The International Military-Technical Forum ARMY-2020 is organised by the Russian Ministry of Defence and proved to be the major exhibition event in Russia in the field of advanced technologies, armament, military equipment for the armed forces and security agencies. A team from the French Ministry of the Armed Forces visited the Forum and shared their report on the most outstanding exhibits.
Armoured Vehicles Area
In addition to the T-14 tank and the 8x8 Boomerang armoured vehicle, spearheads of new programs and a large number of new machines were presented.
The BMP-3M "Manul" tracked infantry fighting vehicle has an additional side armoru. This air transportable and amphibious vehicle is equipped with a powerfully armed remotely operated turret (30 mm 2A42 gun coupled to a 7.62 x 54 mm PKTM coaxial machine gun). Four Kornet anti-tank missiles complete this armament. The commanding officer and the gunner each have a complete optronic unit (daylight channel, thermal channel, laser range finding, fire control).
The MRAP Typhoon K 53949 is already in service with the Russian military. It resists an explosive charge of 6 kg ventral and its ballistic protection is level 3 at STANAG NATO (7.62 x 51 mm AP). Its 10 embarked soldiers benefit from numerous protective elements: anti-mine seats, multi-point belt, assault rifle attachment system. The vehicle can be armed with a circular or a remotely operated turret. Its sufficiently wide rear hatch makes access easy for equipped personnel.
The 4x4 armoured vehicle MZKT 490101 was presented by the Belarusian firm Volat Defense. Its protection level is 2 in STANAG 4569 and 2a / 2b against blast effects. It carries up to five personnel under high internal protection conditions. The pilot has several technical (engine and equipment control) and tactical screens connected to external cameras.
The DROZD amphibious vehicle, developed by the Baltic Machine Building Company, has high performance in terms of speed on land and especially on water thanks to its carbon fiber and Kevlar frame, shaped like a boat. It carries up to 1.5 tonnes (men and materials). In amphibious mode, the rear wheels are raised and the front wheels tilt horizontally. Amphibious propulsion is provided by a hydrojet. Its road speed reaches 100 km / h compared to 70 km / h on water. The machine can be equipped with a circular or a remotely operated turret.
The TTM 1901-40 “Berkut” vehicle was developed for combat in the arctic zone. The Russian army has already bought several dozen. It is the only vehicle with a heated cabin for two people and designed to operate at -50°C. It transports equipment or personnel and can tow several soldiers on skis. On snow, the machine reaches 40 km / h. Its mechanical and electrical designs make it easy to maintain.
Focus on the productions of the VPK group
VPK has been presenting innovative and efficient armored models for many years. The STRELA 4x4 air transportable armored vehicle (by plane and helicopter) can be used as a patrol or command vehicle. It can carry up to eight people, including the driver. Its modular design is entirely Russian made. Its ballistic protection is level 2 to STANAG 4569 and the armor withstands a ventral load of 2 kg.
The GAZ 3344-20 Aleut amphibious all-terrain vehicle is one of the most efficient developed by Russian industry. Particularly mobile, it is primarily intended for arctic units due to its resistance to cold. Composed of two connected tracked modules, the GAZ 3344-20 travels at nearly 60 km / h (and nearly 4 km / h on water) for a range of 800 km. The payloads are 500 kg for the front part and 2 t for the rear module.
The SBM VPK 233136 rapid response vehicle is intended for deep reconnaissance missions like the British Long Range Desert Group (LRDG). This light machine (tubular structure) easily reaches 120 km / h for a range of 1000 km. It is armed with a circular Kord machine gun, port machine guns and several consumable anti-tank rocket launchers complete the set.
The ZSA-T 4x4 armored ambulance has recently been used by the forces. It can quickly transport up to four wounded on stretcher or six seated. Its diesel engine allows it to reach 100 km / h for a range of 1000 km.
