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The T-90 main battle tank is armed with the high precision 125mm smooth-bore gun
stabilized in two planes, the 7.62mm coaxial machine gun (PKT or PKTM), and the
12.7mm anti-aircraft machine gun (NSVT-12.7 or KORD). The T-90 has the automated
Fire Control System with digital ballistic calculator and the thermal vision day/night sight
designator, the loading system (LS) which provide high battle efficacy of the weapons
use. The anti-aircraft machine gun system (AAMGS) equipped with remote sighting and
targeting facilities allows fire against air and surface targets from the battle compartment
of the tank. The vehicle is equipped with the TShU-1 (Shtora-1) Electro-Optical
Suppression System (EOSS) which reduces probability of hitting by enemy anti-tank
guided missiles (ATGM) by means of jamming their guidance systems, and also by anti-
tank weapons with laser target designators and range-finders. There are the following
systems installed in the T-90 tank: the Common Protection System (CPS) against
Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), the quick-operating Fire-Prevention Equipment
(FPE) on the basis of optical inflammation sensors, the equipment for self-digging-in, the
equipment for negotiating water obstacles on the bottom (NWOB). The tank incorporated
the design solutions reducing efficacy of heat signature detecting and targeting systems
and providing protection against napalm-like fire mixtures. It is made a provision for
installing the KM7-6M2 track blade mine clearer, the KMT-7 roller mine plow or the
KMT-8 blade mine clearer with electromagnetic auxiliary unit.


The tank design has the classic structure. It is functionally divided into three
compartments: the driver compartment (DC) equipped with the tank driver seat – in the
nose part, the combat compartment (CC) – in the middle part, and the engine-and-
transmission compartment (ETC) – in the rear part. The CC is designed to arrange the
weaponry, the most part of the ammunition, and the workplaces for the tank commander
(on the right) and the gunner (on the left).

The distinctive feature of the vehicle, as of all the soviet tanks beginning from the T-64
which have the armored volume of 11.0 m3 only, is the high composition density as well
as the smallest dimensions among main battle tanks, the height first of all. The internal
volume reduction and high composition density were achieved by the compact ETC
system with transversal engine mounting, by the charger expulsion from the crew, i.e. by
means of applying automatic loading and a number of other design measures.

T-90 has the welded hull which is identical to the hull of the T-72BM. The bottom is
pressed, the upper front panel (UFP) is multilayered (it consists of three layers: the upper
steel plate, the back steel plate and the reflecting sheets which are located between them)
with the built-in re-active armor. The slope of the UFP is 68 degrees. The rectangle steel
shields with the elements of the built-in re-active armor (BRA) are installed on the side
rubber-fabric shields. The vehicle has three shields of such type on each side.

The tank driver is accommodated in the front hull part and has the individual hatch
having the cover in the middle of the hull. The driver's seat is fastened to the hull roof
providing increased probability of survival to the driver in case of a mine exploding
under the bottom of the vehicle. He has one TNPO-168 prism viewer with wide field of
vision to observe road conditions. The TVN-5 active/passive night vision device can be
installed instead of the above mentioned system. It differs from its predecessor with the
micro-channel amplifying electro-optical converter in the active/passive mode instead of
two parallel circuits (the active one separately and the passive one separately). Thereby
the range of vision was increased up to 180m in the passive mode.

The TVN-5 device is also equipped with the binocular loupe which significantly
facilitates the terrain observation and reduces fatigability of the tank driver's eyes when
the illumination changes.

The other two crew members are accommodated in the turret: the gunner's seat is on the
left and the tank commander's one is on the right.

The tank has cast steel turret with the combined armor on the course angles up to 35°. Its
construction is identical to the turret of T-72BM, but it is designed to install the 1A45T
Fire Control System. The front and the top of the turret are protected with the re-active
armor elements.

To increase anti-radiation protection of the vehicle crew the hull and turret are enforced
with the liner which is made of hydrogenous polymer with additions of lithium, boron
and lead in the zones of the workplaces. The place of the tank driver is additionally
protected with the liner made of the same material.

Weapon System

All the T-90 weapons are located in the turret. The weapon system consists of: the
armaments (primary, secondary, and ancillary), the ammunition, the automatic loader
system, the Fire Control System, additional devices for observing and targeting as well as
the guided weapon system.

Primary armament

The high precision 125m 2A46M-4 smooth-bore gun/launcher is the primary armament
of the T-90. Its cyclic rate of fire is up to 8 rounds per minute. Rounds of the following
types are applied for the gunnery: guided missile, anti-armor-subcaliber, high-explosive
fragmentation, high-explosive/antitank projectiles.

The high precision characteristics of the gun were achieved by optimal combining the
curvature, nonuniformity of the wall thickness and the barrel rigidity, by symmetric
arrangement of the buffers, by the use of the barrel thermo-protection jacket. The
embedded device for the gun aligning with both the primary and thermal vision sights
allows aligning without the crew escape from the tank as well as reduces the duration of
this operation to 1 minute increasing the aligning accuracy at the same time. The gun
design provides fast change of the barrel (without dismounting the gun from the turret) in
the field conditions.

Secondary armament

T-90 uses 7.62mm coaxial machine gun (PKT or PKTM) with the combat fire rate of 150
shots per minute with belt feed as well as the anti-aircraft machine gun system (AAMGS)
with remute electromechanical control.

The AAMGS is intended to engage lightly armored ground targets, low altitude air
targets as well as to protect the tank against air attacks in highland terrain and city battle
conditions. The AAMGS uses the 12.7mm NSVT-12.7 or the 6P49 KORD large-caliber
machine guns. The KORD machine gun supersedes its predecessor NSVT-12.7 due to (at
first) the plant, where they were manufactured before the USSR collapse, remained in
Kazakhstan. The initial decision was to produce NSVT in Kovrov, but then the machine
gun was modernized (the barrel locking changed, endurance increased, some other
modifications implemented), it was named "KORD", and now it has been produced in
Kovrov Weapons Factory named after Degtyaryov. Both the machine guns have identical
fastening units, ammunition and belts, ballistic characteristics, so each of them can be
used in the T-90 as the AAMGS.

