By Arie Egozi
Egypt intends to phase out all Russian made T-tanks and all the old US made M-60 Patton tanks and replace them with the T-90 tanks, which it intends to produce under Russian license in Egypt. Russian company Ural Automotive has recently announced plans to establish a local company in Egypt to assemble 400 Russian battle tanks of the T-90S/SK model.
The Egyptian army has four armored divisions. All the currently in-service tanks are obsolete.
The T-90S armament includes one 125mm 2A46M smoothbore gun, stabilized in two axes and fitted with a thermal sleeve. The gun tube can be replaced without dismantling inside the turret. The gun can fire a variety of ammunition, including APDS (Armour Piercing Discarding Sabot), HEAT (high-explosive anti-tank), HE-FRAG (high-explosive fragmentation), as well as shrapnel projectiles with time fuses.
The T-90S gun can also fire the 9M119 Refleks (NATO designation AT-11 Sniper) anti-tank guided missile system. The range of the missile is 100m to 4,000m and takes 11.7 seconds to reach maximum range. The system is intended to engage tanks fitted with explosive reactive armor (ERA), as well as low-flying air targets such as helicopters, at a range of up to 5km. The missile system fires either the 9M119 or 9M119M missiles, which have semi-automatic laser beam riding guidance and a hollow charge warhead. Missile weight is 23.4kg. The guns automatic loader will feed both ordnance and missiles.
The T-90 tank is protected by both conventional armour-plating and explosive reactive armor.
It is also fitted with nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) protection equipment.