The RPG-29 grenade launcher and its tandem projectile
In the defense industry it is always like this: someone creates a plane, and in return receives an anti-aircraft gun. Then there is an attack aircraft and destroys the ground cannon, freeing the way for the bombs. This goes on forever. The tank is well armored - nothing, there will be an armor-piercing projectile. On the armor hung an additional active defense, beating off the means of destruction, but this is not the end. Be sure to come up with something to get it all the same. The modern Russian grenade launcher just can serve as an example of such an answer to the answer. RPG-29, whose photo flashed on the screens often images of pop stars and famous film actors, became famous after several successful cases against American and Israeli tanks, famous for their resistance to armor piercing.
Cumulative projectiles and active armor
Cumulative munitions are surely burning evenvery thick armor. In the last two decades, the design idea of the creators of armored vehicles has found a way to protect the tanks from this terrible weapon. The so-called active armored protection, acting according to the paradoxical principle, was developed. When a cumulative projectile hits it, it creates a small explosion that dissipates a sharply directed jet of hot gas, which significantly reduces the effectiveness of the attack. According to all the laws of the arms race, each defense requires the means to overcome it. Since the antitank grenade launchers RPG-7 and RPG-16 were no longer able to penetrate the defense of modern tanks of the countries - probable opponents, something new was required. VS Tokarev led the design team, whose task was set concrete: to make a compact system capable of burning active armor. With the task of our engineers were scared, they created the RPG-29 "Vampire". The name to the Count Dracula does not have a relationship, rather, it corresponds to the biological species of bats that act in the dark mercilessly and imperceptibly.
The grenade launcher - it is a grenade launcher, something new init is difficult to come up with a basic device for a launch tube. The thing is in the projectile, which flies out of the RPG-29. It has a tandem scheme, that is, its combat part consists, in turn, of two parts. The first, leading, activates anti-cumulative protection, a charge whose purpose is to destroy a directed jet of plasma. After that, the armor metal is exposed, and the main part of the charge, cumulative, enters into action. Thanks to this "two in one" principle, the RPG-29 can penetrate homogeneous high-quality armor with a layer thicker than 60 cm. This remarkable grenade is called PG-29V, its caliber is 105 mm.
Of course, it's in words all so simple, but withpractical implementation of this, at first sight, simple principle, there were many technical problems that had to be solved as they were received. A double charge could explode at a time, but a delay was required, and the tests themselves presented surprises, and not always pleasant. Despite many difficulties, the RPG-29 by 1989 was ready and adopted for service by the Soviet Army.
In addition to the main and leading charges, grenadeis equipped with a reactive solid-propellant engine, which is activated by an electric igniter through an annular contact on the tail of the projectile. Its body is made of fiberglass (there is also a steel version, but a polymer one is lighter). The flight stabilization is provided by eight blades that open after the grenade leaves the trunk. There is no active part of the flight, which makes it very difficult to detect the launch point.
RPG-29 - the weapon is compact, in a transport caseoccupies quite a bit of space, just a meter long. He weighs a little, just over five kilograms and a pomegranate - another kilogram seven. You can shoot at night and in the daytime, and besides destroying armored vehicles, you can solve the problem of resistance of infantry fortifications, destroy pillboxes, bunkers and dugouts, for this there are thermobaric ammunition TBG-29V. The effective range of the aiming fire along the stationary target is half a kilometer, along the moving target - 300 meters. The length of the grenade launcher in assembled form is 1 meter 85 cm.
The calculation consists of two fighters, but experiencein Syria (against government forces) and in Iraq (against the US Army) proves that, if necessary, one person can handle, if he can carry two bags: one with PU, the other with three grenades.
The fate of a grenade launcher
Paradoxically, with all its merits inRussia has not found this powerful weapon of application. The fact is that there is no need to destroy enemy tanks on our territory, thank God, but if it had arisen, then it would be possible to solve this problem in a variety of ways. The Russian Army also has ATGMs, specialized artillery, combat helicopters, mines, and much more.
The RPG-29 grenade launcher is more suitable forconducting guerrilla-sabotage war, when enemy tanks appear on the streets of captured cities, and they need to be burned mercilessly. Delivered these weapons to two countries - Syria and Mexico, but in some mysterious way, it suddenly began to appear in completely different places.
Iraqi insurgents, who otherwiseWestern media do not call terrorists, they successfully used RPG-29 "Vampire" against "Abrams", an American tank, considered almost invulnerable. Personnel chronicles, on which the armored giant scattered to pieces after the detonation of ammunition, went around the world with comments on the unexpected use of Russian grenade launchers. Well, in the war you need to be prepared for everything. In Afghanistan, to the Stingers, for example. And in Iraq to the "Vampires".