Kyiv: With its vast steppe interspersed with occasional villages and towns, Ukraine has presented the perfect canvas for multiple tank battles during the ongoing invasion by Russia.
While Russia has thrown the might of its entire tank fleet into the war, the much smaller army of Ukraine has managed to get some formidable fighting machines from its allies in the West.
As a result, the war between Russia and Ukraine has featured several interesting battles between the much-vaunted Russian tanks and their equally fearsome counterparts from the West.
Let us have a look at some of the tanks that have featured in the Russia-Ukraine war.
Designed and manufactured in the former Soviet Union, the T-80 main battle tank (MBT) is based on the T-64. Later upgraded versions have incorporated features from T-72 MBT.
The brainchild of Soviet engineer Nikolay Popov, the T-80 entered service in 1976. It featured a gas turbine engine, only the second tank to do so after the Swedish Stridsvagn 103.
The T-80 is a main battle tank (MBT) that was designed and manufactured in the former Soviet Union and manufactured in Russia. The T-80 is based on the T-64, while incorporating features from the later T-72. The chief designer of the T-80 was Soviet engineer Nikolay Popov. When it entered service in 1976, it was the second MBT in the world to be equipped with a gas turbine engine after the Stridsvagn 103 of Sweden.
The T-80U was last produced in 2001 at a factory in the Russian town of Omsk. However, the Ukrainian T-80UD diesel engine variant continued to be produced in Ukraine, which further developed the T-80UD as the T-84.
A third-generation Russian main battle tank, the T-90 was developed from the T-72. Wielding a 125 mm 2A46 smoothbore main gun, the 1A45T fire-control system, an upgraded engine, and gunner’s thermal sight the T-90 was among most feared tanks when it entered service in 1992.
Standard protective measures in the T-90 include a mixture of steel and composite armour, smoke grenade dischargers and the Kontakt-5 explosive reactive armour (ERA) apart from the Shtora infrared anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) jamming system.
Designed and built by Uralvagonzavod in Nizhny Tagil, Russia the T-90 was designed and built by Uralvagonzavod, in the town of Nizhny Tagil, Russia.
The design and development of the T-90 started in the erstwhile Soviet Union with the aim of developing a single replacement for the T-64, T-72 and T-80 tanks.
Developed from the T-64, the T-72 resulted from a rivalry between different design teams and entered production in 1969.
Around 25,000 units of the T-72 tank have been built. Refurbishments and upgrades have allowed many of these to remain in service for decades.
The T-72 tank was extensively exported by the esrtwhile Soviet Union and later, Russia and has seen service in 40 countries and numerous conflicts.
Armed with a smoothbore 120 mm cannon, the Leopard 2 is operated with a digital fire control system, laser rangefinder, and advanced night vision and sighting equipment. A V-12 twin-turbo diesel engine powers the tank[/caption]
A third generation German main battle tank (MBT), the Leopard 2 was developed in the 1970s and was commissioned in 1979.
It replaced the Leopard 1 as the main battle tank in the West German military. Various upgraded versions of the Leopard 2 are still used by the German Army as well as 13 other European nations.
Several non-European countries are also using this tank including Canada, Chile, Indonesia, and Singapore.
Armed with a smoothbore 120 mm cannon, the Leopard 2 is operated with a digital fire control system, laser rangefinder, and advanced night vision and sighting equipment. A V-12 twin-turbo diesel engine powers the tank.
One of the heaviest tanks in service at almost 62 tons, the M1 Abrams introduced several modern technologies to the US Army such as a multifuel turbine engine, sophisticated Chobham composite armour, a computer fire control system, separate ammunition storage in a blow-out compartment, and NBC protection for crew safety.
Having entered service in 1980, the M1 Abrams first saw combat during the Gulf War in 1991 and has also served in the War in Afghanistan and the Iraq War.
Still used as the main battle tank of the US Army, the M1 Abrams is also used by the armies of Egypt, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Australia, and Iraq.
A third generation British main battle tank (MBT), the FV4034 Challenger 2 is the result of an extensive redesign of its predecessor, the Challenger 1.
Along with a L94A1 EX-34 7.62 mm chain gun and a 7.62 mm L37A2 (GPMG) machine gun, it carries 50 main armament rounds and 4,200 rounds of 7.62 mm ammunition.
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