During the Cold War, Soviet scientists andengineers solved difficult, and sometimes unimaginable tasks. One of the priority directions of the development of that time was the creation and improvement of military equipment. The accomplishments of the "Soviet years" still amaze our imagination with our power, force and article.
But not all of the developments were embodied in thelife and introduced into mass production. A sad fate befell the Soviet experienced heavy tank "Object 277". Only two models of this series were produced, and only one has survived to this day. But even on the drawings this "iron giant" makes you tremble.
Development of a new generation of heavy tanksbegan in 1955 in the Leningrad design bureau of the Kirov plant. The project was headed by the chief engineer Kotin, Joseph Yakovlevich. According to some data, all works were conducted on a competitive basis, although publicly it was not advertised anywhere.
On the account of the designer there were already a lot of militarydevelopments. These are self-propelled artillery systems based on KV-1 and ISU-152 tanks, ISU-122, SU-152, as well as the notorious heavy IS-4, PT-76 floating tank and BTR50-P armored personnel carrier. But its main achievement was the T-10, which was replaced by a new "277 Object".
From the very beginning, two types of equipment were developed - with a diesel engine and with a gas turbine power plant ("Object 278"). Both prototypes were launched from the assembly line in 1957.
Within a few months they passed the fieldtrials and appeared before the first secretary of the CPSU Central Committee Khrushchev. But he did not appreciate the new models of heavy tanks, as he was an ardent opponent of traditional fire systems. This was the reason for the termination of all developments by the 1960s.
The complex situation in the world political arena,the toughened "cold war" required engineers to create fundamentally new types of military equipment and weapons. "Object 277" - a new generation tank had to meet the special requirements put forward by the government:
The basis of the new machine was the heavy tanks T-10 andIS-7, which already had a good time to recommend themselves. Perhaps, it is this fact that caused the new copy not to satisfy Khrushchev - the country needed a fundamentally new "defender".
The basis for the construction of a heavy tank became knots andunits from IS-7 and T-10. The new car had a classic layout - the engine and the two drivers were located at the rear. The front part of the hull was completely cast, but the sides were made of bent steel plates.
Its tower "277 Object" is almost completelytook over from the basic models. It expanded in front of its part, where an optical sight-range finder was installed. In the extended aft part there was a combat post with a mechanized loading system. The composition of the ammunition included only 35 shells.
The prototype "Object 278" with a gas turbinepower plant did not differ from its diesel colleague. But to see it with our own eyes and understand, whether it really was, we are not destined - the model was not even completed.
"Object 277" favorably differed from his contemporariesavailability of tested and time-tested components and assemblies. If it were not for the whim of the first secretary, a heavy tank would become one of the most reliable and powerful representatives of military equipment. At that time, his characteristics were quite impressive:
The car was to be driven by a crew of four. Presumably, the commander, the driver-mechanic, the gunner and the loader were to enter the tank platoon.
The armor of a heavy tank met the requirementsthat time. She could easily withstand a shot at the focus of the D-25T - 122 mm gun. The defense and the cumulative missiles with a caliber of 76-122 mm, as well as the rocket-propelled grenades at that time, were not punched.
The basis of the armament of the tank was 125 mmrifled cannon M-65 with an equally sad fate than that of "Object 277". Its development began in 1955 (simultaneously with a heavy tank) under the leadership of M. Yu. Tsirulnikov in the design office of the plant number 172 - now the public company Motovilikhinskiye Zavody.
In June 1956, the first tests of new weapons were carried out. The design of the M-65 included three main elements:
To facilitate the loading process in an experiencedheavy tank "Object 277" (USSR) was equipped with mechanized combat with an electromechanical docking device. Two guiding cylinders responded to the aiming of the gun on the target. The left element played the role of a hydrostopper, while the right one played a stabilizer in the vertical plane.
The development of the gun was discontinued in 1961after the closure of the project "277 Object". A total of 10 copies of such guns were produced, and one modification was made. The revised M-65 GL gun was not significantly different and was withdrawn from production the same year.
As a power plant in a heavy tankit was planned to use one of two types of engines - the modernized diesel unit V-2 or the marine engine M-850. Designer Kotin decided to stay on the second option as the most powerful and reliable. It was manufactured at the Voroshilovsky plant in Leningrad and had an impressive capacity for those times - more than 1000 horsepower.
In the experienced heavy tanks - "Objects 277" - motorparallel to the longitudinal axis. On both sides it was surrounded by ejectors of the cooling system, and under it there were tanks with oil and diesel fuel. Behind the engine was placed transmission, represented by a planetary mechanical gearbox with 8 steps. It also has a built-in steering mechanism with hydraulic control.
On "Object 277" was used a crawlerthruster with a metal closed hinge. On the sides there were 4 supporting and 8 supporting skating rinks. Torsion suspension on the symmetrically located nodes had hydraulic shock absorbers. All this gave the car a smooth ride and high traffic.
For the first time in the history of the creation of heavy tanks in"Object 277" was installed anti-nuclear protection system. What exactly she was, is not known for certain. In addition, in the combat compartment were installed thermo-smoke devices, mechanisms for cleaning observation instruments, as well as equipment for controlling the tank under water.
The main means of communication wasradio station R-113 "Granat", designed by special order (specially for tanks) and released in 1953. It provided an uninterrupted two-way communication with walkie-talkies of the same type, or in the same frequency range.
An experienced heavy tank was realized in fairlypopular online computer game "Ground Var: Tank". "Object 277" immediately liked gamers and earned popularity for good reservation of the frontal part of the hull and the tower. Players also note the high maneuverability and speed, which is usually not expected from this class of military equipment.
In another popular multiplayer gameWorld of Tanks "Object" was not given space in the hangar. Apparently, the developers decided to concentrate their efforts on the implementation of more "non-template" heavy tanks and replaced it with "About.777 II" during the super test. However, the hope that in the future fans will be able to see "Object 277" in action, still remains.
For those who wish to study and enjoy the game onthe most accurate game copy, you should wait for the corresponding changes in the World of Tanks. The heavy tank "Object 277" in Ground War Tanks, although close to the existing prototypes, will not be able to please true connoisseurs of military equipment.