Military


BTR-80 [GAZ 5903] Armored Personnel Carrier

The armored personnel carrier BTR-80 is a wheeled floating vehicle, designed for employment in combat operations, carrying a crew of up to ten people. The APC-80 with four axles and eight wheels, all of them driving, has a coupled machinegun installation as its armament. The hull is equipped with loop-holes for firing from the inside. The BTR-80 is a modern, lightly armored vehicle with a diesel power plant. Although the manufacturer is normally given as the Gorky Automobile Plant, production of the BTR-70 and the later BTR-80 was undertaken in the neighbouring Arzamaz Machine-Building Plant facility. The BTR-80 is a lightly armored amphibious vehicle with a collective chemical-biological-radiological (CBR) protective system. Operated by a crew of three, the vehicle can carry a squad of seven infantry troops.

The BTR-80 8 x 8 armored personnel carrier is intended to carry personnel on the battlefield and provide close fire support. It can also carry out reconnaissance, combat support and patrol missions. It entered service with the Russian army in the late 1980's and has since been used in a number of military conflicts, including UN peacekeeping operations. The vehicle is in production and in service with the Russian army and with a number of other countries.

The BTR-80 is superior to BTR-60/70 with a larger chassis, high-angle-of- fire turret, and single more powerful diesel engine (vs gasoline). Aalthough the armament is same as BTR-60 and BTR-70, except for added smoke grenade dispensers on the back of the turret, the conical turret has been improved and the gun can elevate higher. This was a problem on BTR-60/BTR-70 when the Russians were fighting the Mujahadeen in the mountains and cities of Afganistan. The front and side firing ports have been greatly improved (square/inset, angled slightly forward. The BTR-80 also fixed the side entrance problems found in BTR-60 & BTR-70. Now the entrance consists of a two part door (upper and lower parts which open outwards). It's now big enough to load/unload cargo, and exit rapidly with full battle gear on.

Options include the Kliver turret with a 30-mm gun, 7.62-mm coax MG, thermal sights, superior day sights, and (four) Kornet ATGM launchers. While retaining the standard boat-shaped hull and sloped sides of all-welded steel armor construction, the rear deck has been reconfigured with a raised rear and square rearward-sloping engine compartment. The BTR-70's side-half doors are replaced by full side doors, and the firing ports are modified to face forward. The fully amphibious BTR-80 has night vision equipment, overpressure NBC protection system, and a central tire-pressure regulation system.

The single diesel engine gives the BTR-80 better performance and lower risk of fire compared to the twin gas engines of the BTR-70. The turret is improved relative to the BTR-60PB and BTR-70, and can be elevated to +60 degrees compared to the +30 degrees of earlier vehicles. The sighting system for the 14.5-mm KPV heavy machine gun and coaxial 7.62-mm PKT machineguns are also of improved design. Six 81-mm smoke mortars mounted on the rear of the turret can be fired from inside the vehicle.

The BTR-80 can carry seven infantry men, along with a crew of three, consisting of a commander, gunner and driver. The full side doors of the BTR-80, positioned between the second and third axles of the vehicle, consist of an upper half which opens forward and a lower half which opens down, forming a step ladder for troops entering or exiting. The upper half of the door is also fitted with a firing port. Additional forward-facing firing ports include one at the front of the vehicle for the commander, and two in the roof hatches. The firing ports are designed for AKMS/AK-74 individual weapons, apart from the front two firing ports which are designed for the 7.62-mm PK general purpose machine guns.

The fully amphibious BTR-80 is powered by a 7403 four-stroke, eight cylinder liquid cooled diesel engine, which provides 260 hp. It is capable of a maximum speed of 80 km/hour on paved road and 9 km/hour when afloat. Fuel endurance range is 600 km on roads. The BTR-80 is fitted with NBC (nuclear, biological, chemical) protection system, automatic fire-fighting system, camouflage devices, bilge pumps and a self-recovery winch.

In a debt reduction arrangement, Russia furnished Hungary 200 BTR-80 wheeled armored personnel carriers (APCs) as replacements for the thirty-year-old Hungarian-manufactured FUG APC.

VARIANTS

The following vehicles have been developed from the basic BTR-80:

  • BTR-80A: The BTR-80 has evolved into the BTR-80A. In 1993, the Tula design bureau finished development of a new turret similar to that on the German Marder APC, mounting a 30-mm 2A42 (BMP-2) automatic gun, coax 7.62-mm MG, and TNP-3 day/night sights. This vehicle is in prototype and offered for export. The drop-in gun/turret package (Modular Weapon System) is offered for export, to upgrade a wide variety of vehicles to BTR-80A standard. BTR-80A can mount K1-126 bullet-resistant tires. On the BTR-80A and BTR-80S, the standard BTR-80 turret is replaced with a modular armaments system. The BTR-80A is fitted with a 30 mm 2A72 automatic gun and 7.62 mm PKT coaxial machine gun.
  • BTR-80S: Variant includes the turret/fire control, but with 14.5-mm versus 30-mm gun. The BTR-80S is equipped with 14 mm KPVT machine gun and 7.62 mm PKT coaxial machine gun. For both these modifications, the armament system can be altered to fit customer requirements. The armament sighting system is manual. The fire control system includes a dual magnification day sight and x5.5 night sight.
  • BTR-80K: Command variant w/ added R-173, R-173P, and R-159 (portable) radios, R-174intercom, navigation aids, and an 11-m mast. The BTR-80K is intended to enable the infantry battalion commander to command sub-units and maintain communications with headquarters. It is based on the BTR-80, with the same 14.5 mm and 7.62 mm machine guns, but has a number of extra systems necessary for this mission. These include: two VHF-173 radio sets, antenna device set for UHF antenna, IFF automatic interrogator, TNA-4 navigational aid, PAB- 2M artillery periscope aiming ring, TNP-165A night vision sight, TSh-4 inter-phone headsets with GVSh-T-13 head and chest set.
  • 1V152: Artillery battalion command vehicle
  • 2S23: 120-mm self-propelled combination gun (howitzer/mortar)
  • BREM-K: Armored recovery and repair vehicle
  • RKhM-4: NBC reconnaissance vehicle
  • BMM armored ambulance vehicle
  • UNSh: Standardized expanded chassis for current variants, including Kushetka-B ACRV and BMM vehicle series.



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