Detecting, monitoring ground and air targets as well as firing the AAMGS, which is
mounted onto the commander cupola, are carried out with the cupola hatch closed. The
AAMGS consists of the 6P49 KORD (or NSVT-12.7) machine gun with the electric
trigger, the cradle with the recoil absorber, the bracket, the balancing unit, the reloading
mechanism, the magazine, the belt collector, the horizontal and vertical
electromechanical targeting drives, the PZU-7.216.644 sight.

The drives of the AAMGS provide horizontal and vertical pointing as well as the anti-
aircraft machine gun fire control.

The vertical electromechanical pointing drive is designed to point the anti-aircraft

machine gun along the vertical axis. The drive provides the following operation modes:
the "Automatic" mode – the AAMGS monitors stabilized position of the TKN-4S device
mirror within the angle range from -4°to +20°: the "Semi-Automatic" mode – the
AAMGS is controlled independently of the stabilized TKN-4S device mirror (i.e. fast
drive): "the Manual" mode – the AAMGS is targeted manually within the whole range of

The horizontal electromechanical drive is designed to point the commander cupola with
the AAMGS in the horizontal plane within the arc 60° to the right and 60° to the left from
the conformal position with the primary armament.

The PZU-7 sight is designed to point the anti-aircraft machine gun when firing against air
targets moving at the velocities of 100-300 mps and ground targets within the range up to
1600 m. It represents optical monocular periscope (1.2x zoom factor).
The autonomous anti-aircraft machine gun of the closed type with the remote
electromechanical control allows commander, being protected with the armor, fire
effectively to engage air targets, lightly armored ground targets and troops of the enemy.

Ancillary armament

The ancillary armament of the tank includes one 5.45mm AKS-74 assault rifle, ten hand
grenades (F-1 or RGO) and the 26-mm signal pistol


The T-90's ammunition includes 43 separately loaded rounds of 4 types (with a guided
missile, anti-armor-subcaliber, high-explosive/antitank, high-explosive fragmentation
projectiles) as well as 2000 cartridges for the 7.62 coaxial machine gun, and 300
cartridges for the AAMGS. The vehicles ammunition also includes 450 5.45mm
cartridges for the AKS-74, 12 signal rockets for the signal pistol, 10 hand grenades (F-1
or RGO), and 12 ZD17 grenades for the 902V electro-optical jamming system. The
ZD6M grenades are included into the vehicle version without the TshU-1 "Shtora-1"

22 rounds for the tank gun (including GMs) are arranged in the carousel transporter of the
automatic loader and are ready for the combat use. The other gun rounds (projectiles and
cartridges) are placed into the special packing cases in the vehicle hull and in the turret.
The rounds, which are in the carousel transporter, can be loaded in any combination. Any
type of the rounds can be manually loaded into the gun without placing them into the
automatic loader.

Gas contamination of the combat compartment during the gun firing is significantly
reduced thanks to the use of the semi-combustible cartridges as well as the empty case
removal mechanizm of the automatic loader.

Designation and characteristics of some 125mm rounds which are used in the T-90.

• 125-mm ZVBM13 rounds (with the ZBM32 "Vant" subcaliber anti-armor

projectile with a fission core), ZVBM17 (with the ZBM42 "Mango" subcaliber
anti-armor projectile with a tungsten alloy core), and ZVBM19 (with the
ZBM42M "Svinets" subcaliber anti-armor projectile with a tungsten alloy core)
are designed to engage modern tanks equipped with the combined armor by the
gun fire;
• 125-mm ZVBK16 (with the ZBK18M piercing projectiles) and ZVBK25 (with
the ZBK29M piercing projectiles) rounds are designed to engage armored targets,
blockhouses, field entrenchments, brick and reinforced-concrete buildings, and
troops by the gun fire;
• 125-mm ZVFO36 round (with the ZOF26 high-explosive fragmentation
projectile) is designed to engage armored and other small-size targets as well as
enemy low-flying helicopters by the gun fire;
• 125-mm ZUBK14 (with the 9M119 guided missile of the "Reflex" system) and
ZUBK20 (with the 9M119M guided missile of the "Reflex-M" system) rounds are
designed to engage armored and other small-size targets as well as enemy low-
flying helicopters by the gun fire.

Despite the above mentioned rounds, the T-90 ammunition includes the round with
defragmentation-shrapnel projectile equipped with the electronic remote-contact actuator.
This projectile allows increase engagement effectiveness when firing against exposed
troops as well as against combat helicopters of the enemy. It has significantly increased
equalized area of saturation effect in comparison with common high-explosive
fragmentation projectiles. The distance is set automatically according to the laser ranger
measurement data at the moment of the loading cycle. If the actuator is set in the contact
detonation mode, the projectile acts as a common high-explosive defragmentation one.

Firing the 7.62 PKT (PKTM) coaxial machine gun is carried out with the 7.62x54R
cartridges equipped with the bullets of the following types: light steel (LPS), tracer (T-
46), armor-piercing incendiary (B-32) and high-penetrating. They are fitted up into 8
belts of 250 cartridges, the belts are placed into magazine-boxes which are located in the
combat compartment of the tank.

To fire the 12.7mm NSVT-12,7 or KORD machine guns 12.7x108 cartridges with armor-
piercing incendiary (BZT) and incendiary immediate action (MDZ) bullets. They are
fitted up into 2 belts placed into magazine-boxes which are located in the AAMGS (the
first one) and on the right side of the turret (the second one). The weight of the loaded
magazine amounts approximately 25 kg.

The assault rifle cartridges are fitted out into magazines 30 pieces each and are in the
cartridge-pouches in the tank combat compartment.

The hand grenades (F-1 or RGO) are placed into the pouches located in the vehicle
combat compartment.

The signal rockets for the signal pistol are located in the pouches as well as in the tank
combat compartment.

The ZD17 aerosol screen grenades are loaded into mortars of the 902V system by 6
pieces on the both left and right sides of the turret. After loading the mortars are closed
with special rubber caps which are not removed at firing. The spare caps are located in
the container with the ZD17 grenades.

