Russian armor vs RPG-29
- At some point someone questioned how Chechens were able to disable
Russian tanks. Assuming this data is real, RPG-29 is anomalously
effective against even the T-90 .
20.10.1999 T-80U and T-90 Protection Trials
On October 20, 1999 extensive trials of T-80U and T-90 protection
from various types of threats were conducted at TsNIIO 643a Testing
Grounds. The tests involved firing large amounts of ordnance
(including several versions of RPG ATGL, light and heavy ATGMs, and
APFSDS rounds) at frontal projections of T-80U and T-90 MBTs both
protected with Kontakt-V ERA and stripped of it.
T-80U and T-90 MBTs were represented by 3 vehicles each, one with
Kontakt-V ERA, one with removed explosive packages and one reserve
vehicle. For the ERA part of trials, knocked-out ERA packages were
replaced after each shot.
One more T-80U MBT was used for special trials that focused on
testing of Shtora-1 EOCMDAS.
The following weapons were used:
Infantry ATGLs (fired at a distance of 40m)
RPG-7 (using advanced 105mm grenade PG-7VR with a tandem warhead,
pen. 650mm RHA)
RPG-26 (disposable launcher, pen. >500mm RHA)
RPG-29 (advanced 105mm launcher, pen. 750mm RHA)
ATGMs (fired at a distance of 600m)
Malyutka-2 (pen. >600mm RHA)
Metis (pen. 460mm RHA)
Konkurs (pen. 650mm RHA)
Kornet (pen. >850mm RHA)
APFSDS (fired from T-80U MBT at a distance of 1,500m, the most likely
round is 3BM42)
Each weapon was fired 5 times at each target, for a total of 20 shots
per weapon. The total number of shots fired during the trials thus
The trials yielded the following outcome:
T-90: RPG-29 produced a total of 3 penetrations.
No other RPG rounds could penetrate even the stripped target.
T-80U: RPG-29 penetrated 3 times with ERA, all 5 times without ERA.
Of all other grenades, one PG-7VR penetrated the stripped target.
T-90: No ATGMs could penetrate the ERA-equipped target. One Kornet
ATGM penetrated the stripped target.
T-80U: 2 Kornet ATGMs penetrated the ERA-equipped target, all 5
penetrated the stripped target.
No other ATGMs could penetrate.
T-90: ERA-equipped target could not be penetrated. Furthermore, after
firing the crew entered the vehicle, activated it and was able to
execute the firing sequence.
Without ERA, one round penetrated.
T-80U (data available only for stripped target): One round almost
penetrated (3mm hole in the inner lining, no visible equipment
damage); two penetrated to 1/2 thickness; one missed the target
completely; one hit the gun.
The following pictures show the locations of impacts by ATGL RPG-29
(in red) and ATGM Kornet (in black) against ERA-equipped vehicles.
Which of these hits penetrated was not disclosed.
10 Kornet ATGMs with removed warheads were fired at a tank with a
crew. 4 ATGMs hit the tank, the other 6 deviated to the left of the
target in the middle of the flight.
RPG-29 proved to be by far the most potent weapon among those used.
As powerful as heavy ATGM Kornet, it appeared to assure the frontal
penetration of T-80U even for the squad-level firepower. Even though
T-90 fared better, it is still not immune to it. Considering
sufficient proliferation of this weapon and the fact that this is
still a fairly light infantry weapon, it is the most dangerous
adversary of modern Russian MBTs, and is a very disturbing
Original reports that ATGM Kornet performance is severely degraded by
ERA due to its peculiar order of internal components proved true as
the ATGM with at least 100mm higher penetrating potential was not
superior to a much lighter RPG-29.
Report of Shtora-1 EOCMDAS trials is confusing. Being laser-guided,
ATGM Kornet should not suffer any interference from Shtora as it only
affects IR SACLOS ATGMs. Furthermore, ATGMs can only deviate to the
left if the marker is set to the left of both emitters, which is
hardly likely. It is probable, however unlikely, that it was caused
by a sloppy work of removal the warhead which e.g. could cause a gyro
- Oh, sorry about that. It came from the Chechnya Mujahideen.
> Source of this information?
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- --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, ACARLG@A... wrote:
> Source of this information?
From what I heard here and there the tests were intended to determine
vehicle's vulnerabilities prior to second invasion. One idea to
explain these results was that RPG-29 allegedly has a tungsten shaped-
charge liner as opposed to usual copper. The pix show penetrations on
frontal armor and not the usual weak spots.
For detailed armor info see Intnl Journal of Impact Engineering.