Rostec to test upgraded Sprut-SDM1 light amphibious tank
High-precision complexes of the Russian State Corporation Rostec handed over the upgraded prototypes of the Sprut-SDM1 tank for state tests. Over the next year and a half, the vehicle will be tested in the field by military units of the Ministry of Defense. The new tank has been designed and developed by PJSC Kurganmashzavod, which is part of the High-Precision Complexes holding of the State Corporation Rostec.
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Sprut-SDM1 displayed at Army 2019 Forum (Picture source: Army Recognition)
As reported earlier by Army Recognition, on June 27, 2019, the chief designer of the Special Machine-Building Design Bureau, Sergei Abdulov, told TASS that the firm was working on a new lightweight tanks based on the Sprut-SDM1 self-propelled anti-tank gun. It would not be an airborne vehicle but should remain amphibious.
Sprut-SDM1 will be tested in sea and high altitude conditions, in different climatic zones, including at air temperatures ranging from -40 to +40°C. Shooting tests are foreseen at each stage. Based on the results of these state tests, the design documentation for the new tank will be approved with the assignment of the letter "O1", which will allow to start serial production. Subsequently, following the results of the work of the interdepartmental commission, the vehicle will be recommended for adoption by the Russian army.
As compared to the original Sprut, the new vehicle benefits from enhanced protection and a different running gear: it will use the torsion bar suspension from the BMP-3 IFV that is more reliable and easier to operate than the Sprut’s hydro-pneumatic gear, the chief designer said, adding that "the weapons on the vehicle would remain the same.
Vladimir Artyakov, First Deputy General Director of Rostec State Corporation, indeed said « The modernized light amphibious tank Sprut-SDM1 has become more mobile thanks to the installation of a more efficient engine, transmission, undercarriage assemblies, information and control system of the chassis, previously tested on BMD-4M and BMP-3. In addition, it has become possible to achieve an increase in command control : the updated tank has a software and hardware complex for operation as part of an automated tactical control system. Combat power is enhanced by a new digital fire control system. There are no analogues of Sprut-SDM1 in the world. Therefore, it has a high export potential ».
If necessary, the tank can be equipped with wider snow and swamp tracks, which further expands the possibilities of its use.
Light amphibious tank Sprut-SDM1 is a combat armored tracked amphibious vehicle with a gun/missile system of 125 mm caliber, which can, without refueling, cover a distance of 500 km, be transported by landing ship and military transport aircraft, and be airdroped parachute even with the crew on board.
“In terms of firepower, the Sprut-SDM1 is not inferior to the T-80 and T-90 tanks, and in terms of mobility on land and water it is at the level of the BMD-4M. These and other qualities, combined with the stabilization of the gun in two axes, make it possible to use the Sprut-SDM1 as a light amphibious tank, "said Alexander Denisov, General Director of the High Precision Complexes NPO.
Sprut-SDM1 (Picture source: Rostec/Russian army)