Automatic loader system

The automatic loading the rounds is provided by the electromechanical automatic loader
(AL) which is identical to that installed in T-72 tanks. The AL is designed to store the
rounds and the inventory information by types, to load the gun automatically, to collect
sabots extracted after the gun shots and to remove them from the tank. It is the
electromechanical type AL with the constant angle of loading, the carousel transporter
capacity is 22 rounds. The rounds are ramed into the firing chamber separately: the
projectile firstly and then the shell. The T-90 obtained the possibility of loading process
control in the automatic mode from the commander workplace (the "Double" mode).Fire

Fire Control System

The presence of the automatic Fire Control System (FCS), which is destined to carry out
long-range aimed firing, distinguishes the T-90 tank from its predecessors. T-90 is
equipped with the 1A45 "Irtysh" FCS which allows the gunner to carry out effective
aimed firing the gun and the coaxial machine gun, and firing the guided missiles together
with the tank guided weapon devices, in day/night conditions from a static position and in
motion. The FCS also provides the commander, in day/night conditions from a static
position and in motion, with: designation for the gunner; searching, finding and
identifying targets; aimed firing the gun and the coaxial machine gun against ground
targets in the mode of dubbed control in any tank service conditions as well as engaging
ground targets by the AAMGS firing.

The 1A45T Fire Control System of the T-90 tank includes:

• 1A42 automatic Fire Control System;

• night sight system (TO1-KO1 or TO1-PO2T);
• PNK-4SCommander’s sight-observation system
• Rear View TV system.

The automatic Fire Control System is designed for effective aimed firing the tank gun
with each type of the rounds in day/night conditions from static position and in motion
considering the range to the target, the projectile type, relative movement, the velocity
and the roll of the tank, weather and ballistic data. The system together with the
automatic block of the guided weapon system is used to control the guided projectile.

The Fire Control System provides the commander with:

• searching, finding and identifying targets in the battle field;

• target designation to the gunner;
• aimed firing the tank gun and the coaxial machine gun in the mode of dubbed
control in day/night conditions from static position and in motion.

The particular feature of T-90’s FCS is considering sight angles and side lead when firing
the coaxial machine gun in the automatic mode. The feature was absent in the FCSs’ of
T-64B and T-80B tanks.

The 1A42 FCS consists of:

• 1A43 Information-Computer Day Sight system (ICDSS);
• 2E42-4 “Zhasmin” Weapon Stabilizer;
• PT-800 Current Transformer with the RChN-3/3 Frequency and Voltage

The 1A43 information-computer day sight system comprises: the 1G46 Sight/Range-
finder and Targeting Device (SDMTD), the 1V528-1 Tank Ballistic Computer (TBC), the
1V216 Switch Block, and the sensor set for shooting conditions (roll of the gun stud axle,
wind (DVE-BS capacitance sensor), the tank velocity and the direction angle in relation
of the target). The ICDSS allows take account of the corrections during firing: the
distance variation to the target, the angle of sight and the side leads, the side component
of the wind velocity, the roll angle of the gun stud axle, ambient barometric pressure, the
barrel wear, and the projectile type. All the necessary information is input into the TBC
from the laser range-finder and the sensors automatically as well as manually by means
of potentiometers located at its front panel.

The 1G46 (SDMTD) is the main device for the tank fire control which is used by the
gunner during firing the gun, the coaxial machine gun as well as in targeting and
launching the guided missile. It represents periscope day sight/range-finder of the gunner
with two-axis independently stabilized field of view and continuous zoom factor
adjustment within the range of 2.7-12.7. Its design incorporates the optical sight, the
pulse laser range-finder, the stabilizer block, and the information block for the guided
missile targeting system.

The 1G46 SDMTD ensures targeting and two-axis stabilizing the information laser beam
field of view independently of the gun; measuring and displaying the distance to the
target and producing an electric signal corresponding to the measured or manually input
distance; measuring the displacement angles in horizontal and vertical planes between the
sighting line and the gun bore axis and producing control angle-proportional signals to
control the drives of the gun and the turret.

The Sight/Range-finder has an internal unit for the gun-sight system aligning control. The
unit allows the crew to fulfill the operation staying in the tank. This unit also increases
the aligning accuracy and reduces the operation time to 1 minute. There is also possible
in the "Control" mode to check the range-finder function, to check and adjust the
correspondence of the central sight mark with the range-finder beam.

The 1V528-1 Tank Ballistic Computer (TBC) automatically calculates sight angles and
side lead values and produces angle-proportional electric signals taking into account the
measured target distance and current conditions of firing. It represents a compact
computer which is operated by the strict program and is constructed on the basis of
digital electronics: the central processing unit, the random access memory, the read-only
memory, the search and data registers, the primary and secondary counters, commutators,
the blocks of analog memorization, the analog-digital and digital-analog converters.

When firing the guided missile the TBC produces electric commands to move the gun
and the sight field of vision on the angles of initial elevation and side lead considering the
mode of the guided missile firing and the moving target tracking speeds. The TBC also
calculates the delay time for the exceeding command cancellation taking into account the
measured target distance, its changing and current weather conditions of firing.

In contrast to the Fire Control Systems of the tanks previously produced in the USSR, the
T-90's TBC also operates as a shooting permission block, in other words, it allows to
close the shooting circuits only if horizontal and vertical deviation of the gun bore axis
are within the prescribed limits relative to the established direction.

It is stipulated in the 1V528-1 TBC to conduct automatic self-control of the corrections,

if the firing conditions deviate from the normal ones, and to display the control results.
There are four LEDs located on its control panel and the CONTROL button of the
intermal control system for this purpose. The button is designed to start the control
program, and the LEDs indicate if any correspondent parameter is deviated.

The 1V216 Switch Block is designed to correct voltages, which are produced by the
TBC, taking into account the ballistic characteristics change for the new projectile
modifications. It has three switches of the projectile modifications for the anti-armor,
piercing and high explosive fragmentation projectiles. So the 1A42 FCS allows to
consider corrections with the use of various projectile types of both modern and earlier

The 2E42-4 "Zhasmin" weapon stabilizer is designed for stabilizing and stabilized
targeting the gun and the coaxial machine gun, which are installed in the tank, in two
planes, for ensuring aimed fire from a static position and in motion with any projectile
type in real operation conditions of the tank. The stabilizer is biplanar , with an electric
machine drive in the horizontal plane and an electro-hydraulic one in the vertical plane.
The mean stabilization accuracy in the main mode amounts to 0,4 thousandths vertically
and 0,6 thousandths horizontally.

