T-90S Main Battle Tank (MBT)
UralVagonZavod - Russia
The T-90S entered service with the Russian Army in 1992. In February 2001, the Indian Army signed a contract for 310 T-90S tanks: 124 were completed in Russia and the rest are being delivered in "knocked down" form for final assembly in India.
T-90S main battle tank orders and deliveriesThe first of these was delivered in January 2004. The locally assembled tanks are christened 'Bhishma'. The tanks are fitted with the Shtora self-protection system and Catherine thermal imagers from Thales of France and Peleng of Belarus. The first ten Bhishma tanks were inducted into the Indian Army in August 2009. India plans to induce 1,640 T-90 tanks by 2020.
In January 2005, it was announced that a further 91 T-90S tanks would be procured for the Russian Army, although this number was later reduced.
By November 2007, it has been estimated that the Russian Army has around 200 T-90 tanks. In August 2007, Thales was awarded a contract to supply 100 of these with the Catherine FC thermal imager. In March 2006, Algeria signed a contract for the supply of 180 T-90S tanks from Uralvagonzavod, to be delivered by 2011. Of the total, 102 tanks were in service with the Algerian Army by 2008.
In November 2006, India ordered a further 330 T-90 tanks, to be licence-built by heavy vehicle factory (HVF), Avadi, Tamil Nadu.
In January 2009, the Greek Cypriot Government approved the purchase of 41 T-90 tanks from Russia. In March 2010, however, the government changed its plans and opted for T-80 tanks against the T-90s. Saudi Arabia placed a $2bn order for helicopters and 150 T-90S MBTs in September 2009. In the same year, Turkmenistan ordered 10 T-90S tanks under a $30m contract.
T-90S armamentThe T-90S armament includes one 125mm 2A46M smoothbore gun, stabilised in two axes and fitted with a thermal sleeve. The gun tube can be replaced without dismantling inside the turret. The gun can fire a variety of ammunition including APDS (Armour Piercing Discarding Sabot), HEAT (high-explosive anti-tank), HE-FRAG (high-explosive fragmentation) as well as shrapnel projectiles with time fuses.
The T-90S gun can also fire the 9M119 Refleks (NATO designation AT-11 Sniper) anti-tank guided missile system. The range of the missile is 100m to 4,000m and takes 11.7 sec to reach maximum range. The system is intended to engage tanks fitted with ERA (explosive reactive armour) as well as low-flying air targets such as helicopters, at a range of up to 5km. The missile system fires either the 9M119 or 9M119M missiles which have semi-automatic laser beamriding guidance and a hollow charge warhead. Missile weight is 23.4kg. The guns automatic loader will feed both ordnance and missiles.
Also fitted is a coaxial 7.62mm PKT machine gun and a 12.7mm air defence machine gun. A 5.45mm AKS-74 assault rifle is carried on a storage rack.
Self protectionThe T-90 tank is protected by both conventional armour-plating and explosive reactive armour.
The T-90 is fitted with the Shtora-1 defensive aids suite which is produced by Electronintorg of Russia. This system includes infrared jammer, laser warning system with four laser warning receivers, grenade discharging system which produces an aerosol screen and a computerised control system.
It is also fitted with NBC (nuclear, biological and chemical) protection equipment.
Fire control and observationThe T-90S has the 1A4GT integrated fire control system (IFCS) which is automatic but with manual override for the commander. The IFCS contains the gunner's 1A43 day fire control system, gunner's TO1-KO1 thermal imaging sight which has a target identification range of 1.2km to 1.5km and commander's PNK-S sight.
The gunner's 1A43 day FCS comprises: 1G46 day sight / rangefinder with missile guidance channel, 2E42-4 armament stabiliser, 1V528 ballistic computer and DVE-BS wind gauge.
The commander's PNK-4S sight includes a TKN-4S (Agat-S) day / night sight which has identification ranges of 800m (day) and 700m (night).
The driver is equipped with a TVN-5 infrared night viewer.
PropulsionThe T-90S has a liquid-cooled V-84MS 618kW (840hp) four-stroke V-12 piston engine. This engine can be fuelled by T-2 or TS-1 kerosene and A-72 benzine, in addition to diesel. The tank can carry up to 1,600 litres of fuel in the main fuel tanks and fuel drums. The fuel tanks are reinforced with armour plating.
The tank is provided with a snorkel for deep fording and can ford 5m of water with equipment which can be deployed in 20 minutes.
The mechanical transmission includes primary reduction gear, two planetary final gearboxes and two planetary final drives. The running gear features torsion bar suspension with hydraulic shock absorbers at one, two and six road wheel stations and tracks with rubber-metallic pin hinges.
