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Meet rare BMP-1TS IFV deployed by Ukraine against Russian troops

According to MilitaryLand on October 10, 2023, the Ukrainian 5th Assault Brigade deployed an unspecified number of BMP-1TS infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs) on the battlefield. These deployments represent the utilization of a Ukrainian modernization effort intended to enhance the capabilities of the BMP-1 to bring its combat capabilities closer to the Russian BMP-2M Berezhok. The BMP-1TS was publicly unveiled in 2021 during a military parade in Kyiv and is a product of collaboration between the Kyiv research and production company Techimpex and the Zhytomyr Armored Plant. As of 2021, Ukraine possessed approximately a dozen BMP-1TS.
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As of 2021, Ukraine was reported to have approximately a dozen BMP-1TS IFVs (Picture source: Twitter, Wikimedia, and Techimpex)

One of the notable features of the BMP-1TS modernization is the installation of a new single-seat turret referred to as "Spis" or BM-5 turret. This turret maintains the same dimensions as the original BMP-1 turret, ensuring compatibility with the vehicle's layout. The BM-5 turret is designed as a modular system that can be fitted on various armored vehicles, including BTR-60, BTR-70, BTR-80, BMP-2, MT-LB, Varan, and M113, without the need for modification of the remote-control weapon station (RCWS).

The BMP-1TS is equipped with a diverse array of weaponry to address various combat scenarios. Its primary armament is the 30mm ZTM-1 autocannon, a Ukrainian variant of the Russian 2A72 cannon, loaded with 300 shells ready for use, serving as the main anti-personnel and light armor weapon. The turret provides circular horizontal guidance and vertical movement within a range from -5° to +45°. Additionally, it features a 30mm KBA-117 automatic grenade launcher based on the Russian 30mm AGS-17 grenade launcher, carrying a total of 116 grenades. The BMP-1TS is also equipped with the Barrier Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM) System, featuring one launcher on each side of the turret, with the capacity to carry 4 laser-beam-guided, 130mm R-2 missiles. The turret also includes a 7.62mm PKT machine gun with 2,100 cartridges and smoke grenades for cover and protection.

The BMP-1TS places a strong emphasis on crew protection and survivability. The turret features a new welded design constructed from armor plates of varying thicknesses, including an inclined frontal plate with a large embrasure, a developed aft niche, and cylindrical casings on the sides for equipment. It offers Level 3 protection in accordance with STANAG 4569 standards, meaning it can withstand hits from a 7.62mm armor-piercing rifle bullet from any angle. Small additional armor screens are also installed on the sides of the vehicle, particularly in the driver and commander locations, to enhance protection.

To enhance its observation and target acquisition capabilities, the BMP-1TS is equipped with advanced optical-electronic equipment, including the Kazhan-3K15 unit, which includes a day channel with wide and narrow fields of view, an imported uncooled thermal imager, and a laser rangefinder. These systems are designed to provide performance under various lighting and weather conditions. The gunner operator is provided with a color information display to enhance situational awareness.

Communication systems in the BMP-1TS have been modernized, replacing the outdated radio system with a Motorola DM-4601 mobile two-way radio, improving communication capabilities. The vehicle is operated by a single operator-gunner who accesses the interior through a roof hatch and is provided with periscopes for observation.

In terms of mobility, the BMP-1TS is designed to traverse various terrains, including slopes up to 30%, side slopes up to 25%, vertical obstacles up to 0.7 meters, and natural or engineered trenches with a maximum depth of 2.5 meters.

The specifications of the BMP-1TS include a weight without ammunition of 13.1 tons, a crew of three, and the capacity to transport seven infantrymen. The vehicle's dimensions are 6,735 x 3,150 x 2.26 meters, with a ground clearance of 0.7 m. It is equipped with a fire control system known as "SINTEZ" and a digital, electromechanical, two-plane weapon stabilizer named "SYNTHESIS," enhancing the accuracy and effectiveness of its armament. Additional protection features include energy-absorbing seats and hinged perforated anti-bullet protection.


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