The PT-800 transformer with the RChN-3/3 Frequency and Voltage Regulator is
designed to produce alternating 3-phase 36 V 400Hz voltage to supply electric power to
the circuits and devices of the tank weapon control system. It represents a device which
transforms direct current to alternating one. Stabilization of the output voltage and
frequency is provided by the frequency and voltage regulator block.

The TO-KO1 Night Sighting System is designed to observe the battle field, to find and
identify targets, to deliver aimed fire from the tank gun with any projectile type at the
distance up to 1500 m and from the machine gun at the distance up to 800 m in night
conditions. The sighting system operates in the conditions of natural night illumination in
the passive mode, with the target illumination by the infrared spotlight of the TshU-1
"Shtora-1" system in the active mode. The TO-KO1 Sighting System includes: the TPN4-
49 sight; the correction input device; the commutating block, the spare parts set.

The TPN4-49"Buran" sight represents a monocular periscope electro-optical device. Its

principal of operation is based on partial reflection of natural or artificial illumination
from the target and its collecting by the device. At natural illumination of approximately
0.005 lx and more the sight operates in the passive mode, i.e. with the infrared spot light
switched off. In this case some part of the moonlight and starlight, which is reflected
from the target and is collected by the sight, is significantly amplified in the device by
means of the electro-optical converter (EOC), so the visible target image against the
background is created.

The operation in the active observation mode (when natural illumination is less than
0.005lx) is based on the target illumination by the spotlight infrared rays with subsequent
amplifying and converting the invisible image into the visible one. The OTShU-1-7 IR
emitters of the "Shtora-1" Electro-Optical Suppression System are used as the infrared

The latter T-90 tanks and, according to the customer's requirement, the T-90S tanks are
equipped with the Thermal Imaging System of the TO-1-PO2T "Agava-2" model instead
of the TO1-KO1 Night Sighting System.

The TO-1-PO2T "Agava-2" Thermal Imaging System provides the terrain observation
and the weapon control with the use of the thermal imaging camera (TIC). The system
stabilizes the camera field of view both in horizontal and vertical planes, that insures:

• fast preparation to the first and subsequent shots with high probability of impact;
• effective gun firing at distances up to 3000m in any shooting conditions, weather
distance meter, day/night conditions from a static position and in motion;
• dubbing all the gunner's weapon control functions by the commander when
controlling the weapon in the "Double" mode;
• precision horizontal and vertical correction calculations when firing with the
thermal imaging sight and the day sight;
• fast check of the aligning line on the index of the gun bore edge;
• indication of the FCS operation mode on the TV displays.

The TO-1-PO2T "Agava-2" tank Thermal Imaging System in common conditions allows
find targets at the distance of 6400m, classify at 4600m, and identify at 2500m.

The TO-1-PO2T system includes: Thermal Imaging Sight (TIS), two TV displays for the
commander and for the gunner, and the control block.

The TIS provides automatic tracking of the TIC sightline in the horizontal and vertical
planes following the 1G46 sightline in the "Primary" and "Double" modes and the TKN-
4S sightline in the "Double" mode on the signals of the angle sensors.

The TIS has three operation modes:

• "Primary": the FCS is controlled by the gunner;

• "Double": the FCS is controlled by the commander;
• "Aligning": in this mode the mirror is rotated on 4° to the side of the gun bore
edge; at that it is possible to align the sightline axis of the TIS relatively to the
index on the gun bore edge by means of the control panel buttons.

The TIS operation is visually controlled according to the information displayed on the top
and bottom areas of the TV displays. The following information is displayed: the
operation mode, the value of the measured distance to the target, the indication of the
permission to measure the distance and the indication of the permission to shot (There are
evaluated readiness of the FCS main systems and the following error value between the
gun and the sightline).

The TVC is controlled from the control panel located at the gunner workplace. The main
mirror stabilization system has synchronous connection with the gun position sensor, the
sensor of the horizontal following error between the 1G46 sightline, and the TKN-4S
sight sensor. The system provides the field of view stabilization and tracking the sightline
of the 1G46 Day Sight/Range-finder.

The commander TV display is installed to expand his possibilities for on-line control. It
allows him to observe both the terrain and the gunner operations and switch the turret
control on his control panel if necessary. The commander also can both carry out target
designation to the gunner and fire independently.

The TIS readiness time is not more than three minutes. It can operate in the
following conditions:

• at the ambient temperature from -50°C to +50°C;

• after short-term (4 hours) being at 60°C;
• at the air humidity of 98% and the temperature of 35°C;
• at the effect of atmospheric (rain, snow) and condensed (dew, hoar-frost)
precipitates, salt (sea) spray.

Since 2004, the serial T-90A are equipped with the "Essa" thermal imager of the "Peleng"
company (Belarus). The device uses French thermal imagine matrix and has two zooming
modes and the field of view fully synchronized with the 1G46. Since the advent of the
new thermal imager, the possibilities of day and night channels had become equal: thanks
to its integration with the primary sight it is possible to measure the distance with high
precision by the use of the full set of the ballistic computer features in night conditions,
as well as the GMs aiming.

The PNK-4S commander observation/sighting system provides: the terrain observing by

the vehicle commander: target searching/finding; target designation and fire adjustment;
effective aimed firing the gun and the coaxial machine gun in the "Double" mode from a
static position and in motion in day/night conditions; firing the AAMGS against aerial
and ground targets.
The PNK-4S consists of:
• the TKN-4S "Agat-S" device with the field of view vertical stabilizer, the
electrical block and the gyrostabilizer;
• the gun position sensor;
• the ZPU 1ETs29 control system.

The TKN-4S commander device has the single-channel and multichannel (day and night)
optical circuits.

The lighters of the OTShU-1-7 "Shtora" Electro-Optical Suppression System (EOSS) are
used in the night dubbed control mode with the TKN-4S in the active mode.

The TKN-4S "Agat-S" allows find and identify targets at the distance up to 0.7km in the
passive mode and up to 0.8 km in the active mode.

The ZPU 1ETs29 control system provides the anti-aircraft machine gun pointing in the
automatic and semi-automatic modes from the tank commander workplace.

The T-90 tanks of the latest batches are equipped with the rear view TV system. The
system is installed in domestic tanks for the first time. It is designed to observe rear
hemisphere of the tank in order both to prevent the tank from fire of light anti-tank
weapons and to provide the possibility of rear moving without the crew escaping the

The 1A45T "Irtysh" Fire Control System combined with the automatic loader provides
the T-90 tank crew with the combat fire rate up to 8 shots per minute.