Weight 46.5 tonnes (45.8 LT; 51.3 ST)
Length 9.53 m (31 ft 3 in)
Width 3.78 m (12 ft 5 in)
Height 2.22 m (7 ft 3 in)
Unit cost $2.77 - 4.15 million USD in 2011
Although a development of the T-72, the T-90 uses a 125mm 2A46 smoothbore tank gun, 1G46 gunner sights, a new engine, and thermal sights. Standard protective measures include a blend of regular steel and Kontakt-5 explosive-reactive armor, laser warning receivers, Nakidka camouflage and the Shtora infrared ATGM jamming system. The EMT-7 electromagnetic pulse (EMP) creator is used in testing but not fitted to T-90s in active service. It is designed and built by Uralvagonzavod, in Nizhny Tagil, Russia.
• high reliability of all units and assemblies, as well as the tank as a whole
• formidable main gun and guided missiles
• up-to-date fire control system
• enhanced combat manoeuvrability
• enhanced survivability under attacks of HE and APDS projectiles
• optronic suppression system
• maximal similarity to the T- 72 MBT family providing ease and cost reduction of crew training
|Combat weight, t||46.5|
|Length with gun, mm:|
|Bore size, mm||125|
|Rate of fire, rounds/min||7|
|Ammunition allowance (including automatic loading gear)||42 (22)|
|Stabilizer, type||Electrohydraulic power elevation Electromechanical power traverse|
|Auxiliary armament: anti-aircraft machine gun mount|
|Bore size, mm||7.62|
|Ammunition allowance, pcs||2000|
|Auxiliary armament: machine gun|
|Bore size, mm||12.7|
|Ammunition allowance, pcs||300|
|Round of guided missile||ZUBK14 with missile 9M119 ZUBK20 with missile 9M119 M|
|Missile guidance system|
|Maximum range of fire, m||5000|
|Fire Control System|
|Commander’s sighting and vision system||T01-K04|
|Gunner’s range finder||1G46|
|Double control of the fire from the commander’s station||Available|
|Gunner’s night sight||Thermal Imager ESSA|
|Night identification range of tank side projection, m||4000|
|Armour guard, type||Combined turret from the rolled armour|
|Explosive reactive armour, type||Multipurpose|
|Opto-electronic suppression system||Available|
|NBC protection system||Crew protection|
|Mobility and Cross-Country Ability|
|Max highway speed, km/h||60|
|Fuel distance with barrels, km||550|
|Trench, m||2.6 ... 2.8|
|Obstacle ability, m||0.85|
|Engine type||B-92C2 (diesel)|
|Gross horsepower, kW (hp)||736 (1000)|
|Number of cylinders, pc||12|
|Cylinder arrangement||V-type, at 60°|
|Type||Mechanical, with transmission gear unit, two final gear boxes and coaxial final drives|
|Number of gears||Seven-forward and one-reverse|
|Stopping brake||Disk type. Oil operated|
|Drive control||Drive control|
|Shock absorbers, type||Hydraulic, vane-type (6pcs)|
|Number of road wheels and track support rollers per one side||6 road wheel 3 track support roller|
|Track||With stamped tracks and rubber-bushed gearing, adapted to accommodate rubber pads|
|Crew friendliness||The conditioner is available|
T-90: Original production model.
T-90K: Command version of the T-90.
T-90E: Export version of T-90 MBT.
T-90A: Russian army version with welded turret, V-92S2 engine and ESSA thermal viewer. Sometimes called T-90 Vladimir.
T-90S: Export version of T-90A. Sometimes called T-90C (Cyrillic letter es looks like a Latin c). Tanks are found with two different turret armour arrays.
T-90SK: Command version of the T-90S. It differs in radio and navigation equipment and Ainet remote-detonation system for HEF rounds.
T-90S "Bhishma": modified T-90S in Indian service.
T-90M: Prototype version featuring new explosive reactive armour (ERA) Relikt, new 1,250 PS (920 kW) engine, new improved turret and composite armor, new gun, new thermal imaging Catherine-FC from THALES, an enhanced environmental control system supplied by Israel’s Kinetics Ltd for providing cooled air to the fighting compartment, integrated tactical system, satellite navigation and others
Armor Steel-composite-reactive blend
vs APFSDS: 550 mm + 250-280mm with Kontakt-5 = 800-830mm; vs HEAT: 650 mm + 500-700mm with Kontakt-5 = 1,150-1,350mm+
Asian Defence News