Evolutions in remotely operated turrets
The HUNTER turret, developed by the Russian firm RDA Electromashina, is equipped, despite its small dimensions, with numerous sensors and modules which make it possible to detect and possibly neutralize threats. Thus, this turret stabilized on two axes has day and thermal cameras, a 360° camera, a laser rangefinder, a radar and a laser detection and warning system. On the armament side, a 12.7x108 mm caliber Kord heavy machine gun, effective against light targets or even UAVs.
The Belarusian PRCS 2 remotely operated turret, developed by DDO JSC, weighs only 27 kg. It is intended for light vehicles that do not have sufficient payload. It is armed with an AKSU 74 rifle (30 round magazine) and two RPG 26 consumable rockets. The controls have no wiring, which makes it easy to integrate the turret. The optronic unit integrates a daylight channel, a laser rangefinder and can also receive a thermal camera.
Continuous innovations in infantry weapons.
Russia has several groups specializing in small arms and infantry attributes.
Kalashnikov presented several new features:
The AK 19 assault rifle, chambered for 5.56 x 45 mm NATO caliber ammunition, incorporates the latest modifications made to the AK 12 (Ratnik program). Its stock is adjustable in length and foldable on the side. the pistol grip and trigger guard arch are in one piece. The mechanical eyecup rear sight has been reduced. Its muzzle brake allows the direct mounting of a sound moderator. Finally, the weapon is equipped with at least two fixing rails, and others can be added.
The RPL 20 machine gun is powered by a non-disintegrating link belt. A significant effort has been made on ergonomics and weight (approximately 5 kg in the short barrel version): folding stock and adjustable in height, cheek support adjustable in. The barrel is equipped with several MLOK cavities for mounting accessories. A long Picatinny rail makes it possible to mount a whole range of optical means.
The PPK 20 submachine gun is the militarized version of the PP 2000 Vityaz, in service with the Interior Ministry. The metal skeleton stock has been replaced by a folding stock adjustable in length. Its ergonomic handle is similar to that of the AK 12. The weapon is fed by a 30 round synthetic magazine. The basic sighting system consists of a slider rear sight and a front sight protected by protective ears, however it is possible to add a "red dot" sight. Several mounting rails were placed on the barrel and the cylinder head cover. The weapon was presented for the occasion of a moderator.
Another well-known weapons producer, TsNIITochMash presented its PSS 2 pistol intended primarily for special forces. A fixing rail placed under the barrel allows the mounting of accessories. This evolution of the PSS is chambered for the SP 16 piston ammunition. Russia is the only country to master this technology, which offers the possibility of having a weapon more compact and lighter than a pistol with a sound moderator. The acoustic and light signatures of this ammunition are almost zero.
TsNIITochMash also presented the 9 x 19 mm Poloz caliber pistol, originally intended for the Home Office. This particularly compact model, smaller and lighter than the Udav, staffed in the armed forces, can be used with complete discretion. Replacing the polymer handle is done without changing the main parts. There are several magazines of different capacities (15 or 18 rounds). It is practical, reliable and easy to use. The cannon is given for 10,000 rounds.
The LOBAEV group specializes in precision weapons. The representatives of the group announce that they can meet the most diverse and even “exotic” requests, including developing specific ammunition. The founder, Mr. Lobaev, confirmed the development of a sniper rifle and its associated ammunition, capable of firing more than 7 km, far beyond what exists.
The Hermes guided artillery missile had not been presented for several years. This hypersonic missile (Mach 4) is guided by satellite (GPS or Glonass) and by laser designation in the terminal phase of flight (accuracy less than 1 m). Its heavy load (28 kg) allows long-distance handling (100 km) of medium tactical targets, ammunition or fuel depots. The firing module includes six launch tubes that can be mounted on a 6x6 frame. A gun battery consists of a command vehicle, several launchers and reloading vehicles.
Multiple, modern and efficient ammunition
The Vikhr 1 laser-guided air-to-ground rocket, developed by the Kalashnikov group, allows the vector (airplane, helicopter, even land launcher) to treat an area with precision while limiting collateral damage. This ammunition is compatible with all existing media. It only exists for the moment in an explosive version. It is guided in the terminal phase of flight by a laser designator on board the aircraft or directly from the ground.