Auxiliary sighting and targeting devices

Additional sighting and targeting devices of the T-90 tank include: the PZU-7 sight, the
prizm viewfinders of the crew members, and the devices for indirect and case II pointing

The PZU-7 represents a monocular periscope device. It provides aimed firing the anti-
aircraft machine gun against aerial and ground targets. The sight is connected with the
vertical pointing drive by the actuating rod. The sight control panel is fastened to the
movable commander cupola rice ring at left from the sight ocular. The control panel has
the switches for the protective glass illumination and heating as well as the handle to
control the crosshairs brightness.

To provide indirect and case II pointing fire the azimuthal pointer and the longitudinal
level are used just as in any other domestic tanks.

Auxiliary drives

The auxiliary drives can be used to point the gun and the coaxial machine gun as well as
the AAMGS in emergency operation modes. The auxiliary drives include the gun and
turret drives and the AAMGS vertical mechanical drive. The muscle power of the
commander is used for horizontal pointing the AAMGS. The pointing is carried out by
rotating the whole commander cupola with the AAMGS mounted on it.

9K119 "Reflex" Guided Weapon System

To increase the effective fire range (up to 5000m) of the tank its weapon system is
equipped with the integrated 9K119 "Reflex" Guided Weapon System (GWS). It uses the
jam-proof semi-automatic control system with TV-orientation of the missile in the laser
beam. The system allows effective firing from a static position and in motion at the
velocity up to 30 km/h against static and moving targets as well as firing against small-
sized ground targets such as reinforced concrete (pillbox)/earth-and-timber
emplacements, a tank in a trench as well as against low-speed air attackers.

The system has jam proof semi-automatic control using a beam of the optical laser
oscillator (OLO) and provides firing from a static position and in motion at the velocity
up to 30 km/h with the hit probability close to one. The time of changeover from travel
position to fire position and otherwise is not more than 3 minutes.

The system allows fire in night conditions with the use of the tank Thermal Imagine
System as well as in the emergency mode in case of the range-finder fault or(and) the
tank ballistic computer fault.

Built-in control of functions and possibility of on-line adjustment of the information

block control channel are stipulated in the Guided Weapon System. Maintenance of the
9K119 system is carried out by the C01M02 checkout vehicle in which the automatic
checkout equipment is located.

The system includes:

• the gunner laser beam control channel sighting system with the ballistic computer;
• the Automatic Control Unit;
• the Voltage Transformer;
• 3UBK14 or 3UBK20 rounds with guided missiles.

The 3UBK14 round of the Guided Weapon System consists of the 9M119M guided
missile and the 9H949 thrower.

The 9H949 thrower is designed to hold the missile in the gun bore and to boost it to the
muzzle velocity at shooting, to provide the gun back-blow and opening its breech-
mechanizm, and also close the missile starting circuits to transmit a signal to it from the
tank control equipment.

The 9M119M missile consists of the control compartment, the main engine, the warhead,
the tail compartment and the sabot. The control compartment is designed to convert
electric signals from the receiver of the position determination system, which is
connected with the tank, to the actuator system where the signals are converted into the
powered motion of the vanes. The vanes are automatically opened after the missile flyoff
from the gun barrel bore.

The main engine is designed to provide the missile commanded flight time to the target.
The missile uses solid-propellant which is ignited after the missile flyoff from the gun
barrel bore.

The armor-piercing warhead consists of the penetrating charge, which is intended to

initiate the re-active armor and the main charge which is intended to breach the main
armor and to create the after-penetration effect.

The receiver block is located in the tail compartment. The receiver receives the radiation
of the OLO and converts the optical signals into the electrical ones.

The guided missile firing is provided through the gun barrel from a static position and in
motion against static and moving targets at distances from 100 to 5000m.

Tank Protectability

The protection system installed in the T-90 protects it against most of anti-tank weapons
providing the vehicle with high ability to survive in the battle field.

The facilities include:

• The combined armor and the built-in re-active armor protecting the tank against
anti-armor subcaliber and armor-piercing projectiles, guided anti-tank missiles,
rocket-propelled grenades of anti-tank grenade launchers, self-guided and homing
submunitions of cluster airborn and artillery rounds;
• "Shtora-1" electro-optical suppression system;
• Special design measures which reduce the injury risk for the crew in case of a
mine exploding of the tank;
• Automatic quick-operating fire-prevention equipment with sensors installed in all
the tank compartments to quickly neutralize arising fire seats;
• Dazzle painting, a system of other construction and technology measures which
reduce the probability of the tank detection;
• The sealed hull and the filter fan prevent the tank from penetration of toxic,
bacteriological and radioactive substances;
• Anti-radioactive material reducing effect of nuclear radiation on the crew.

The T-90's turret armor is regarded as the semi-re-active type. The front part of the turret
has two cavities located at the angle of 55° to the longitudinal axis of the gun in which
the special armor packs of "semi-re-active" type are placed. The structure of the armor
with the reflecting plates represents an obstacle consisting of three layers: a slab, an
insertion and a thin plate. The use effect of the "reflecting" plate can reach 40%
compared with the monolithic armor of the same weight.
The modified T-90s are equipped with the welded turrets of enhanced produceability
instead of the cast ones. The armored volume was increased by 100 liters.

Increased armoring level of the new welded T-90 turret is provided by means of
synchronous applying different methods and ways of the armor strengthening. The main
ones among them are: increasing of dynamic strength of used armor materials,
development of new materials and improvement of existing constructions of armor
elements and protective fillers used, the use of additional protective re-active elements,
optimization of the whole protection system considering the abilities of anti-tank
weapons with the established weight and size limitations.

As applied to tank turrets, one of the most significant reserves for anti-projectile armor
strengthening is increasing resistance of steel armor used in tank turrets. Currently the
turret base is made of cast armor of middle hardness which is significantly inferior (by
10-15%) to the rolled armor of middle hardness.

Advantages of the turret made of rolled armor can only be put into practice when its anti-
projectile resistance and ability to survive in the joint points of the rolled armor elements
meet the requirements on the anti-projectile resistance and the ability to survive for the
whole turret, so the turret elements of the T-90 tank are made by the method ensuring that
the main metal of the mating parts overlaps fully or partially the element joints and weld
seams. Moreover, any armor wall is supported by the bottom or by the top directly or
through intermediate elements.

