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100-mm Anti-Tank Gun

2A29 (MT-12) "Rapira"

Rapier [English]

2A29 "Rapira" 100-mm Smoothborne Anti-Tank Gun

Entered service in 1970
Crew 7
Dimensions and weight
Total weight in combat order 3.1 t
Barrel length 63 calibers
Overall length 6 090 mm
Armament
Main gun  2A29 100-mm Smoothbore Anti-Tank Gun
Elevation range - 6 to + 20 degrees
Traverse range 54 degrees
Maximum rate of fire 10 rounds/minute
Combat load
Main gun 20 rounds
Projectile's weight 16.74 kg
Projectile's initial speed 700 - 1 540 m/s
Maximum range of fire 8.2 km
Mobility
Maximum road towing speed 60 km/h
Maximum cross-country towing speed 15 km/h
Transportability MT-LB Armored Tracked Transporter

   The 2A29 (MT-12) "Rapira" Anti-Tank gun is a further development of the 2A19 Anti-Tank Gun. It was developed in Soviet Union by Jurge city plant's No.75 Design Bureau at the end of 60-ties. Artillery unit was serially produced at the same plant since 1970.2A29 "Rapira" 100-mm Smoothborne Anti-Tank Gun in field trainings

   New anti-tank gun had the main design features of the 2A19. It has improved mount which fits better 100-mm gun requirements, than mount was similar to the D-48 85-mm Gun's carriage. New carriage distinguishes increased durability. It's chassis are completed with ZIL-150 truck wheels. Wheels have torsion suspension, fitted with hydraulic absorbers that block wheels during firing. This feature increases gun's stability and fire accuracy as well.

  A single caster wheel placed near the trail end is intended to change position in the battlefield. It was used with the 2A19 gun and remained in the new mount. In combat position it is turned upward the left mount. The MT-12 crew is covered with a winged shield angled to the rear.

   The MT-12 fire fin-stabilized, non-rotating rounds due to it's smoothbore barrel. The main reason that "Rapira" is completed with a smoothbore barrel instead of rifled was determined by lower penetration effect, lower barrel pressure and consequently lower projectile's initial speed, higher barrel durability and ability to fire from the barrel guided missiles.

   The 2A29 "Rapira" can be fed with all projectiles developed for the 2A19. Among 20 projectiles carried by a transport vehicle, 10 of them are anti-tank, 4 - high-explosion fragmentation and 6 cumulative projectiles. The "Rapira" is fitted with a new 9M117 "Kastet" 100-mm Anti-Tank Guided Missile fired from the gun as an ordinary projectile. Missile guidance system is based on a laser sight. Such system's equipment is mounted on the gun. It has a range of fire in 100 - 4 000 meters. Missile penetrates 660 mm of armor covered with explosive reactive armor packages. 

   Artillery unit's theoretical rate of fire is up to 14 rounds per minute, however practically it reaches 10 rounds and average rate of fire is approximately 4 - 6 rounds per minute. Maximum range of indirect fire is 8.2 kilometers firing a high-explosion fragmentation projectile. Effective range of direct fire is 1 kilometer firing anti--tank projectile, and 2 kilometers firing cumulative. The anti-tank projectile penetrates approximately 400 millimeters of armor at any range.2A29 "Rapira" 100-mm Anti-Tank Gun in Chechenya Anti-Terrorism Operation in 2000

    "Rapira's" standard transport vehicle is an MT-LB Armored Tracked Transporter, which transports it's crew and a part of ammunition as well. Transporter is armed with 7.62-mm PKT Machine Gun, placed in the armored turret. Maximum road towing speed is 60 km/h and cross-country - 15 km/h. Moving on snow or swamp terrain there could be used special LO-7 gun ski with ability to fire from the ski.

   Artillery unit is fitted with an infrared night sighting equipment.

   Recently there was developed an improved "Rapira's" modification - the MT-12P. It is fitted with a radiolocation sight which used in unpleasant meteorological conditions and when battlefield is covered with thick smoke.

   However today "Rapira" is considered as an out-dated artillery unit. There was developed a 2A45 "Sprut-B" 125-mm Anti-Tank Gun to replace it. The main reasons of it's retirement was disability to defeat modern main battle tanks. Military conflicts in showed that the 2A29 gun is mostly used not as an anti-tank but as an ordinary division or corpse artillery unit. However there is a fact in Iraq (in 2003) when lying in ambush Iraqi MT-12 Gun defeated two M1A1 "Abrams" Main Battle Tanks and one M2 "Bradley" Infantry Fighting Vehicle.

Advantages

   Ability to fire anti-tank guided missiles as an ordinary projectiles. High rate of fire.

Disadvantages

   Recently this artillery gun is morally out-dated due to it's uncertain penetration of the modern main battle tanks, firing with an ordinary projectiles.


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