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Russian army uses in Ukraine 2S34 Hosta latest generation of 120mm self-propelled mortar

According to a video published by the Russian Ministry of Defense on February 16, 2023, the Russian army has deployed in Ukraine its latest generation of 120mm tracked self-propelled mortar carrier armored vehicle 2S34 also nicknamed Hosta or Chosta.
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The 2S34 Hosta is the latest generation of 120mm tracked self-propelled mortar vehicle in service with the Russian army. (Picture source Russian MoD)

The artillery capabilities of the Russian armed forces have always been a key element in invading a country. Even during the Cold War period, Russian tactics during an offensive consisted of massive artillery usage, including howitzers, towed guns, and multiple rocket launchers.

According to our latest information, before the war in Ukraine, the Russian army had 4,684 artillery weapons including 150 2S1 Gvozdika, 800 2S3 Akatsiya, 100 2S5 Giatsint-S, 500 2S19/2S19M1 Msta-S, 320 2S19M2/2S33 Msta-SM, 8 2S35 Koalitsiya-SV, 60 2S7M Malka and 4,260 in store including 2,000 2S1 Gvozdika, 1,000 2S3 Akatsiya, 850 2S5 Giatsint-S, 150 2S19 Msta-S, 203mm 260 2S7 Pion)

The towed artillery weapons of the Russian army consists of 150 2A65 Msta-B, 4,400 D-30, 3,750 M-30 (M-1938), 650 M-46, 1,100 2A36 Giatsint-B, 600 2A65 Msta-B, 1,075 D-20, 700 D-1 (M-1943), 100 M-1937 and 40 B-4M.

The Russian armed forces also have a large number of operational MLRSs (Multiple Launch Rocket Systems) with 550 BM-21 Grad, 180 9K51M Tornado-G, 200 9P140 Uragan, 6 9K512 Uragan-1M, TOS-1A, 100 9A52 Smerch, 20 9K515 Tornado-S and 3,220 MLRS in store consisting of 2,000 BM-21 Grad, 420 9P138, 100 BM-13 and 700 9P140 Uragan.

In January 2023, it was reported by the Russian Defense Ministry Spokesman Lieutenant-General Igor Konashenkov that Russian artillery struck amassed manpower of two Ukrainian army brigades in the Kupyansk area. "Artillery continues to be an important striking force for Russian forces, used to destroy combat units and strategic objectives.

The 2S34 is a self-propelled 120mm mortar system developed by the Russian defense company, Motovilicha Plants. It is designed for use by Russian artillery units and can operate in a variety of conditions and terrains.

The 2S34 is based on a modified MT-LB armored tracked chassis as for the Russian-made 2S1 Gvozdika 122mm self-propelled howitzer. The vehicle is fitted with a turret armed with one 120mm mortar and an automatic loading system, as well as a digital fire control system. The 2S34 can fire up to 10 rounds per minute with a range of up to 13 km. The system can be operated by a crew of five and has a maximum speed of up to 60 km/h.

The 2S34 features an automatic loading system that allows the crew to rapidly load and fire 120mm mortar rounds. The system includes an ammunition magazine located at the rear of the vehicle, which holds up to 40 rounds of mortar ammunition.

The automatic loading system uses a conveyor belt to transfer the rounds from the ammunition magazine to the turntable, where the mortar is located. The rounds are then loaded into the mortar tube using an automatic rammer, which pushes the round into the tube with a pneumatic system. The entire loading process is controlled by the vehicle's digital fire control system, which helps to ensure accurate firing.

The automatic loading system of the 2S34 is one of the key features that make it an effective and efficient weapon system, allowing the crew to rapidly engage targets with a high rate of fire.

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