Built-in Re-active Armor

The "Contact-5" Built-in Re-active Armor system with the 4S22 re-active armor elements
(RAE) significantly increases anti-projectile resistance of the tank. Frontal surfaces of the
hull and the turret as well as the tank top are covered with the built-in re-active armor
more than by 50%. The BRA reduces penetrating ability of armor-piercing projectiles by
50-60% and anti-armor subcaliber ones by 20% thanks to the creation of longitudinal
power pulse which allows destabilize or destroy the shell core before its interacting with
the main armor.

The Built-in Re-active Armor has high performance and servicing characteristics

• safety if it is hit by small-arm bullets of the caliber up to 12.7mm as well as shells

of small-caliber guns up to 30mm;
• detonation is not transferred from one section to another;
• detonation does not appear under the impact by incendiary agents of the "napalm"
type and other flammable liquids;
• the temperature range from -50°C to +50°C;
• the guarantee operation life not less than 10 years;
• mounting/dismounting by the crew;
• safety at maintenance and repair including the use of gas-arc welding.

The time of mounting the re-active armor elements in the sections on the vehicle by the
crew amounts 3.5 hours.

T-90A has obtained the 4S23 re-active armor elements of the "Relikt" 3rd generation
system which have much more effectiveness against anti-armor subcaliber shells and
tandem ATGMs.

Evaluation of the T-90 armor:

Against kinetic-energy weapons:

• turret: 800-830 mm;

• hull (top frontal element) 830 mm.

Against armor-piercing weapons:

• turret: 1150-1350 mm;

• hull (top frontal element) 1350 mm.

TShU-1 «Shtora-1»Electro-Optical Suppression System

The Shtora-1 EOSS: designed to protect the tank against hit of ATGMs and to jam
systems equipped with laser range-finders/weapon guidance systems.

The system consists of the electro-optical suppression station (EOSSt), the screening
system (SS) and the control system.

The EOSSt protects the tank against ATGMs with semi-automatic guidance system of
"TOW", "HOT", "Milan", "Dragon" types. If ATGM's tracer and the EOSSt lighter are in
the ATGM coordinator's field of view simultaneously, the coordinator generates control
commands which do not correspond to the real deviation of the missile from the sighting
line that results in its miss.

The EOSSt consists of two OTShU-1-7 lighters, two modulators, and the control panel.

The Screening System is designed to jam ATGMs with laser semi-active homing head
which operates on the basis of the laser beam reflected from the target (i.e. Maverick,
Hellfire), ATGMs and artillery shells using laser target designators and range-finders as
well as to mask the tank by aerosol screens.

The SS provides: light indication of direction and sound alarm when the tank is
illuminated by lasers; automatic launching the aerosol grenade in the direction of the
illumination, which produces an aerosol cloud that masks the tank from the enemy,
reduces and partially reflects the laser beam, so the operation of the homing warheads is
disturbed, and artillery gunners work is embarrassed; launching the grenades from loaded
launchers in the manual mode (at emergency situations); built-in control of the system.

The SS includes: laser detector consisting of two high precision direction determination
heads and two rough direction determination heads; the control system consisting of the
control block and the control panel; the aerosol grenade launcher consisting of the control
panel and 12 aerosole grenade launchers.

The SS has two operation modes: automatic and semi-automatic (when the comandeer
makes the decision to lay a smoke screen). Distance of the aerosol screen laid by the
ZD17 grenade is 50-80 m, the sizes of the smoke screen laid by one grenade in 3 seconds
after launching are 15m in height and 10 m in width.

The Electro-Optical Suppression Station provides jamming by the modulated IR emission

within the wave length range of 0.7-2.5µm within the arc of ±20 degrees relative to the
barrel bore axis in the horizontal plane and 4.5 degrees in vertical.

The aerosol screen laying system responses to laser emission within 360 degrees in
azimuth and within -5…+25 degrees in vertical. The system weight is 400kg.

The TShU-1 "Shtora-1" EOSS has built-in control and self-control systems. Equipping
the T-90 tank with the Electro-Optical Suppression System provides a benefit in duels
against enemy tanks as well as significantly reduces effectiveness of enemy anti-tank

Fire-Prevention Equipment

The Fire-Prevention Equipment (FPE) of the T-90 tank is an automatic system of double
action. To extinguish flame seats there are 4 balloons with the "halon 114V2" and "halon
13V1" extinguishing mixtures. 10 optical and 5 temperature sensors (in the engine-
transmission compartment) and quick-acting balloons ensure detection of inflammation
and release of 90% extinguishants within 150 milliseconds beginning from the
inflammation moment. The system principal of operation is based on the extinguishing
action of halocarbons i.e. on the inhibitory effect which appears at placing a hydrocarbon
oxidation negative catalyst into the flame zone. The FPS can be activated in automatic
mode and manually by pressing buttons of the tank driver or commander control panels.
Moreover, the vehicle is equipped with two carbon-dioxide fire extinguishers.

Anti-mine capability

The special design reduces the risk of crew injury in case the tank is undermined. The
measures include increased rigidity of the tank bottom, equipping the control
compartment with pillars, fastening the tank driver's seat to the hull top.

To cross and to breach minefields the tank can be equipped with the attached track-width
mine plow of KMT-6M2 or KMT-8 type as well as the KMT-7 roller plow. The plows
can be mounted together with the electromagnetic protection system causing
neutralization (untimely exploding) of mines equipped with radio and magnetometric

MDW protection system

The ZETs13-1 collective protection system provides the crew protection against MDW
effects by means of sealing the tank internal volume and providing increased pressure
with the air cleared by the filter-ventilation unit (FVU). The system consists of the sensor
(GO-27 radiation and chemical monitoring device), control equipment for actuating units,
the FVU.

The ZETs13-1 system can be actuated in the automatic mode and manually.


Engine and supporting systems

The T-90 tank is equipped with the V-84MS multi-fuel 4-stroke 12-cylinder V-type high-
speed diesel with liquid cooling, direct injection, pressure charging with the driven
centrifugal compressor.

