In November last year, the Concern "Radioelectronic Technologies" (KRET) reported on the implementation of the state defense order for electronic warfare machines (EW) 1Л262 "Mercury-BM". Until the end of autumn, the concern built and handed over to the military 10 machines of the new model, which were soon distributed among EW units of the armed forces. A few months later, in May, 2014, in the Tambov region, an electronic warfare troops exercise took place, in which, apparently, the technique of the new model was used for the first time. In addition, during these exercises, one of the machines “Mercury-BM” first appeared not in the official photo and video materials of the manufacturer.
18 may NTV channel in the program “Today. The final issue "showed a report on the teachings of the EW troops, which demonstrated various models of equipment delivered in recent years. Among other cars, an EW Mercury-BM machine hit the frame for the first time. The newest machine, leaving behind a cloud of dust, effectively drove past the camera several times. Such a demonstration was the first time that “Mercury-BM” hit the lens of journalists and was shown to the general public not in official promotional materials. It should be noted that for some reason this report went almost unnoticed in May. About the first fact of the demonstration of new technology on television remembered only at the end of July.
From last year's KRET report, it follows that the number of Mercury-BM vehicles in the Russian armed forces is still small. It is known about the transfer of the first batch of ten cars. In addition, another prototype machine could have been transferred to the troops a year earlier, but this is not confirmed. In the future, the mass production of new technology will continue. Every year, electronic warfare troops will receive several new cars. Probably, production rates will not exceed 10-12 machines per year.
The 1L262 “Mercury-BM” complex (alternative designation SPR-2М) is a self-propelled electronic warfare system based on the MT-LBu tracked chassis. The main purpose of the electronic equipment installed on the tracked vehicle is to counter the enemy’s guided weapons, as well as ammunition equipped with radio-fuses. Mercury-BM is a further development of the Mercury-B 1L29 complex, created in the eighties. The development of both machines of the family was carried out by the Gradient Scientific Research Institute. According to the available data, the mass production of 1L262 machines is carried out by several enterprises: the base chassis MT-LBu is supplied by the Muromteplovoz factory (the city of Murom), radioelectronic equipment is manufactured at the Kvant scientific and production association (Veliky Novgorod), and the final assembly is carried out by the Kazan optical mechanical plant.
The main task of 1Л262 machines is to protect the troops from enemy artillery fire using projectiles equipped with radio fuses. During operation, the equipment of the EW machine detects the enemy ammunition, determines the carrier frequency of its radio-fuse, and then puts the interference of the appropriate frequency and high power. As a result of such exposure, the enemy’s radio fuse will either explode the ammunition at a relatively safe height, or will be shut off and the projectile will be blown up using a contact fuse. In both cases, the threats to covered troops are seriously reduced.
The electronics of the Mercury-BM complex operates in automatic mode and is capable of performing all necessary operations in automatic mode. According to reports, to interfere with the machine takes no more than a few fractions of a second. The frequency of the radio-fuse is determined to within a few hundred hertz. The determination of the carrier frequency of a radio-fuse takes no more than several tens of microseconds. Interference is emitted within a few milliseconds intermittently, making it possible to create an almost continuous signal that provides the proper effect on the radio fuse.
At the same time, the 1Л262 complex is capable of suppressing up to six radio channels with the likelihood of neutralizing a radio-fuse to 0,8. At the same time the possibility of continuous work within six hours is provided. The deployment of the complex takes no more than 10 minutes. During operation, the EW machine "Mercury-BM" can protect troops in the area from 20 to 50 ha.
The equipment of the “Mercury-BM” complex is installed on the MT-LBu tracked chassis. Most of the electronic equipment is located inside the armored hull. Outside it is a telescopic mast with a set of antennas. Thanks to the use of new equipment built on modern element base, it was possible to halve the crew of the car in comparison with the previous machine “Mercury-B”. The EW 1Л262 is serviced by two people (driver and systems operator).
According to the Radio Electronic Technologies Concern, the need of the Russian armed forces for the Mercury-BM complexes is estimated at least in 100 machines. In addition, the complex has a good potential in the international market of weapons and military equipment. At the moment, in the REB troops there are at least ten 1Л262 machines, as well as a number of older vehicles of the similar purpose, model 1Л29 "Mercury-B". In the foreseeable future, contracts should be signed for the supply of new Mercury-BM machines.
On the materials of the sites:
Machine EW 1L262 "Mercury-BM"
- Ryabov Kirill