The Breaching Wall KFZ ammunition consists of a shaped charge and a blast charge. This ammunition can be used in Breaching Wall mode, creating a hole in a wall allowing the passage of personnel or a ground drone. For this firing mode, the ammunition is fired from a four-legged horizontal support. Another use is the destruction of a structure (railway track, concrete structure). In this context, the ammunition will be mounted on a vertical tripod. The KFZ drills 630mm of brick, 400mm of concrete or stone and up to 20mm of steel.
The VKO 25 and BK 94 grenades were presented by the Russian Institute of Physical Applications. These two HEDP (High Explosive Dual Purpose) ammunition are used by caseless 40mm grenade launchers (GP 25, GP 30, GP 34) and GM 94 grenade launchers against lightly armored targets or light structures. The VKO 25 grenade carries to 400 m and the BK 94 grenade to 120 m. they perforate 160 to 170 mm of armor steel. The VKO 25 grenade also generates a spray of 160 shards.
The RATNIK program still in progress
The Russian firm TsNIITochMash offers its APK 1 electric exoskeleton. This Ratnik module allows the soldier to reduce his efforts when traveling. An electric motor to aid mobility is in development. The sound signature is much lower than that of the first exoskeletons developed in Europe.
Field of optronics
The LTSD 4, produced by the Russian group Shvabe, is a latest generation laser designator. In addition to its function of designating targets on the ground, it is capable of correcting artillery and aerial fire both day and night. This designator is compatible with all high precision laser guided munitions. It can be coupled with automated fire control systems. The LTSD 4 can design a tank by day to nearly 7 km and by night (coupled with a thermal camera) up to 4 km.
The company ROMZ presented several optronic systems including the TV Klest telescope. This telescope (magnification X 2.3) is equipped with a CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor) sensor, allowing it to be used day and night. The Klest can be mounted on an assault rifle and / or sniper rifle. A built-in infrared illuminator improves image definition in poor conditions. The scope is available with a so-called "swallowtail" side rail or a MIL STD 1913 Picatinny rail.
Countering the threat of IEDs and UAVs, and transmissions
The firm STT Group offers the complex portable system Kotomka. It consists of an IED jamming system, and a metal detector. The jammer is mounted on a carrying rack coupled to a radiation reduction system, which is very useful for the user. The antennas are placed on the top of the carrying rack. The soldier in charge of this jamming system must nevertheless wear specific protective clothing. Other, more powerful Voenitsa jamming systems for armored vehicles are available.
Radeskan aerial drone combat system (Belarusian firm Umirs) is a complete piece of equipment for the armed and security forces. The system comprises three electronic blocks: a 360 ° radar which detects the threat (s), coupled to another radar which processes the front of the carrier vehicle, an optronic system which makes it possible to identify the threat and finally a neutralization module which allows also to know the position of the opposing transmitter. The assembly is mounted on a fixed or retractable mast.
The Belarusian firm AGAT presented the MTCS (Mobile Tropospheric Communication System) system. Tropospheric communication makes it possible to work with radio signals over considerable distances, sometimes up to 300 km. The assembly is mounted on a 6x6 frame. The shelter has two large antennas of the same architecture. data transmission and reception takes place at a speed of up to 8448 kbps for a distance of 150 km.
Kubinka - Air Force
The part of the Armya lounge devoted to the air forces was mainly located at Kubinka Air Base, a few kilometers from Patriot Park. More than 40 aircraft were presented in static and during a particularly impressive air show. The show was opened with the solo presentation of 058 blue, the latest Su-57 prototype. Several other aircraft then followed one another: Su-35S, Mig-35S, Su-34, Su-30SM, the “Vityaz” and “Strizhi” patrols or the Mi-28N and Ka-52 helicopters. A MiG-35S was shown heavily armed, with four air-to-air and four air-to-surface missiles under the wings, an additional fuel tank under the belly, and its designation pod.
