka, flew to Kamchatka.
IN WHAT DIRECTIONS IS THE MODERNIZATION OF THE "PANZIRA" GOING?
The directions are the same: an increase in the speeds of achieving the goals, respectively, you need to respond to the speeds of the rocket, including, you need to see the target further, otherwise you will not have time to shoot. It is necessary to maintain and even increase accuracy. And you need to still manage not to get out of its price niche and mass-dimensional characteristics.
Recently, we began to make control points in the event that the case in point is the Panzer Group.
In KBP never before did points of management. It was my initiative. And the development turned out to be in demand in the market, including the foreign one.
The control point may be located at a distance of 20 km.
In addition, each individual machine can, although limited, perform the functions of a control center.
OVER THAN YOU WORK NOW?
We went in such a way that the element of the chassis did not bind us.
Now "Pantsir" is minimally integrated with the truck. For example, in the Emirates we deliver a complex on the MAN chassis.
We are promoting our chassis to the market. In this regard, we have a dream - we with KAMAZ make the chassis no worse than manovsky, which implies greater integration into this chassis. We place people in the cabin so as not to make a special compartment for them, so as not to create excess mass. We hope that KAMAZ will develop such a chassis, and we will sell the complex on our domestic chassis both domestically and abroad.
Now KBP is working on the creation of the “Armor” of a new generation.
DOES ANALOGUES EXIST "PANZIRA" ABROAD?
There are no similar developments in the world! There are good designs. French "Crotal", for example. But they did not develop it further. The French immediately focused on homing heads - “Aster-15 / 30” and entered a different price category. There is an Israeli tactical missile defense system "Iron Dome", but he, too, with a homing head. Although they show quite reasonable prices, but I do not believe, I think that they are much higher.
WHO DO YOU BELIEVE YOUR COMPETITOR?
I consider my competitor the American Patriot air defense system. Excellent system, but it has a different range. From domestic complexes - "Buk". This is a well-connected system, but the performance is on tracks and there is no grace.
AT WHAT TIME OF THE SERVICE IS THE “PANCIER” CALCULATED?
"Shell" should serve 25 years. Naturally with certain restorative repairs.
HOW DOES THE MAINTENANCE OF THE EXPORTED PANTIARS ARE CARRYING OUT?
This is a very serious question. It's about the whole industry.
We supply a lot of parts. But we deliver them on 4-5 years. During this period, the complex can be in combat readiness using our spare parts. Now, if some unit has failed, it has been changed. And if in the block any one microcircuit failed? Send for repair in Russia is very expensive and impractical. Something like this is being done now. Of course, you need a service center. In Russia, you need to send only what can not be fixed on the spot.
The creation of service centers is planned, but the process is very shy. And it hits hard on military-technical cooperation.
WHAT ROLE IN YOUR DESTINY AGAINED SHGPUNOV PLAYED?
I happened to work with a man of genius, to do something together. We consulted with A.G. Shipunov until very recently. In any circumstances, the connection was not lost, he always helped with advice. I consider Arkady Shipunov my teacher.
WHAT HAPPENED AND MOTIVATED YOU?
The most vivid impressions are connected with professional activity - when you see a flash and a drop in a target.
"PANTSIR-C1" is a universal anti-aircraft complex for all branches of the armed forces, providing protection of defense objects from all types of modern and perspective air attack means - high-precision weapons and aviation at a distance of up to 20 km and in the entire range of heights of their application. “Shell” has a special role in protecting the Olympic facilities and the Arctic borders of the country. "Shell" is on a par with promising examples of highly intelligent weapons of modern times.
TULA Instrument Design Bureau - one of the leading design enterprises of the defense industry. Since 2008, it has been part of the Rostec holding company “High-precision complexes”. Specialists of the design office have developed and serially produce more than 150 copies of military equipment. KBP possesses a powerful scientific and production potential in the field of creating systems of modern precision weapons.