TechBoosting the front line. How Ukrainian-made 2S22 Bohdana howitzers are changing the balance in the war

Boosting the front line. How Ukrainian-made 2S22 Bohdana howitzers are changing the balance in the war

2S22 Bohdana on the front in Ukraine
2S22 Bohdana on the front in Ukraine
Images source: © 1. Special Purpose Brigade

5:24 PM EST, December 13, 2023

The first prototype of the 2S22 Bohdana saw the light of day in 2018. Initially perceived as a sort of experiment, the howitzer gained global recognition following its successful role in the liberation of Snake Island. In response, the decision to mass-produce it was swiftly reached in Kyiv, leading to a steadily increasing production rate.

According to information from the Ukrainian Pravda service, there are currently six 2S22 Bohdana units being produced monthly. Thus far, a total of 30 howitzers have made their way to the front. Despite their frequent use against Russian forces, none have been destroyed by the enemy. Even the first prototype, constructed on a KrAZ truck chassis, reportedly remains operational.

Ukrainian designers consistently work on improving this design. The latest versions are mounted on a Czech Tatra T815 truck chassis with an 8x8 drive and feature an automated ammunition loading mechanism, significantly enhancing their rate of fire.

Ukrainian Pravda shared that approximately 25 companies with about 400 specialists are involved in the production of the 2S22 Bohdana. Some crucial components are produced overseas, and different production stages have been distributed across Ukraine to circumvent Russian long-range weapon attacks.

The Defense Express service notes that the large number of people involved in production implies potential future increases in manufacturing this first Ukrainian 155mm caliber artillery system. This kind of ammunition is a standard issue for most NATO artillery weapons today.

A key benefit of the 2S22 Bohdana production is its cost-effectiveness. Defense Express reports that it is considerably cheaper than the French CAESAR, regarded as one of the most economically priced mobile howitzers currently available.

The main issue related to the production of the 2S22 Bohdana reportedly lies in the limited capabilities of the Czech company, Tatra, that provides the chassis. As such, it appears unlikely that the Tatra T815 currently in use will be the sole, primary chassis for the Ukrainian howitzer. Alternatives are currently under consideration, including a potential additional, towed version of the 2S22 Bohdana.

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