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T-72B4

Main battle tank

T-72B4 tank

The T-72B4 is a low-cost upgrade for the ageing T-72B tanks

 
 
Country of origin Russia
Entered service ?
Crew 3 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight ~ 45 t
Length (gun forward) 9.53 m
Hull length 6.86 m
Width 3.46 m
Height ~ 2.4 m
Armament
Main gun 125 mm smoothbore
ATGW 9M119 Svir or 9M119M Refleks
Machine guns 1 x 7.62 mm, 1 x 12.7 mm
Elevation range - 5 to + 14 degrees
Traverse range 360 degrees
Ammunition load
Main gun 45 rounds
Machine guns 2 000 x 7.62 mm, 300 x 12.7 mm
Mobility
Engine V-92S2F diesel
Engine power 1 130 hp
Maximum road speed ~ 70 km/h
Range ~ 500 km/h
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 40%
Vertical step 0.85 m
Trench 2.8 m
Fording 1.2 m
Fording (with preparation) 5 m

 

   The T-72B3M, or T-72B4 is a recent Russian upgrade of the ageing T-72B tank. It is a further development of the T-72B3 with some improvements. It has a new gun, improved fire control system with panoramic commander's sight, improved protection and new engine. Russia is gradually refurbishing and upgrading a number of its ageing T-72B tanks to keep them operational and up to date. The T-72B4 can be seen as a low-cost upgrade of the older T-72B tank. However despite all updates and improvements the T-72B4 is no match for modern Main Battle Tanks (MBTs).

   Early production versions of the T-72B3M/T-72B4 had older Kontakt-5 built-in explosive reactive armor. It has been reported that this tank will be fitted with a built-in Relikt explosive reactive armor of 3-rd generation. Such armor if present on the T-90MS demonstrator.

   This tank has a new 2A46M5 125 mm smoothbore gun. Autoloader of this tank has some modifications and can use newly-developed munitions. This tank can launch 9M119 Svir or 9M119M Refleks anti-tank guided missiles in the same manner as ordinary projectiles. Western reporting name for both missiles is AT-11 Sniper. A total of 45 rounds are carried, 22 rounds are stored in the autoloader and ready to use, while remaining are stored inside the hull.

   There is a coaxial 7.62 mm machine gun, as well as a 12.7 mm roof-mounted machine gun. The last mentioned is manually controlled by the vehicle commander.

   The T-72B4 has got an improved fire control system over the previous T-72B3. It is fitted with new panoramic sight with thermal vision, which gives it a hunter-killer engagement capability. Tank commander uses a panoramic sight with thermal vision to search for targets. Once the target is selected the gun is laid on the target automatically and the gunner completes al the aiming and firing process. During that time commander looks for the next target. Such engagement method is present on all modern MBTs. The fire control system comes with a ballistic computer. Gunner uses Sosna-U sight with thermal imager. The T-72B4 has got day/night and all weather combat capability. The tank is also fitted with a digital radio system. So in terms of fire control system and electronics, the T-72B4 outperforms the T-90 tank, used by the Russian Army.

   This MBT is operated by a crew of three, including commander, gunner and driver.

   This tank is powered by the V-92S2F diesel, developing 1 130 hp. This engine was also fitted on some refurbished and upgraded T-72B3 tanks. It replaced the original 840 hp engine. As a result the T-72B4 is faster than its predecessor. This tank also comes with new tracks. With preparation this MBT can ford water obstacles up to 5 m deep. This deep wading feature is present on all Soviet/Russian MBTs. The T-72B4 also has a built-in blade for self-entrenching. The tank can prepare itself defensive entrenchment within 12-40 minutes, depending on the ground type.

 

 
T-72B4 tank

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T-72B4 tank

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T-72B4 tank

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T-72B4 tank

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T-72B4 tank

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Personal appeal from Andrius Genys

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