Ukraine has already received 270 T-72 tanks from Poland and Czech Republic
- Ukraine - Russia conflict war 2022
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Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, February 24, 2022, Ukrainian armed forces have received a total of 270 T-72 MBT (Main Battle Tank) variants from Poland and the Czech Republic including T-72M1 and T-72M1R, most of them received additional Kontakt-1 ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor).
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Ukraine has received 270 T-72 tank variants from Poland and the Czech Republic. (Picture source Twitter Ukraine Weapons Tracker)
Citing open source information, the Czech Republic donated an undisclosed number of T-72M1 Soviet-made MBT (Main Battle Tank) from its military inventory while Poland supplied a total of 230 T-72 tanks including T-72M1 and T-72M1R variants.
Citing information from the Ukrainian armed forces, most of the T-72 MBTs donated by Poland and the Czech Republic have been upgraded with the integration of a Kontakt-1 ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor) mounted at the front of the turret and the front and the sides of the hull.
According to information published by the "Ukraine Weapons Tracker" Twitter account, Ukraine received a supply of 4S20 explosive elements from the Czech company STV Group which were used to integrate Kontakt-1 ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor) on T-72 tanks.
Each Kontakt-1 block consists of two 4S20 explosive elements which are composed of plastic explosives sandwiched between two flat steel plates. The operating principle of the armor lies in the disruption of shaped charge jets through the violent separation of the steel plates sandwiching the explosive layer upon detonation. With the use of Kontakt-1 armor, the tank has increased protection against anti-tank guided missiles and RPGs (Rocket-Propelled Grenades). The original T-72M1 tanks donated by Poland and the Czech Republic were not equipped with this type of armor.
The T-72M1 is a modernized T-72M, which is the export version of the T-72A and has an additional layer of 16 mm armor plate on the glacis plate and combination armor in the turret with pelletized filler agent. There are two ribs on the upper glacis plate.
The T-72M1R is a Polish modernization of the T-72M1 featuring a new fire control system, thermal imaging sight for the gunner, and communication system as well as GPS DAGR (Defense Advanced GPS Receiver), and several other enhancements. The rear part of the turret is also fitted with a new basket. It keeps the same armament as the T-72M1.
The T-72M1 is armed with one 125 mm 2A46 gun. The second armament of the T-72M1 includes one 7.62 mm caliber PKT machine gun mounted coaxially to the right of the main armament and has 250 rounds of ready to use ammunition and a new design of 12.7 mm caliber NSV machine gun mounted on the commander's cupola.