On the heavy aircraft side, the A-50U, a modernized version of the Russian AWACS, was clearly visible at the head of the row of planes as a maritime patrol Il-38SD concluded the row. The presence of several aircraft was expected, and the real surprise came from the first presentation of the Kinzhal missile mounted on the MiG-31K. One of the Su-57 prototypes, the same one unveiled at MAKS-2019, was also present.
Several helicopters were shown on the static, with in particular, in addition to the equipment of the forces, the Mi-26TV2, Mi-38, and Mi-17V5.
The Kret company presented several new features including an "all-in-one" large touchscreen for the MiG-35. Allowing an extremely intuitive presentation of flight and mission information to the pilot, this display is remarkably simple and clear. The pilot only has his HUD and a main screen in front of him.
Another innovative project is a laser speed measurement module replacing the traditional Pitot probe. This laser measures the speed of movement of dust in the ambient air. This solution makes it possible to overcome the known weaknesses of the Pitot probes, and in particular the risk of freezing.
Other hardware on display included a liquid crystal HUD for displaying an overlay video stream, a jam-hardened GPS / GLONASS positioning system, and a touchscreen tablet interface between the mission preparation system and the plane. All these devices will soon be put into service with the Russian forces.
Patriot Park - Air Force (halls and static stands)
The Kronshtadt company, specialized in aerial drones, was particularly dynamic during this edition. If the Orion armed drone, recently acquired by the Russian forces, held its place at the head of the stand, the company offered three drone projects called Grom, Gelios-RLD and Sirius. With a wingspan of 10 m and 13 long, with a maximum mass of 7 tonnes (speed of nearly 1000 km / h), the Grom comes into direct competition with the Okhotnik in the role of the UCAVs. The project includes a capacity to work in cooperation with piloted combat aircraft. In addition to its usual missions, destruction of anti-aircraft defenses in depth or strategic targets, it will be able to participate in reconnaissance missions. The Grom has two weapons points in the belly hold and two external points under the wings. It will be able to carry guided ammunition up to 500 kg.
The MALE Sirius drone has a wingspan of 23 m for a maximum mass of 2 t. It carries nearly 300 kg of weaponry for 20 hours. Multi-mission, it has several modular loads, mounted as needed: optronics, mapping, SAR, ELINT, EM jamming, armament. It has six points of transport, two of which are in the belly compartment.
Finally, close to Sirius, the Gelios-RLD radar surveillance drone has a wingspan of 30 m and weighs four tonnes. It will be able to detect air, land and naval targets for 30 hours, at a maximum altitude of 11,000 m.
The Zaslon group presented its new Rezets Active Electronic Scanning Antenna (AESA) radar, intended for the Ka-52 helicopter in a naval version. This X-band radar can detect air and surface targets, fixed or mobile, IFF, terrain mapping and obstacle detection, as well as weather monitoring. It is equipped with an automatic equipment control system, informing users of the operational status of the radar and transceiver modules. It can also be coupled to the optronic means of the helicopter.
Means of detection and defense
The Almaz-Antey consortium presented the Antey4000 and Abakan systems. The first is an improvement of the Antey-2500, especially in terms of range (380km against 350), and electronics. The 9M82MDE high performance missile is now fitted as standard, and the radars have not been modified. The goal of the upgrades is to achieve better performance against ballistic missiles and stealth targets. A new chassis based on the prolific GM series can also be used for missile launch vehicles.
The Abakan is a 51P6E type vehicle, already used on certain TEL S-400s, on which two 9M82MDE missile tubes have been fitted. The radar, which was only shown on an explanatory panel, could be the new Yenissei radar. The system is exclusively dedicated to anti-ballistic control.
The company Rusbal, which specializes in the manufacture of inflatable lures, presented a Pantsir S1 system on a MAN SX-45 chassis. These particularly realistic lures seen from the sky, can also include metal panels and heating elements. The decoy works against the opposing optical, radar or thermal types of reconnaissance. These lures are very light and easy to use, and are easily modifiable. The radar and the missile tubes are mobile. The cabin part exists in several chassis versions.
