Umbrella for the tank

There were times when the designers felt that the best protection of the tank against HEAT projectile is ... an umbrella! Yes, yes, do not be surprised, just as an umbrella is put on the barrel of the gun, was made the original protection. So much so that she even planned to adopt, and only tested on a variety of Soviet tanks.
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Successful application of the Second World War, anti-tank weapons to defeat the principle of cumulative armor facilities has pushed designers and scientists to further improve this type of ammunition. In the postwar years, the cumulative armor piercing projectiles was increased almost two times.
By that time, it became clear that the book of Soviet tanks T-54, T-55, T-62 does not provide protection against the above ammunition. The thicknesses of the armor parts of our tanks were: upper front 100 mm at an angle of inclination of 60 °, the lower front sheet 100 mm with an inclination of 55 °, the side body 80 mm at 0 ° and forehead tower 170-90 mm at 23-55 °. Therefore, for protection of 85 mm HEAT projectile with copper funnel was necessary to have the thickness of the upper front plate 215 mm 250 mm lower frontal, side having at least 250 mm at the same angles of inclination. When firing 115-mm shells cumulative these parameters were 260, 290 and 200 mm, respectively. Such an increase in thickness of the hull armor parts would increase their weight by 9-10 tonnes, which, for obvious reasons, was unacceptable.
Therefore, to solve the problem of protection of tanks firing in the direction of the hull sides and in the range of 25 °, bearings of the cumulative rounds of ammunition and 115 mm in 1964, has been developed and have been thoroughly tested Screens protection ZET-1. It consisted of a continuous mesh front and side skirts.
Properties screen as protection against chemical weapons is based on the fact that the contact with the screen is the cumulative projectile his break came to the meeting with the armor of the tank, resulting in a cumulative jet formed before reaching the tank's armor, flew into the air a considerable distance. When moving the air jet decays, whereby its penetration dramatically declined, and she could not penetrate the armor.
Weight mesh screen was 60 kg, the minimum distance between the screen and armor - 1800 mm. Transfer time from traveling to combat was 2-3 minutes, and for the installation of the tank on the screen - no more than 15 minutes. The difference between the screens for the T-54/55 and T-62 was only in diameter at the base, fastening on the gun barrel. Side skirts were sectioned type and made of aluminum. Their weight was around 200 kg, the minimum distance between the edge of the tank and the screen section (steering angle section to the axis of the tank at 30 °) was 1500 mm. Transfer time from traveling to combat was about 1 minute, and the installation of the tank on podgotovlennny - 3 minutes.
The main focus during the test of comprehensive protection has been on the definition of its vitality in the shelling, as well as durability and reliability in the operation of fixing the tank.
For design ZET-1, it was to ensure the destruction of only one section of the screen when you hit 85-mm shells and two sections in contact 100-115-mm projectile. Conducted in early 1964 test firing almost completely confirmed plans of designers. In addition, it was noted that the replacement of a section of the field is only 2 minutes.
Equally important step test was to check the reliability of mounting screens. For this experimental tanks T-55 and T-62 have been running tests (of 500 km) to overcome various obstacles. They end it was noted that as the mounting board and the mesh screens are generally quite reliable.
In conclusion, the state commission noted "a significant increase in the protection of the tank when using the above protection", and recommended to "take on the supply of the Soviet Army front mesh screen ZET-1." With respect to on-board screens were encouraged to review their method of attachment to the tank.
However, the mesh screen is not particularly "settled down" - by order of the Chief of the Tank-Automotive Management provided their use only "threat period, just before the outbreak of hostilities." After adopting the T-64 and T-72 with a fundamentally different structure armor (multilayer) snaryadostoykosti increased need for mesh screens altogether disappeared.

Tank T-55, equipped with a comprehensive protection Spaced Armour (stowed position)

Tank T-55, equipped with a comprehensive protection Spaced Armour (firing position)

Tank T-62, with a comprehensive protection Spaced Armour (stowed position)

Tank T-62, with a comprehensive protection Spaced Armour (firing position)

The body of the T-54, equipped with an integrated screen protection and prepared for testing shell fire

Tank T-62, equipped with an integrated Spaced Armour protection overcomes bush land

Tank T-55, equipped with a comprehensive protection Spaced Armour (firing position)

Status screen ZET-1 and the upper front plate after hitting the screen is 100mm shaped-charge fragmentation snayaryada gun T-12

Type of shielding the starboard hull of the T-54 after four hits 85mm HEAT projectile with copper funnel

Type of shielding the starboard hull of the T-54 after the first hit 85-mm HEAT projectile



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