BMD-4 Airborne Infantry Fighting VehicleEstablished on the basis of the BMD-3, the BMD-4 «Bahcha» has considerably more firepower and better armor protection. The designers changed the form of an aluminum shell of Ultra aluminum armor, and the Tula armorers in addition to the 30-mm automatic gun turret available on the BMD-3, placed in a new 100-mm machine gun, which can simultaneously serve as a launcher anti-missiles (PTUR). The BMD-4 machine is said to have no analogs in the militaries of other countries. This is the only machine in the world that can be dropped with parachute. For that purpose it was made from a light dural alloy. The idea of using this equipment is sudden attacking maneuver from behind the enemy's positions. It's exterior resembles that of BMD-3 but with a number of innovations; it is also equipped with a 100-mm canon.
The BMD-4 airborne combat vehicles have been produced since 2004. In 2005 some divisions of Russia's Airborne troops were equipped with a new kind of commando's fighting machine, the BMD-4. The new BMD-4 airborne fighting vehicle (AFV) was unveiled at "IDELF-2008".
This is a tracked, armored, floating, airborne vehicle for landing with airborne personnel. The BMD-4 weighs 13,6 t and features the most powerful armament among BMD AFVs and BMP IFVs. KBP has developed the fire compartment along with FCS and armament. The Bakhcha-U fire compartment comprises the following armament: the 100 mm gun - launching unit, 30 mm automatic gun, submachine gun. The Bakhcha-U is provided with ammunition ready for automatic loading: 34 rounds with the Vishnya HE-F shells, 4 rounds with the Arkan ATGM, 500 pcs. of 30 mm rounds, 2000 cartridges for the PKT submachine gun. The Arkan is guided by the laser beam that ensures high immunity of its guidance system to countermeasures. The BMD-4 is capable of destroying modern tanks, air and ground-based targets, including lightly armored targets).
The main peculiarity of BMD-4M is that the original power unit and driving gear are changed to standard one, used for BMP-3. It helps to decrease the expenses of airborne assault vehicle servicing in the army. In 2008 Kurganmashzavod produced prototypes of upgraded airborne combat vehicles BMD-4 and carried out tests aiming the unification of BMD-4 with BMP-3 that are in the field of Russian army. The main special feature of these machines: specific power block and running gear are changed on batch ones used in BMP-3. This will allow to significantly reduce costs of service maintenance of airborne combat vehicles in the army, besides, will reduce their purchase cost within the frames of state defense order of Defense Ministry of Russia.
The crew of BMD-4M is two men, plus six paratroopers. Weight 13.5 tons The machine is equipped with 100 mm cannon, as well as 30 mm automatic cannon 2A72. As an additional weapons may be used 7.62-mm PKT machine gun, 5.45-mm RPKS-74, PTUR "Arkan", "Competition". Combat vehicle capable of landing speed on the highway - 69.4 km / h in the water - 10 km / h. ????? ???? ?? ????? 500 ??. Road range of 500 km.
The cost of creating the first test sample of this machine was 200 million rubles. In 2008 Russian Air Borne Forces (VDV) commissioned about 30 new BMD-4. According to the Commander of VDV general-lieutenant Valery EvtuhovichC VDV already had one battalion equipped with BMD-4. 30 machines more equals one more battalion. Further modernization of the machine was underway. From 2009 it is planned to begin batch production of upgraded BMD-4 for airborne forces at the Kurganmashzavod. According to the governmental rearment program to 2015, Kurganmashzavod will produce and deliver not only BMP-3 and its modifications but also new perspective vehicles.
The Tractor Plants Concern tasked the designers of SKBM and VgTZ to commonize the units of IFVs and AIFVs, which will allow a sizeable drop in the cost of production and vehicles' operating costs. Thus, the concern's leading companies, Kurganmashzavod and VgTZ, are turning into major manufacturers of Russian light military tracked vehicles. The degree of commonality is to be about 80 percent without affecting the weight of the Paras' combat vehicle that will retain its primary feature - air droppability. The program provides for improving mobility, protection, firepower and ergonomics, i.e. enhanced combat effectiveness and survivability. According to top Russian defence industry experts, the upgraded BMD-4 will benefit from sharing the best features of the BMP-3 that is among the best infantry fighting vehicles in its class.
As the previous vehicle, the modernized BMD-4 is adapted to make parachute landing from airplane of transport aviation together with the crew, and also to moving over the water and ground. The BMP-4M is to Spawn a range of derivatives for use by the Army and other uniformed services. This will both enable Kurganmashzavod and VgTZ to step up their output and expand their export capabilities. Power plant installation, running gear and the chassis control system with plants unified with systems of BMP-3 allowed to increase the following functional characteristics of modernized vehicle:
- Maneuverability: cause of increasing the average traveling speed (the power of engine is 50 h.p. more)
- Cross-country ability is better, because of the lowering specific ground pressure by the increasing of track undersurface length.