The maximal engine power (at crankshaft speed of 2000rpm) in a diesel fuel operation is
840 hp. The diesel is constructed on the basis of the V-46 engine with adopting new
design solutions. The same engine was also used in the latest modifications of T-72 tanks.

The feed system is equipped with the multi-section fuel pump connected with injectors
by the high-pressure manifolds. The fuel capacity of the system is 1600 l including two
external drums, the capacity of internal fuel tanks is 705 l.

The fuel feed system of earlier T-90s repeated the T-72 one. In the T-90A there were
measures implemented to reduce its fire risk: the fuel tanks has cellular structure and is

The air supply system uses combined two-stage air cleaner. The first stage clears the
incoming air by inertial method by means of counter-flow cyclons with tangential air
entering. The second clearing stage is taking place in oil contact wire cartridges – 3
cartridges with wire filling, two of them are saturated with oil. The dust that is collected
during clearing is removed from the dust collector by the ejector method. The air
purification effectiveness is 0.98.

The engine has the combined oiling system of pressure type with "dry case". The filling
volume of the system is 76 l, the filling capacity of oil tanks is 27 l (main), 38 l
(supplementary), and 35 l (external spare tank). The system uses the M-16IHPZ multi-
grade oil.
The liguid cooling system of the engine ensures its normal thermal operation mode in any
climate conditions. It is a closed type system with forced circulation of coolant fluid. Air
is purged through heat exchangers by the centrifugal blower. The filling volume of the
cooling system is 90 l.

To facilitate the engine start in winter conditions the tank has the preheating system
providing the oil and coolant preheating in the cooling and oiling systems. At that the
heated fluid circulates over the system and provides the engine heating, so the normal
conditions are created for easy start. The preheating system is equipped with the spray-
type heater and the coolant fluid forced circulation pump. The heater maximal fuel
consumption is 7.5 l/h.

The engine is started by the starting system. The main start is carried out by compressed
air supplied from two air balloons of 5 l capacity. Moreover, the engine can be started by
the SG-18-1S starter-generator and by combined method using air and the starter-

Charging the starting system air balloons as well as ensuring operation of some other
systems (e.g. hydro-pneumatic clearing system for viewing devices) is carried out by the
air system. It includes the AK-150SV driven piston 3-stage 2-cylinder air-cooled
compressor, the moisture/oil separator, the filter, the valve of air bleeding, and high
pressure manifolds. The operation pressure of the system is 120…160 kg/cm2.

To prevent emergency situations there are stipulated the emergency alarm system, the
low oil pressure/low oil temperature engine start blocking system, the heater start
block/shoot off system (if the coolant liquid is absent or its level is too low and if the
temperature is too high).

The system consists of: the BAS-6A emergency alarm device, the TS-6A signal board,
the PD-1T-15 pressure receiver to measure the pressure in the engine oiling system, the
P-1 thermometer receiver to measure the oil temperature in the main oil tank of the
engine, the P-1 thermometer receiver of the critical coolant temperature; the coolant fluid
level sensor.

This system facilitates the tank driver work. Control of the power unit and other tank
systems is carried out not only with the use of the control device board, but also with the
signal board of the emergency alarm system.

The T-90 tanks of later batches are equipped with the V-92C2 engine of increased power
with gas-turbine boost air charging from one turbocompressor. Its maximal power in
diesel fuel operation is 736kW (1000 hp) at the cranshaft speed of 2000 rpm.

The diesel is developed on the basis of the V-84 engine with adopting a package of new
design solutions. The construction changes do not practically impair interchangeability of
the diesel with the basis engine when it is installed in the vehicle.

The high mobility of the tank is provided by the mechanical transmission with the input
reducer, two on-board gear boxes and coaxial on-board reducers.

The input reducer provides the engine torque is transferred to the on-board gear boxes. It
is an increasing gear reducer driving the compressor and the cooling system fan.

The hydro-controlled planetary gearboxes have 7 forward gears and one reverse gear.
Rotary motion of the vehicle is carried out by kickdown switching of the decelerating
gearbox. The gearboxes are controlled by the hydraulic control drive with the mechanical
drive of the control valves. The gearbox drive is carried out by the hydraulic control and
oiling system. The total volume of the system is 57 l, the filling volume of the oil tank is
42 l. The brake drive is mechanical.


The T-90s of earlier batches fully adopted the chassis of the T-72B tank. The vehicles of
later batches were equipped with an advanced chassis. The caterpillar mover has rear
driven gears, small-chain dismountable track with the parallel rubber-metal joint which is
similar to that was installed in the T-64s and T-80s and can be equipped with shoes to
move on asphalt. This allows the tank movement on good quality roads without its
damaging. The support roller dynamic travel is 320 mm.

The tank has individual torsion suspension with hydraulic rotary shock absorbers of
increased capacity (on 1st, 2nd and 6th units).

Navigation and communication systems

The battle controlability of the T-90 tank is ensured by means of the radio-equipment set
installed: the R-163-50U radio station and the R-163UP radio receiver which provide
high effective and jam-resistant radio communication between sides. This is achieved
thanks to two independent simultaneously operated communication channels (the dual-
frequency simplex mode). The mode is realized by simultaneous transmitting and
receiving operations of the radio station and the receiver on different frequencies. The
system can be easily adjusted and controlled, all the operations are automated.

The R-163-50U is an ultra-short-band transmitting/receiving simplex phone radio station

using frequency modulation. The radio station provides connection with a station of the
same type at the distance at least 20 km when operating with 2m pin antenna, with the
noise eliminator switched on, with the absence of external interferences, in mid terrain
conditions. The radio station has 10 pre-tuned frequences and can switch them without
additional tuning. The switching is carried out by one button pressing.

The R-164UP ultra-short band FM receiver ensures receiving of telephone signal. The
reception range is 20 km at least. Similar to the radio station, it has 10 pre-tuned

The operating band of the radio station and the receiver is from 30,025 MHz to 79.95
MHz at 1kHz interval. In other words, the tank communication equipment has 49950
operation frequencies. The mean fault-free operation time is not less than 3200 hours.
Continuous operation of the tank communication equipment is not limited, including
transmit mode.

The internal communication between the crew members is provided by the R-174
Internal Communication Equipment.

