TechChallenger 2 tanks face muddy terrain challenges in Ukraine

Challenger 2 tanks face muddy terrain challenges in Ukraine

Challenger 2 in Ukraine
Challenger 2 in Ukraine
Images source: © X, @TheDeadDistrict
11:12 AM EDT, March 12, 2024

The report states, "The biggest problem for the Challenger 2 in Ukraine is getting stuck in the mud." A British journalist observes that while the Ukrainian forces generally laud the tanks, they struggle with the country's demanding terrain. The soft, deep soil of Ukraine, exacerbated by reports, creates substantial obstacles in the conflict.

A video circulating in the media demonstrates a British tank sinking into a deep puddle. As the water level rises, it threatens to overrun the tank's chassis, making "extracting the machine from such a predicament a formidable challenge," for the crew.

The frequent "engulfment" of British tanks by Ukrainian soil is attributed to the soil's high organic matter content, which can reach up to 15 percent. Consequently, the soil's capacity to retain a significant amount of water after rainfall turns the terrain into a quagmire that can immobilize tanks. Even the tanks' wide tracks, designed to navigate sandy and similar terrains, prove inadequate.

Challenger 2 in Ukraine

It is worth noting that the British tanks have been previously praised by the commander of a Ukrainian airborne assault brigade, who hailed it as "a tank unique in its kind." He highlighted "the ease of operation, exceptional optics, stabilization, convenient control, and the high level of crew protection." Such positive feedback from Ukrainians about the Challenger 2 is not uncommon.

The Challenger 2 boasts multi-layered Chobham/Dorchester armor, which proved its effectiveness during the Persian Gulf War. Furthermore, the tank is equipped with an NBC (nuclear, biological, and chemical) protection system.

Regarding armament, the 120 mm caliber L30A1 cannon stands out. This rifled barrel feature sets it apart from the smoothbore barrels used by other NATO countries. Additionally, two 7.62 mm machine guns support the main cannon for engaging lightly armored targets and infantry.

At over 66 tons, the Challenger 2's substantial weight is primarily due to its extensive armor. The tank measures over 37.73 feet in length, and its 1200 HP power unit enables a maximum speed of approximately 34.18 mph. Although it is less agile and generally slower than its Western counterparts, the Ukrainian forces appreciate the tank's compensatory advantages.

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