Wednesday, July 9, 2014

57mm Autocannon Turret from Russia

Russian 57mm AutoCannon Turret:

The Future Caliber or Relic from the Past?

The Franco-Russian cooperation for an IFV was recently revealed. It's an 8x8 vehicle called Atom.

One of the features that got quite a bit of attention is the 57mm main gun in the two-men turret.

The turret is called AU-220. It's been initially developed as an upgrade to the PT-76 amphibious tank to replace its 76mm main gun and old turret.

An upgraded PT-76 is shown with the 57mm AU-220 turret.

57mm Gun

The 57mm gun that's also used in Atom 8x8 is basically an Anti-Aircraft gun used in S-60 towed AA system. The gun was developed in 1950's.

In the AA configuration the gun is fed by 4 round clips. The same gun in the S60 AA mount is shown below.

The same cannon also used in ZSU-57-2 SPAAG vehicle.

The cannon uses 57x347mm semi-rimmed ammunition. The image below shows the 57mm ammunition vs the Bofors 40x365 ammunition.

The gun is recoil operated. Rate of fire is 105-120 rpm and the muzzle velocity is around 1.020 m/sec. It has a barrel length of around 4.4m.

The effective firing range against ground targets is 4km's.

AU-220 Turret

The turret is of Two Men configuration and weighs around 3.5 tons. The main armament is the 57mm rapid fire cannon.

The gun has a new automatic loading capable ammunition feed system that houses 20 ready-to-fire rounds as shown below.

The turret basket has a powered 73 round ammunition carousel that provides ammunition to the linkless feeder above.

The 57mm gun with the AP round has a penetration capability of 130mm of Steel at a range of 1.000m. I would expect the penetration would be much better for the huge 57mm caliber. 

The 35mm APFSDS round has 120mm penetration at the same range. 

This does not mean a lot at first glance, and you can think that the 57mm is still better than 35mm. 

But when you think about the 35mm round doing all this with only 22% of the mass of the 57mm, one thinks that the 57mm caliber needs new ammunition in the APFSDS type to become a serious contender in the medium caliber market.

©WarfareTechnology 2014


Anonymous said...

The Russian manufacturer has confirmed that RHA penetration is significantly in excess of 130mm; the 130mm figure appears to be a typo or reporting error that has been accepted at face value. One would expect a 57mm auto cannon to have much better performance than 130mm at 1km, simply from observing the physics of existing guns of similar dimensions (e.g. naval Bofors/BAES 57mm Mk3) and projectiles of similar weights. Given that a 40mm Dardo AP round has 1km RHA penetration above 130mm, it's safe to say the Atom's 57mm autocannon does, as well.

Warfare Technology said...

Many thanks for your comments. I think you left comments before. So I believe it's a good idea that we meet. Can you send me a message to my email address on the site?

Unknown said...

Hi there :)

I understand why you would think in that way about 57mm, but you have to understand that 30mm rounds have reached their potential some time ago, and that there is not much they can do to make it more powerful. On the other hand, if you take into consideration the sheer size difference between the two( you have to see the huge potential difference between these two rounds, because after all, 57mm is naval gun caliber. Think in terms of different charges, new tech like time mode/airburst munition( and take into consideration that A220M turret that Russians want to fit on their new IFV has 300 rounds per minute firing rate, you cant do anything else than see why is this such a game changer.. After all,Swedes are not idiots, they would not fit Bofors on their CV90 IFV if it didn't make a huge difference..
One of the main reasons why Russians are putting naval auto-cannon into their IFV is because of many complaints from their soldiers in the field about weakness of 30mm rounds penetrating reinforces building walls where insurgents/terrorists/enemies are hiding/firing at them.. They had to use tanks for that, and navigating tanks trough tight city blocks is a pain in their ass and it is not a normal environment for a standard tank.. That is why IFV exist. Now, 57mm gun very efficiently solves that problem.
I think 57mm round is an awesome thing for any future IFV crew.

Best regards from European weapon enthusiast.

hrvoje said...

compare apple to apple....Apfds with solid round!!!!!

hrvoje said...

and when 30 mm apfds penetrate 120 mm of steel , it may kill the crew or damage part of the vehicle ... 57 mm will explode and kill the crew ! That's the difference , right?

Goldmarble said...

I know this is old, and probably will not be seen, but I would like to point out some problems with the complaints levied against the 57mm's penetration capabilities.

First is, it is firing, as far as I am aware? APHE ammunition. APHE has always had, and always will have less penetration than APDS, or APFSDS ammunition. However, once it penetrates, it detonates, and has a greater lethal effect. So yes, 35mm or 40mm APFSDS ammunition may have similar or better penetrative capabilities, however where you may need several hits from such calibers to effect a "kill", this 57mm will Or two. Depending.

Secondly, is...does it need greater penetration capability than 130mm? What is this designed to combat? Other IFVs, and infantry targets. Not many other IFVs are capable of withstanding something that can punch through 130mm of steel, and no matter what you do for improved ammunition, it will never punch through the front armour of modern MBT.

What it is trading ammunition capacity, and "penetration" for, is payload capacity. Firing a 2.8kg shell, in both APHE and HE-T flavours. The AP shell has a 13g explosive filler, while the HE-T has 154-168g load. To compare to the 40mm L/70 Bofors, fired an APC-T which had no filler and weighed 0.88kg, and it's HE-T shell weighed 0.96kg carrying 103g explosive. Now, I know the 40mm Bofors has had extensive ammunition improvements over the time, including Hich Capacity HE shells with 165g of explosive filler, and Pre Fragmented HE shells with 120g of explosive.

As far as I am aware, the 57mm Russian hasn't had any ammunition developments, and is basically intended to be fed old ammunition. That doesn't however stop someone from developing modern ammunition for it. Including APFSDS if so inclined, though I see little need for it. What it could really use, is much more impressive HE ammunition, and fuzing options similar to the 3P fuzes used on the modern Bofors. I mean, compared to the 57mm Bofors, they fire similar weight shells, but the Bofors shells have between 380 and 450g of explosive filler.

Hell, you could probably make a better APHE shell these days with 150mm of pen, and a similar amount of explosive filler, maybe more. If you really wanted, you could have APFSDS for it, and probably achieve 200-240mm of penetration.....But what need is there for that? MBTs will still ignore it, and it will just be overkill to punch through most other AFVs even planned for future deployment.

Mostly though, I think they are using it because they have a ton of the 57mm S-60 cannons laying around being absolutely useless, and stockpiles of ammunition for it. So why not try to find some use for them?

Velva Block said...

it is good to readaybabg