Special-Purpose Weapon

Special-Purpose Weapon

Photo: Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation

The Russian Special Forces Day – a holiday of the Russian Army’s special forces soldiers – is celebrated annually on the 24th of October. Special forces soldiers often need special weapons to perform their special missions: space-saving, light-weight and powerful at the same time − capable of stopping the enemy with one shot and penetrating armor protection. Such weapons are developed by Rostec’s companies. On the Russian Special Forces (Spetsnaz) Day, read about Rostec’s solutions for the special forces units.


SR1 Gyurza pistol: a predator blow

SR1 Gyurza pistol was designed in the 1990s by Central Research and Development Institute for Precision Machine Engineering (TsNIITochMash) under the direction of designer Petr Serdyukov. The key feature of the new pistol was its ability to penetrate Class 2 personal armor. Since 1996, the Gyurza has been used by the special units of the Federal Security Service and Federal Protective Service and has been also supplied to the army and prosecution service. 

The Gyurza is attractive to the special forces soldiers by its high-intensity 9×21mm munition with augmented penetration and high stopping power. A heavy steel core bullet can penetrate a 4mm steel plate from 50m. Thus, the pistol is able to “bite” the enemy through an armor vest, a helmet or a steel door. Despite its power, the Serdyukov pistol is similar in its size and weight to its counterparts, but is designed for a 9x19mm cartridge and weighs 900g. The latest Gyurza version – SR1MP – has been manufactured since 2012.


SR.2M Veresk: Gyurza’s automatic workmate

According to the plan, the SR1 Gyurza in a new weapon system for the special forces was to be coupled initially with a submachine gun. The research and development project under the name Veresk was completed by TsNIITochMash in 1998. The submachine gun was called SR.2 and was fielded in 2000.

The powerful munition, high rate of fire, robust design and small size are the key advantages of the Veresk. The gun is designed to kill the enemy, including the enemy using Class 2 personal armor, as well as soft-skinned vehicles and personnel in them at a range up to 200m. Advanced SP10 cartridge with high stopping power and augmented penetration is the main munition of the SR.2. Since 2010, modified SR.2MP version has been commercially available and features a standard silencer and Picatinny rails.


Shak-12 automatic assault system: there is no chance for a terrorist to hide anywhere

The system has been designed by Shipunov Instrument Design Bureau (included in High-Precision Systems holding) for close-quarter combat during urban counter-terrorism operations. This includes ASh-12 assault rifle, several types of munition and various accessories to ensure tactical versatility of the system.

ASh-12 assault rifle has the original “bullpup” configuration. The layout where the firing grip is located in front of the magazine makes the gun shorter by approx. 25% without reducing the barrel length and losing the fire efficiency. The 12.7mm supersonic cartridges have high stopping power and are capable of killing the enemy with one shot, while the special armor-piercing cartridge can engage heavy armored or sheltered targets.


PPK-20 submachine gun: Kalashnikov for special forces and pilots

Vityaz-SN submachine gun manufactured in Izhevsk has been chosen as a basis for this type of gun. The gun was designed in 2004 by Viktor Kalashnikov, son of designer Mikhail Kalashnikov, for special forces units and the new PPK-20 was called after Victor Kalashnikov. The main difference of the PPK-20 from assault rifles is the use of 9x19 pistol cartridges, due to which a gas vent assembly was avoided and a simple free slide configuration was used.

The 7N21 high-pulse armor-piercing cartridge designed to engage the enemy personnel protected by body armor makes it possible to realize the gun’s full potential. Such cartridge can penetrate a 4mm steel plate from 55 meters. The weight of the PPK-20 with an empty magazine is 2.7kg, the total length is 600mm to 660mm, the length with folded stock is 475mm, i.e. the gun may be carried in a stealthy manner. The effective range is 200m, which is fair enough for special forces operations in urban environment. Such space-saving dimensions and low weight allow to include the PPK-20 in the personal survival kit of the Russian Aerospace Force pilots.