Recent online documents point to Ukraine’s uncertain future in its conflict with Russia, as both sides resort to using T-62 tanks, an old and obsolete military machine.
T-62: an outdated weapon of war
In March, the UK Ministry of Defense reported that Russia has been deploying T-62 tanks over 60 years old in response to armored vehicle losses in Ukraine. The possibility is that even the Russian 1st Guards Tank Army, its main tank force, will use T-62s to make up for losses.
This represents a worrying situation for Moscow’s forces, which, instead of using more modern technology such as T-14 tanks, are turning to older, second-hand equipment.
The Kremlin has attempted to upgrade these vehicles at facilities located in the Russian Far East, but even the upgraded T-62s probably won’t be able to compete with modern Western tanks such as the British Challenger 2 or German Leopard 2.
T-62 tanks history and specification
In the early 1960s, the T-62 was introduced as a Soviet-era main battle tank. It was created as a replacement for the T-55 tank and was intended to be more effective on the battlefield by incorporating new technology and combat features.
The introduction of the 115mm smoothbore gun was one of the most significant enhancements made to the T-62 compared to its predecessor. This weapon was designed to be more accurate and potent than the T-55’s 100mm rifled gun, and it could also fire guided missiles.
The T-62 was also outfitted with a more sophisticated fire control system that included a rangefinder and a ballistic computer. This system enabled the tank crew to accurately target and engage enemy tanks at greater distances, enhancing the T-62’s combat efficacy.
Another significant characteristic of the T-62 was its armor protection. The tank’s composite armor, comprised of layers of steel and other materials, offered superior protection against hostile fire. Additionally, the T-62 was designed with sloped armor, increasing its resistance to kinetic and chemical energy projectiles.
Despite these enhancements, the T-62 was not devoid of flaws. It was heavier and more complex than the T-55, which increased production and maintenance costs. In addition to being less maneuverable and having a larger silhouette, the tank was less difficult to detect and target on the battlefield.
During the Cold War, the T-62 participated in multiple conflicts, including the Vietnam War and Arab-Israeli conflicts. It was also exported to Iraq, Syria, and Egypt, among other nations.
In conclusion, the T-62 represented a significant advancement in Soviet tank technology and was intended to enhance its combat effectiveness by incorporating new features and capabilities. Despite its drawbacks, it was a formidable weapon on the battlefield that saw action in several Cold War-era conflicts.
Russia and Ukraine: a confrontation with outdated weapons
The Ukrainian army, which has captured hundreds of Russian tanks so far, has decided not to return the recovered T-62 to combat, aware that this vehicle has become obsolete and poses a risk to its crews.
Instead, Ukrainian engineers are working on transforming an old Russian T-62 into a vehicle that can be used to recover other tanks with greater battlefield potential.
An uncertain future for Ukraine
The documents leaked online suggest a bleak picture for Kyiv in its fight against Russia, although it is important to note that this is a single assessment based on imprecise information.
The report in question appears to have been written before Russia resorted to deploying T-62 tanks to Ukraine, which could affect its accuracy and relevance to the current situation.
An evolving conflict
Despite the challenges posed by the use of outdated technology, Russia and Ukraine remain locked in a conflict that has seen the appearance of T-62 tanks on both sides. These vehicles, though dated, are still an active part of the ongoing confrontation.
The use of T-62 tanks by both Russia and Ukraine highlights the plight facing both countries in their ongoing conflict.
As obsolete and disused military vehicles continue to be used, the future of the confrontation in the region remains uncertain and worrying.
Despite technological limitations, these vehicles continue to play a role in the course of the conflict, suggesting that the fighting is still far from reaching a peaceful and lasting resolution.