New Russian thermal imaging devices for tanks


New Russian thermal imaging devices for tanks

Krasnogorsky Zavod, manufacturer of the famous Zenit cameras and part of the Shvabe holding company, has developed a new sight system for tanks which can find its target in total darkness at a range of up to 4km. 

The system is unique in that it has been assembled entirely from Russian parts and is based on Orion’s 100% Russian-made matrix with one-of-a-kind 640x512 pixel resolution. 

This innovative system can only be fitted to the T-72, T-80 and T-90 tanks.

Alexander Tarasov, Krasnogorsky Zavod CEO, believes that the T-72 and T-90 have great potential for modification and export. 

“Our foreign partners have shown much interest in the T-90, and Peru recently announced plans to purchase the T-90S. Furthermore, Russia’s Ministry of Defence is actively involved in the modification of the T-72 and the T-90 tanks. We therefore believe that this product has a great future,” Tarasov told Izvestiya

He also stated that Krasnogorsky Zavod viewed the Agat-MDT as an intermediate product and that it was continuing to develop optical-mechanical systems for future tanks.

Vladimir Gutenev, first deputy chairman of the State Duma’s Committee for Industry, told Izvestiya that the creation of the Agat meant that Russian tank manufacturers would no longer have to rely on imported thermal imaging devices. 

“Up until now, the export version of the T-90 had been fitted with thermal imaging devices by Thales of France. The Agat meets the same specifications. The Shvabe holding company, which includes Krasnogorsky Zavod, is now filling a niche market for these devices. This is a huge step forward, making us competitive in the market for these rather expensive pieces of equipment,” Gutenev said. 

He added that the Russian thermal imaging device not only meant that Russian tanks would no longer need to be equipped with foreign parts, but it also meant that complete tank modernization was possible. Furthermore, Gutenev expects that there will be no decrease in demand for the T-72 and the T-90 in the next few years. 

“These tanks will be modified and sold abroad. Thanks to the Agat system they will be easier to modify without relying on foreign suppliers,” he explained. 

According to Krasnogorsky Zavod, the Agat-MDT commander’s combined target sight system with the Russian thermal imaging device will be able to detect and identify moving and non-moving enemy targets at a range of up to 4km, measure the distance to a target with its laser rangefinder and aim the shot from the tank’s cannon or gun.