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2S12 MZ-304 "Highlander" 120-mm mortar

The 2S12 mortar system consists of a 120mm 2B11 mortar, 2L81 wheeled carriage, single SPTA kit for mortar and a transport vehicle. 2C12 or "sled" - Soviet towed mortar complex caliber of 120 mm, which provides transport of mortar as a transportable and towed ways. Until now, it is in service with the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation , as well as the armed forces of most CIS countries and a number of countries of the world. Developed in 1979 by the designers of the Central Research Institute "Petrel". In 1981, the complex was adopted by the Soviet Army of the Armed Forces of the USSR.

For firing from a 120 mm 2B11 mortar, high-explosive fragmentation mines of all modifications from any 120 mm mortar systems are used. In order to solve certain tactical and fire problems, smoke, lighting, incendiary and propaganda mines can be used. As standard, the 2S12A mortar complex consists of a 120-mm 2B11 mortar, 2L81 wheel drive, a single set of spare parts for the mortar and a transport vehicle.

The 2L81 wheel drive is designed to move the mortar over short distances by calculating and installing the mortar in the combat and traveling position, loading (unloading) the mortar onto the platform (in the body) of the transport vehicle, and also, if necessary, to tow the mortar behind the transport vehicle. The transport machine is designed to carry crew, mortar with wheel drive, ammunition, as well as to tow the mortar over short distances. Wheel loading of the mortar onto the transport vehicle and unloading are carried out using an electric winch in the back of the truck. This greatly facilitates the work of combat crew and reduces the time of deployment and collapse of the firing position. Due to the significant mines power, sufficient rate of fire, range and accuracy of the battle, maneuverability, the 120 mm 2C12A mortar complex is capable of efficiently and timely performing various tasks during combat operations in modern conditions. The whole system is now installed in a single vehicle, with the mortar system replacing the troops compartment at the rear of the Tigr-M. The vehicle is operated by a crew of four and can convey up to 56 rounds in the rear compartment. The 2S12 Sani mortar can fire up to 10 rounds per minut within a maximum firing range of 7 km. It can fire HE, smoke, illuminating or incendiary rounds.

Russian designers thought about the problem of creating a highly maneuverable mortar system of 120 mm caliber on a highly passable armored chassis. In the early 2000s, such an experimental system was created by the joint efforts of designers of the Central Research Institute "Burevestnik", the GAZ automobile plant and the Arzamas Engineering Plant. On the chassis of the car "Vodnik" GAZ-3937 in the aft of the special platform was installed 120-mm mortar 2B11. Later, the mortar was put on the chassis of the Vodnik armored vehicle GAZ-39371. The recoil force during the shot was received by a relatively large steel platform, from which it was transmitted to the car's suspension. Further work on this mortar complex was stopped due to the cessation of the production of Vodnik cars at the Arzamas Engineering Plant.

Designers of the Motovilikhinsky Plants (Perm) and the Military Industrial Company returned to the creation of such a mobile protected mortar system relatively recently - two years ago. By that time, the power structures of Russia and the designers of many enterprises using wheeled chassis for the installation of their products had already turned their attention to the Tiger multipurpose armored vehicles developed and manufactured by the Military Industrial Company. Each year, five or six new modifications of systems for various purposes appeared on the chassis of this armored car - from armored police vehicles to combat vehicles of the Kornet-D1 universal missile systems.

The choice of Perm designers also fell on the Tiger, namely on the modification of VPK-233136 SBM (special armored vehicle), which has a 5th class of protection according to GOST. Moreover, the information reached the designers that in hot spots our fighters, endowed with rich imagination, had already used the chassis of the Tiger cars for firing mortars: they put mortar shells in the passenger compartment and loaded through the open hatch. Fortunately, the mortar barrel rises above it. The car crouched, but the mortar men solved their tasks by firing several shots and quickly leaving the position.

At Motovilikhinskiye Zavody, the armored car was modified for the installation of a M3-204 Gorets 120mm mortar system with remote control. The system is installed at the rear of the machine and has electric guidance in elevation and azimuth. When firing on a machine, outriggers are lowered in the aft, preventing the transfer of recoil force when fired at the vehicle's suspension elements. The mortar system itself is mounted on chocks.

When firing, the calculation of the self-propelled mortar complex is located inside the Tiger armored corps. All operations for the preparation and firing of mortars are carried out without leaving the calculation of the car. Mortar loading is carried out in a semi-automatic mode. In this case, the barrel of the mortar lowers horizontally. Through a special charging window that closes with an armor shutter, the loader charges the mine (if necessary, hanging additional powder charges on it) through the muzzle of the mortar. After that, the mortar barrel automatically takes up a position for firing.

The preparation of data for firing is carried out in an automated mode, after which commands are issued to the guidance drives in the form of electrical signals for pointing the mortar at the target. Target data is sent to the self-propelled mortar complex from a higher headquarters, intelligence agencies or means (including UAVs and other systems) in the data transfer mode. The situation, data about the goals are displayed on the multifunctional LCD monitor of the calculation commander. For firing the mortar complex can use all types of 120 mm mines, including the high-precision munition "Gran", which is capable of high probability (its warhead carries 13 kg of explosives) to hit a point target at ranges up to 9 km. The range of ordinary ammunition ranges from 480 m to 7,180 m.

Currently, a 120-mm mortar complex with the working name MZ-304 "Highlander" is being tested. Practical shooting showed high prospects for the system. What positively distinguishes the Highlander from its foreign counterparts: if necessary, the mortar barrel is easily dismantled and, using the base plate and carriage available on the machine, turns into a regular 120 mm mortar. For the first time, the MZ-304 "Highlander" self-propelled mortar complex based on the SBM "Tiger" armored car was demonstrated at the closed exhibition of the Army-2016 international arms exhibition. More recently, this complex could be seen by everyone who arrived at the Scientific and Technical Forum "Day of Advanced Law Enforcement Technologies", which was held from May 25 to May 27, 2017 at the training ground of the Research Institute "Geodesy" in Krasnoarmeisk near Moscow.

Maximum firing range, m7100
Minimum firing range, m480
Angles of vertical guidance, degrees45-80
Angles of horizontal guidance, degrees: without rearrangement of two 5
- legs - with rearrangement of two-legs360
Target rate of fire, rds / minup to 15
Time of the transfer of the mortar from traveling to combat and vice versa, minno more than 3
Mortar mass, kg230
mass of the mortar with a wheel stroke of 2L81 in the stowed position, kg357
Wheel track, mm1245
Speed when towing a mortar on a wheeled drive, km / h
off-road, on dirt and cobblestone roads for short distances (5-10 km)
no more than 20
on asphalt or concrete highway, if necessary, for short distances (30 km)no more than 60
Crew, person5
Chassis Transportable ammunition, rds.56

2S12 120-mm mortar 2S12 120-mm mortar 2S12 MZ-304 2S12 MZ-304 2S12 MZ-304 2S12 MZ-304

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Page last modified: 17-10-2019 19:09:02 ZULU