TechModern Russian T-72B3 tanks spotted in intense battles in Avdiivka

Modern Russian T‑72B3 tanks spotted in intense battles in Avdiivka

Russian tank T-72B3 after field modifications.
Russian tank T-72B3 after field modifications.
Images source: © X (formerly Twitter) | JR2
8:49 PM EST, February 2, 2024, updated: 4:23 AM EST, March 7, 2024

The Russian T-72B3 tank featured in the video below is furnished with the typical "field upgrade package" usually affiliated with the Russians. This includes the well-known cage on the turret that aids against charges discharged from drones, added rod armor on the sides, and a feather-like camouflage with some branches attached, making it appear like the tank has been dusted with feathers.

The intended purpose of this makeshift addition was to provide cover comparable to camouflage nets or even the multispectral camouflages commonly seen on CV90 infantry combat vehicles. Such camouflage disrupts the object's outline in daylight and minimizes the object's thermal and radar signature where it's applied.

Regarding the Russian instance, it's evident that someone didn't meticulously cover the tank's components. This kind of camouflage could function during daytime but seems ineffective in the long run.

Russian T-72B3 tank - the most prevalently modern vehicle of the Russians

The T-72B3 tanks, in production since 2011, are now the predominant equipment in the Russian army. The vehicles are furnished with a state-of-the-art fire control system, the Sosna-U, which utilizes Catherine-FC thermal imaging cameras sourced from France.

Per the "The Military Balance 2021" report, the Russians possessed 1150 tanks of this model. However, it is likely that in 2022, this number will surpass 1200 units. It's noteworthy to mention that, based on data gathered by the Oryxspioenkop group, the Russians have reportedly lost at least 350 T-72B3 tanks.

The T-72B3 tank results from a cost-effective upgrade of T-72B tanks. This upgrade encompassed improvements in optoelectronics, the more precise 2A45M-5 cannon, and the adaptation of the autoloader for new anti-tank ammunition with a longer penetrator from the Swamp family. Minor modifications were also made to the electrical turret rotation system.

Despite these enhancements, most of the tank's components remained unaltered. Only the outdated Kontakt-1 reactive armor was substituted with a slightly less antiquated Kontakt-5 in earlier produced series. As a result, a vehicle was developed that, though outdated in its protection, can deliver firepower compared to the newer T-90Ms, and all these on a relatively small budget.

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