Armor: December 1, 2000

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Ukraine has released details of the special T-84 tank armed with a 120mm cannon which it offered to Turkey earlier this year. While the standard T-84 (the Ukrainian version of the Russian T-80UD) has its ammunition in a carousel autoloader on the turret floor, the T-84-120 has the ammunition stored in the turret bustle behind armored bulkheads with blow-out panels on the roof. This is considerably less vulnerable to enemy attack than the carousel system that proved so combustible in Chechnya. The 120mm smoothbore cannon has a fume extractor. The autoloader has 22 rounds in the turret bustle; another 18 are stored in the hull. The tank has a 7.62mm coaxial machinegun and a 12.7mm machinegun on the turret roof. While the French negotiated to sell 120mm cannon to Ukraine, they insist that no weapons or technology were transferred. Ukraine says that their 120mm cannon fires all Western ammunition, and a 120mm version of the Russian 125mm laser-guided projectile. The T-84-120 includes a new all-welded turret, explosive reactive armor for the hull and turret fronts, a Shtora defense system, a 1,200hp diesel engine, a nuclear-chemical-biological protection system, an auxiliary power unit, GPS navigation, new driver controls, and a fire-detection/suppression system. Ukraine has also completed three T-72-120 prototypes with similar "western" cannon and equipment. These also have a new all-welded turret with 22 rounds stored in a bustle autoloader.--Stephen V Cole


 


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