Monday, January 12, 2015

How to identify Russian tanks in Ukraine

I got lost in the Ts the Bs and the numbers of Russian tanks in Ukraine and how to distinguish every variant.

Peter Johnson @Alcebaid was very helpful, gave me some tips and then made this guide which I edited a little bit for even easier reading.

There are four main battle tanks: T-64, T-72, T-80 and T-90.
T-80 is hardly seen.

T-64 has considerably smaller wheels:


T-64 had track segments made of two parts:

T-72Б had 1-part-segments:

Starting from T-72БA and up it was 2-part-segments again:

T-64 exhaust is at the back of the tank (sometimes they attach a log there). T-72 has its exhaust at the left side.


T-72Б3 (shape of exhaust depends on engine):

Infrared searchlight
Older T-64 had an infrared light on the left side of the turret. T-72 on the right side.

A T-64БB:

A T-72Б:

A T-72-БA:

Rear-view turret
T-64 has one long box for spare parts and instruments. T-72 had three, left, right and behind.

T-64БB (the pipe is for underwater driving):


Ukrainian upgrades

Backbone of Ukrainian army. IR lamp on left side. "Kontakt-1" ERA (reactive armor)

T-64БM Bulat
Deep T-64 upgrade. IR lamp removed. "Nizh" (knife) ERA. Rubber sheets attached to turret.

Since september 2014. "Kontakt"-like ERA. Bulat-like signs.

Russian upgrades

Old tracks, "Kontakt-1" ERA, IR-lamp on right.

New tracks, meteo-sensor, "Kontakt-5" ERA (although sometimes older)

IR-lamp removed, new Sosna-U sights (with IR-possibility)

Deep upgrade of the T-72Б. "Shtora-1 lamps on both sides.

Another handy guide is: How to identify Russian units in Ukraine.

1 comment:

  1. I should mention, that in T-64 wheels are not only smaller, but look convex from side, and in T-72 wheels look concave


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