The commander tank is additionally equipped with:

• the R-163-50K short-wave (SW) radio station, pin antennas, set of SW antennas
mounted onto 11m telescopic mast;
• the TNA-4-3 tank navigation equipment, the PAB-2 aiming circle.

The SW radio station is designed to provide radio communication in the command

network in the band of 2…30 MHz from a parking place and in motion. It ensures two-
way telephone/telegraph communication, receipt of ring signaling tones by hearing and in
automatic mode, receipt on the 4m rotable antenna at ranges up to 50-80 km. Number of
pre-tuned frequencies is 16.

The construction of the SW pin antenna support allows put it into inclined position. The
antenna is additionally supported in this position by a special spring fixed to the turret.
That position of the antenna transforms it to the NVIS antenna. The use of the NVIS
antenna is effective in conditions of highlands. The use of the "balanced vibrator"
antenna installed on 11m mast provides the operating distance up to 350km in the band of
2…18 MHz. The radio station also provides the following modes: dual-frequency
simplex, guard receipt with scanning pre-tuned frequencies, address call
transmitting/receiving, codegram transmitting/receiving.

The TNA-4-3 tank navigation equipment provides:

• automatic positioning of the tank;

• automatic determination of the tank direction angle;
• displaying of the tank position on a topographic map;
• automatic determination of the coordinate difference between the current tank
position and the designation point.

The PAB-2 aiming circle included into the vehicle equipment set is used to determine the
direction angle in low visibility conditions and at absence of visible reference points.

It is planned to equip all the tanks with the TNA-M "Gamma" new georeferencing and
navigation system constructed on the basis of the fiber-optical gyroscope. The equipment
is combined with the receiving/displaying equipment of the global space positioning
system (GLONASS and/or NAVSTAR). The system comprises the course indication
autopositioning system which allows determine current spatial angle coordinates, the tank
speed sensor, the sputnik positioning system, the mapboard, the coordinator with
character indicator and the course indicator. Depending on the designation level of the
commander vehicle, it can be equipped with the "Gamma-1" or "Gamma-2" equipment
which differ with their composition and data output.

Supporting systems and equipment

The T-90 has the direct current electrical equipment which is single-wired excluding the
alarm circuits. The tank electrical system voltage is 22-29 V. The start circuit voltage is
48 V under the starter operation. The accumulator batteries and the starter-generator are
the power sources of the tank electrical system.

The lead-acid starter batteries are used in the T-90 tank. It is possible to install 4
accumulators of the 12ST-85R, 6ST-140M or 6ST-140R with total capacity of 340, 280
and 280 Ah correspondingly.

The starter-generator is the SG-18-1S direct current starter-generator, protected, with

mixed excitation. It has 18 kW output at the generator mode with the voltage of 26.5–
28.5 V, and 21.3 kW output with 48V voltage in the starting mode.

The commander tanks are completed with the AB-1-P/28.5-V-U additional power supply
unit which represents an auxiliary generator driven from the carburettor engine. The
electrical equipment is designed to supply consumers of 1kW total capacity (the
communication equipment, the fire-prevention system) to recharge the accumulators, etc.
during a stop when the main engine does not operate.

The Tank Fording Equipment (TFE) provides hermetic sealing of the hull and the turret
at installing the removable equipment, 1st speed driving on the bottom of water obstacles
up to 1000m width and up to 5m depth using the directional gyroscope and radio
communication. Pumping equipment ensures water removing capacity up to 100 l/min at
backpressure of 0.4 kg/cm2. The removable equipment can be mounted/dismounted
within not more than 15 minutes. It is not required any time to prepare for firing after

Digging equipment

The T-90 has the built-in bulldozing kit to prepare firing positions. The blade width is
2148mm. The equipment allows organize a tank pit within 20-30 minutes.

The tank can be equipped with the TBS-86 tank bulldozer/snow plug for more severe
digging works.

Conditioning system
For the first time in domestic tanks the SKS-3 conditioning system is provided to ensure
effective work of the crew in the hot climate conditions and to maintain the temperature-
humidity conditions in the combat compartment of the T-90. It is designed to cool air and
to supply it to the crew workplaces. The system ensures cooling, ventilation and partial
drying of the air with its supplying to the crew compartment. Units and elements of the
system are located in the engine-transmission compartment and in the crew compartment.

The conditioning system comprises the compressor, the condenser, the receiver, the air
processing block, the moisture separator. All the units are interconnected into closed
cooling circuit by manifolds. The system also includes air ducts, the control block, the
switching block and electric cables.

The cooling capacity of the system amounts not less than 2900W at the ambient air
temperature 50°C and the relative humidity of 45%.

Technical properties

There is the following maintenance stipulated: the visual inspection by the crew. It is
carried out prior to the vehicle departure from the park, during march rests and prior to
firing. Its duration is not more than 15 minutes. The maintenance No.1 is carried out after
2500-2700 km haul as well as prior to placing on storage and at the change-over into
seasonal exploitation mode. The Maintenance No. 1 duration amounts to not more than
12 hours. The maintenance No.2 is carried out after 5000-5200 km haul as well as prior
to placing on storage (long-term in general). . The Maintenance No. 2 duration amounts
to not more than 30 hours.

Two repair types are stipulated for the T-90: the running repair and the major repair. The
running repair is carried out when a need appears. The mean time of the operability
recovering is not more than 2 hours. The major repair is carried out after every 11000 km
of the vehicle haul.

The tank exploitation is ensured by single Set of Spare Parts which is provided with
every vehicle. It includes all the necessary to maintain the tank in working condition, to
carry out the maintenance of the volume stipulated in the service documentation, as well
as to repair faults and troubles by the crew during the whole operation life of the tank.

To support operation of some tactical tank group there is the Group Set of Spare Parts
stipulated which is designed for 30 vehicles. The set comprises all the necessary to carry
out running repair and maintenance of a group of tanks of the same type in the volume
stipulated in the service documentation during the specified time.

The combat readiness of the tank stipulates its alert departure from the park within not
more than 12 minutes. The full preparation of the tank for tactical employment in the
dispersal area additionally takes not more than 30 minutes.
All the main technical characteristics of the tank are maintained during the stipulated
vehicle operation life which is prescribed, under the condition that the scheduled
maintenance is carried out, as 15 years; the stated haul of the vehicle prior to the first
major repair is 11000km (not less than 6000 for trucks and drive wheel crowns.