The Rosel consortium presented several new vehicles.
The new POST-3M mobile electronic reconnaissance station (ELINT) is mounted on a Kamaz-43118 chassis specially adapted to the dimensions of the station, it includes, in addition to the driver's cabin, a large shelter intended to house the receiving antenna, the operator's cabin, and the means of electrical generation and air conditioning. The POST-3M detects all radar means in the 2 to 40 GHz range, over 360 °, measures the direction of arrival and identifies the perceived emissions. It has its own signal analysis capability. Implemented by two operators and a driver-mechanic, it is designed to operate independently or in a network with two other stations in order to triangulate the position of the transmitters. The vehicle can remain operational for more than 40 hours on its only internal fuel tank. The antenna block, weighing more than 700 kg, can be lifted 10 m from the ground and withstands up to 140 km / h of wind.
Another novelty is a Vystrel armored vehicle modified for anti-drone combat. It does not yet have a name other than "multifunction mobile system". Very recently developed on a clean background, the system includes a surveillance radar dedicated to very small targets, an optronic system with TV, IR and laser channels, and the whole is implemented by a single operator. The laser has not yet been tested in destruction mode. The industrialist thinks, like many, that the laser is an ideal recourse in the fight against the swarms of drones.
Rosel also presented a light mobile MANPADS fire command and management system. It includes a light vehicle containing a radio communication set and two integrated computers for monitoring the near air situation on the one hand and for managing shooters on the other. It also carries several hardened "computer" cases intended to relocate the management function and subdivide it over several firing teams. Finally, a light system integrated into the combat gear makes it possible to aim very precisely and quickly at the assigned target, whatever the weather conditions. This allows a considerable saving of time and a marked increase in the efficiency of MANPADS.
The Stilsoft group presented the autonomous drone Albatros M2. With an autonomy of around 30 minutes and capable of operating up to 3 km from its starting point. If these figures seem low at first glance, what makes it extremely interesting is that it is dedicated to responding to all types of alarms in a sensitive area. Thus, if an intrusion alarm is triggered in an installation, the drone is automatically sent to the site of the alarm, and sends the images to the control post. This is therefore much faster than human intervention and allows to see if it is necessary, and if it is the case to let the responders know what they are dealing with. The drone is stored in an airtight container that protects it from the elements and keeps it batteries charged at all times. When an alarm is triggered, the flight plan to the location in question is loaded automatically, the container opens and the drone takes off. At the end of the operation, he returns to his platform, the container closes and recharges the batteries. This system is particularly suitable for monitoring isolated sites, for example limiting unnecessary interventions on alarms triggered by the frequent passage of wild animals. It can be used stand-alone or integrated into a complex monitoring network.
Patriot Park - Naval Forces
The KAB PL "Zagon-2E" anti-submarine bomb weighs 120 kg. It is intended to be carried by ASM fighter planes and helicopters. An Il-38 or a Tu-142 can carry 20, compared to eight for a Ka-29 helicopter. Braked by a parachute after being dropped at low altitude, it floats for a while in order to let its seeker acquire its target. Its active sonar located at the front point searches at an angle of 120 ° (60 ° on either side of the vertical) and up to a depth of 600 m. Once the target is locked, the flotation system is released and the ammunition leaves in autonomous mode on an impact point calculated according to the trajectory of its target. The bomb is equipped with a shaped charge of 20 kg.
The Rubin company presented a series of Amulet underwater mini-drones, as well as the Vityaz underwater drone for deep-sea exploration. Almost 6 m long and weighing almost 6 t, he notably led an exploration mission in the Mariana Trench, at a depth of more than 10,000 m. The Amulet and Amulet-2 drones are shallow underwater mini-drones, intended for the surveillance of port areas or for reconnaissance. They have 6 hours of endurance at a depth of 75 m. Its modular design allows the sensors to be adapted according to the mission. It can in particular receive a sonar modem to remain in communication with the surface.
Sources: French Armed Forces Staff
Rights: French Ministry of the Armed Forces