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Profile: KMDB-Malyshev Oplot main battle tank
May 27, 2017
KMDB T-84 Oplot M main battle tank (MBT).

Profile: KMDB-Malyshev Oplot main battle tank

The Oplot main battle tank (MBT), designed by the Kharkiv Morozov Machine Building Design Bureau (KMDB) and manufactured by the Malyshev Factory in Ukraine, is a contemporary variant of the T-84, which is an upgrade of the T-80UD MBT. Thailand ordered 49 Oplot MBTs in March 2011. The tank has also reportedly elicited interest from the Pakistan Army, which bought 320 T-80UDs in 1996. The Oplot-M is an upgraded variant of the Oplot, it reportedly possesses improvements in armour and a new sight.

Armament

While based on the T-80UD/T-84’s chassis, the Oplot boasts a new all-welded turret incorporating a 125 mm KBA3 smoothbore gun with a carousel automatic shell loader.

The Oplot can carry 40 rounds for the KBA3, with 28 in the autoloader. The KBA3 can fire armour-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot (APFSDS) rounds, high-explosive fragmentation rounds (HE-FRAG), high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT) rounds and semi-active laser-homing (SALH) anti-tank guided-missiles (ATGM). The Oplot is also armed with a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun and 12.7 mm machine gun (which can be used against low-flying aircraft).

Internal Electronics

The Oplot has an integrated gun-and-fire control system (IGFCS). This comprises of a panoramic sight system with thermal imaging – it can detect and identifying targets on the ground and at low-altitude. For detecting tanks, the sight as a range of 5,500+ m through its visual channel and 8,000+ m through a thermal channel with a narrow field-of-view. The laser rangefinder has a targeting range of 400 to 5000 m. In the crew area, the Oplot has two air conditioners (one in the hull and another in the turret).

Armour & Protection

The Oplot is built using KMDB’s proprietary armour technology supported by Nozh explosive reactive armour (ERA) panels. As with other ERAs, the Nozh is designed to explode in response to ATGM and shells (including APFSDS and HEAT), providing a layer of protection ahead of the tank’s armour. The Nozh was designed for defensibility against tandem warheads as well. KMDB claims that the Nozh does not require maintenance, is safe to handle and has a shelf-life of 10 years (with field-storage life of five years and post-application life of three years).

The Oplot also benefits from a countermeasures system centering on the Varta active protection suite (APS). The Varta APS’ primary function is to interfere with the laser-riding of a SALH ATGM. The Ukrainian defence industry is also offering the Zaslon APS, which builds upon the Varta’s soft-kill capabilities with a hard-kill element using explosive charges directed at incoming projectiles.

Powerplant

The Oplot is powered by a 1,200 hp 6TD-2 diesel engine, which enables the MBT to reach a top speed of up to 70 km/h on road and 50 km/h cross-country. The Oplot-M has a range of 450 km on road and 350 km cross-country. KMDB claims that the Oplot-M can operate in temperatures of -40° to +55° Celcius.

The aforementioned details were acquired from KMDB and Ukroboronprom.

  • shehryar mughal

    can someone explain why the side skirts seem to have been made out of unrolled barrels?? and why the whole tank looks so cheap and far from being a quality product??.

    • bill

      Russian influenced products do not usually look good like Western ones however this does not men that all are below standard.

      • U

        Which is the most capable tank in Pakistan’s inventory? Al Kahlid or T80UD / future Oplot M ?

    • Superior Shakeel

      Well it is pretty cheap in terms of what modern day MBT tanks go for consider this the automotive equivalent of Cultus or Mehran in terms of vehicles in Pakistani parlance.

    • Keyser

      If you think side skirts on a tank are the thing you should be looking at then perhaps you should improve your knowledge of Tanks. If they work then they are what needs to be there.

  • John John Slade

    I thought Ukraine build new smoothbore cannon. Seriously, in military forum many people argue over Ukraine KBA-3 125 mm Cannon because it can’t shoot accurately while moving. I just hope they build new one in future.

  • Syed Arbab Shah

    Is there any chance of Pakistan /China /Turkey developing a depleted uranium armour, similar to the one incorporated into M1A1 tanks?

  • Saad Mirza Usman

    Compare Oplot-M vs T-90MS in terms of warfare technology and armour. Thankyou

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