Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Penetration Part 10: Cold War Subcaliber

I already posted penetration intel on Soviet post-war guns, but there were a lot of holes in that table. Let's skip a few years to another upgrade to the Soviet arsenal, the 125 mm smoothbore gun, and check our numbers again.

P.P. Isakov, Theory and Design of a Tank, 1982

Parameter
Type of shell (Gun)
3BM11 (M-62)
3BM9 (D-81)
3BM15 (D-81)
Caliber, mm
122
125
Type of shell
Rotating
Fin stabilized
Shell mass, kg
7.4
5.67
5.9
Core mass, kg
2.8
-
0.26
Muzzle velocity, m/s
1575
1800
1785
Muzzle energy (kJ)
9200
9200
9400
Penetration at 2000 meters at an angle from normal of:
0 degrees
320
245
400
45 degrees
190
185
200
60 degrees
110
140
150


The M-62 blows its AP performance out of the water. However, you can see that this is an era of HEAT, as the American intelligence talked about a 460 mm penetration HEAT shell. The subcaliber ammunition of the 125 mm gun is no slouch, however. The mediocre performance of 3BM9 is due to the shell being made from high hardness steel. Once tungsten carbide ammunition is used, the penetration soars to 400 mm, more than enough to combat any tank of the era.

Via andrei-bt.

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