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PT-76

Amphibious light tank

PT-76 tank

The PT-76 light amphibious tank was designed as a reconnaissance vehicle

 
 
Country of origin Soviet Union
Entered service 1951
Crew 3 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight 14.2 t
Length (gun forward) 7.63 m
Hull length 6.91 m
Width 3.14 m
Height 2.33 m
Armament
Main gun 76 mm
Machine guns 1 x 7.62 mm
Elevation range - 4 to + 30 degrees
Traverse range 360 degrees
Ammunition load
Main gun 40 rounds
Machine guns 1 000 x 7.62 mm
Mobility
Engine V-6B diesel
Engine power 240 hp
Maximum road speed 44 km/h
Amphibious speed on water 10 km/h
Range 370 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 70%
Side slope 35%
Vertical step 1.1 m
Trench 2.8 m
Fording Amphibious

 

   The PT-76 amphibious light tank entered service with Soviet Army in 1951. It was designed as a reconnaissance vehicle. Production continued until the late 1960s and around 12 000 of these tanks were built. Around 10 000 were used by the Soviet military, while around 2 000 were exported to Soviet allies. By 1995 Russian military had only 200 of these tanks in service. Naval Infantry units operated last 30 of these tanks until 2015, when the type was completely retired from the Russian service. Despite its age this light tank is still in service with at least 25 countries. However the numbers are reducing.

   The PT-76 has an ideal design for amphibious capability, but both has a number of limitations as a fighting vehicle. Its amphibious design with a boat-like hull and limitations in weight allowed less armor protection. Thin tank's hull is vulnerable to 12.7 mm machine guns and artillery fragments. Later production vehicles were fitted with an automatic fire suppression and NBC protection systems.

   This light tank is armed with a 76 mm gun. It has a maximum effective range of 1.5 km and rate of fire of 7 rounds per minute. By modern standards this gun is considered light, but is still capable of penetrating APCs and other light armored vehicles. A total of 40 rounds are carried for the main gun.

   Secondary armament consists of coaxial 7.62 mm machine gun. Some tanks were fitted with a 12.7 mm anti-aircraft machine gun on top of the roof.

   Vehicle has a crew of three, including commander, loader and driver.

   The PT-76 is powered by a V-6B diesel engine, developing 240 horsepower. Vehicle is fully amphibious without additional preparation. It is propelled on water by two waterjets. Auxiliary fuel tanks can be installed for longer operational range.

 

Variants

 

   PT-76 Model 1 with a D-56T gun;

   PT-76 Model 2 with a D-56TM gun;

   PT-76 Model 3 with a D-56TM gun;

   PT-76B, fitted with new fully-stabilized D-56TS gun, improved observation and communication equipment. In 1959 this variant replaced in production the original PT-76;

   PT-76M, featured improved seaworthiness and was intended for naval infantry units. However this light tank was not accepted to service and Soviet naval infantry were armed with the PT-76B;

   Polish PT-76 variant features a separate commander's hatch and a 12.7 mm anti-aircraft machine gun;

   Type 63, variant of the PT-76 produced in China. It has a new turret with a more powerful 85 mm gun;

   M1985 is a North Korean amphibious light tank. In concept it is similar to the PT-76, but has a number of features of the Chinese Type 63. It is armed with a 85 mm main gun.

   BTR-50P armored personnel carrier;

   ZSU-23-4 Shilka self-propelled anti-aircraft gun;

   ASU-85 airborne assault gun;

   FROG-2 and FROG-5 missile launching vehicles;

   SA-6 Gainful surface-to-air missile system. Vehicle chassis is similar to that of the PT-76.

 

 
PT-76 tank

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PT-76 tank

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PT-76 tank

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PT-76 tank

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PT-76 tank

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