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M-55S tanks donated by Slovenia are now in service with the Ukrainian army.

| 2022

According to a picture released by the Ukrainian website "MIL.IN.UA" on December 17, 2022, Valery Markus NCO (Non-Commissioned Officer) from the 47th Assault Brigade released a picture showing in the background several M-55S Main Battle Tanks donated by Slovenia to Ukraine.
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At the back of Valery Markus, you can see the M-55S main battle tanks donated by Slovenia. (Picture source Valery Markus)

We can say that the M-55S Main Battle Tanks donated by Slovenia are now in service with the Ukrainian Armed Forces and deployed with the 47th Assault Brigade. To date, no official information has been published on the deployment of M-55S tanks in the Ukrainian army.

On September 19, 2022, the Army Recognition team reported that Slovenia approved the transfer of 28 M-55S tanks in exchange of German military vehicles, and on October 29, 2022, the "Kyiv Independent" website published that the Slovenian M-55S tanks were sent to Ukraine.

In mid-1990 Slovenia launched a modernization program to upgrade its old Soviet-made T-55 MBTs to the standard locally known as the M-55S1. The first modernized T-55 of the Slovenian army was completed in 1997 and entered into service with the Slovenian army in 1999.

The design of the M-55S1 keeps the original layout of the Soviet-made T-55 but is fitted with new improvements in terms of mobility, protection, and firepower. In fact, the original 100mm D-10R rifled gun was replaced by a 105 mm L7/M68 series rifled tank gun able to fire a wide range of ammunition including High Explosive Anti-Tank - Tracer (HEAT-T), Armour Piercing Fin Stabilised Discarding Sabot - Tracer (APFSDS-T) and High Explosive Squash Head - Tracer (HESH-T).

In terms of protection, the M-55S1 has been upgraded with Explosive Reactive Armour (ERA) mounted to the frontal arc of the turret, glacis plate, and upper hull sides to increase protection against High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) attack.

To improve cross-country mobility the suspension of the M-55S1 was replaced and now each side consists of five rubber-tired road wheels, a drive sprocket at the rear, an idler at the front, and four return rollers. The new 580 mm wide track has been fitted with replaceable rubber pads and to reduce driver fatigue a hydraulic steering system has been installed. The standard V-12 water-cooled diesel developing 580 hp of the original Soviet-made T-55 was replaced by a 600 hp Diesel engine.

The M-55S has a crew of four including a driver located at the front left side of the hull and one gunner, loader, and commander in the turret. It can reach a top road speed of 50 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 500 km.

M 55S tanks donated by Slovenia are now in service with the Ukrainian army 925 002
Modernized T-55 main battle tank M-55S of the Slovenia army.

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