- Reliability of PPC and running gears units (road wheels, tracks).
- Volumetric capacity: the crew is increased from 7 to 8 men in the manned compartment because of the great compactness of the power plant compartment.
- Controllability is better because of the usage of chassis digital informative-processing system.
- Fire power: the fighting compartment with improved fire control system, digital control system and satellite navigation were set at the vehicle.
- Buoyancy: the rear part of the vehicle is made without space above power pack, which increases inside volume of hull and reserve vehicle buoyancy (up to 41,5%), and different on buoyancy is not more than 2... 3º.
- Ergonomy: convenient come in/out through the rear hatch for the crew, that is sitting near the bulkhead, and the possibility to leave the vehicle through the hatches on the roof (above the draught-line) without pouring water inside.
On 21 March 2008 was the premier demonstration of the modernized BMD-4 airborne assault vehicle at Kurganmashzavod's proving ground. N.F. Ershov, the headman of General Tank-Automation Command of the Ministry of Defence, V.E. Evtukhovich, the commander of airborne troops, M.G. Bolotin, the president of Concern "Tractor Plants" and O.A. Bogomolov, the governor of Kurgan region and also, the numerous journalist fraternity: the delegates from TV-channels, Internet-portals, Informative agencies, magazines and newspapers came to Kurgan for formalization with the gadget.
Before the event, thanks to which all had come, was the excursion over assembly production, which was as a prelude. Workers scrutinized the numerous guests, and the operators with their video cameras tried to film the manufacturing process. The exhibition over Kurganmashzavod ready production created an impression. Together with BMP-2, BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles was represented the up-dated technique, which already was performed, such as TM-130 transport vehicle, MKCM-800 steer-skid loader, PK-40, PK-60 loader. After it - we went to the proving ground. The great event in the new history of homemade engineering is the demonstration of modernized airborne assault vehicle, which will stay in memory of everyone, who has come there. Someone will tell about the spring sunny weather in pinery, one should admire such awesome landscape.
The other would be impressed by the grand ceremony of the representing new vehicle, when the symbolic ribbon was cut, with the firework and honor guard near BMD-4 and when they saluted to a new child of military vehicles to the accompaniment of Russian hymn. Surely, the showing firing and fast run of the mane hero under the flags of Russia and airborne troops will stay in memory of all guests. BMP-3 played not a main role, but the second one, nevertheless it was not forgotten, because exactly this vehicle was the base of modernized BMD-4.
The rework of chassis was made with maximum usage of power-plant installation units and with BMP-3 constructive elements: power pack and the systems for servicing it, control linkages, devices for pumping out water, water jet propellers of body. In general, the unification of units, plants and systems of modernized BMD-4 chassis with the same units, plants and systems of BMP-3 is 80%, but the previous weight of vehicle was saved and concerned to the lightweight category. It allows to low production expenses and exploitation expenditure. 200 million rubles were spent for realization of the project.
"For many years, Kurganmashzavod collected strong staff, intellectual potential, cause of these factors the collective of plant can successfully cope with the most difficult tasks, - said Oleg Alekseyevich Bogomolov, the governor of region. - 20 years ago, one needed five years for creating such vehicle, from designing it to testing at the proving ground. Kurganmashzavod made it during one year. I wish, that such successful appearance of the new vehicle turns into its successful future."
V.E. Evtukhovich, the commander of airborne troops started his speech from thankful words to all labour staff of our JSC, which brightly coped with the task. "A new page of airborne troops up-dated history is opened today, said he, - Modernized BMD-4 in several times dominates the previous generation of military equipment. The complex is unique because it concentrates all technological and constructional resolves. It allows providing the superiority of Russian airborne troops over our competitors in problems of fighting strength, speed, maneuverability, and the possibility to make an assault landing with parachute in the nearest decade. Thank to the governance of Russian Armed Forces, Concern "Tractor Plants", to all staff of Kurganmashzavod. I hope, that the new BMD will be in different military units of Russian airborne troops next a year.
During the briefing, V.E. Evtukhovich said that the vehicle has very high potential, which has been confirmed by military checking and by practical exploitation of fighting module at the other chassis; these have taken place at different proving grounds. All individual capacities of modernized BMD-4 were confirmed and new conceptual approaches to matters of its tactical usage were embodied. "We are planning the complex test of modernized BMD-4 in accordance with the program, which is agreed with General Tank-Automation Command of the Ministry of Defence and airborne troops in the year 2008. As the result of tests, we will take a decision about serial manufacture, which could be started next year. In accordance with the accepted "The governmental program for armament up to the year 2015 ", it is planned to reequip at 60% by airborne assault vehicle of new generation.
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