Self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon "Shilka".

In the first two decades after its introduction aviation has become a formidable fighting force.Of course, immediately began to appear a means to counter its destructive onslaught.Even the simplest of airplanes during World War troops could inflict significant damage to the warring parties.This was followed by Spain, Abyssinia, and many other conflicts, the past with the use of aircraft, bombs are often defenseless position or peaceful villages, without encountering resistance.However, the massive opposition of aviation began in 1939, when there was World War II.Air Defense Artillery became a separate kind of weapons.More often than not the main problem for ground troops were the enemy attack aircraft operating at low altitudes, causing precise bombing.The situation over the last seven decades has not changed.

historical background of the concept of "Shilka┬╗

Already in the late twenties of the XX century, many manufacturers of arms, anticipating increased demand, work to develop a high-velocity artillery systems, intended mainly for combating air targets.As a result, there were examples of small-caliber guns on tripods turret equipped with a circular twist mechanism.Examples include the German anti-aircraft machine guns FlaK (short for Flugzeugabwehrkanone), adopted by the Wehrmacht in 1934.They began during the five years of the war has repeatedly upgraded and produced huge numbers.Most famous were "Oerlikon", developed in Switzerland (1927) and used by all the warring parties of the Second World.Systems have shown high efficiency in the defeat of aircraft attack aircraft forced to operate at low altitude.These rapid-caliber guns typically 20 mm with varying the length of the cartridge (BB of the volume within the sleeve depends on the initial velocity, and hence maximum range).Increasing the rate of achieved using multicore systems.Thus emerged the overall concept on which further created a Soviet self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon "Shilka".

Why self-propelled anti-aircraft gun rapid-

In the 50s there was a rocketry, including anti-aircraft.Strategic bombers and reconnaissance aircraft previously felt quite confident in a strange sky, suddenly lost its inaccessibility.Of course, the development of aviation and followed the path of increasing the ceiling rate, but usually appear over the storming enemy positions became unsafe.However, they had one sure way to avoid the blow of air defense missiles, and lay it in the run-up to the extremely low altitude.At the end of the 60 anti-aircraft artillery of the USSR it was not ready to reflect hitting enemy planes flying in flat trajectory at high speed.The response time was extremely small, even a person with the fastest "boxing" reflexes could not physically have time to open fire, and the more hit the target in the sky flashed seconds.Required automation and reliable detection systems.In 1957, a secret the Council of Ministers had initiated the work on creation of rapid-ZSU.We came up with the name of: self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon "Shilka".The case for small: to design and manufacture it.

be ZSU What?

requirements for new equipment included a variety of items, among which there were many unique for our gunsmiths.Here are some of them:

- anti-aircraft guns "Shilka" should have a built-in radar to detect enemy aircraft.

- Caliber - 23 mm.It is, of course, small, but the practice of previous fighting showed that the high rate of rupture fragmentation charge may cause damage sufficient to neutralize the combat capability of the attacker's machine.

- As part of the system should be an automatic device, the algorithm generates a tracking during firing, leading to various conditions, including a stroke.Given the element base the mid XX century, not an easy task.

- Installation "Shilka" should be self-propelled, the ability to move over rough terrain better than any tank.

artillery guns from the Soviet Union of Stalin's time was the best in the world, so in all that concerned the "trunk", questions have arisen.It remained only to choose the optimal variant of the charging mechanism (the best was recognized tape).Automatic gun 23-mm caliber "Amur" ARQ-23 with an impressive "performance" in 3400 rds. / Min.It needed a forced liquid cooling (antifreeze or water), but it was worth it.A destination within a radius of 200 m to 2.5 km had little chance of surviving, hitting a crossroad sight.The trunks were provided with stabilization, control their condition was carried out by hydraulic actuators.There were four guns.

Where to put the radar antenna?

ZSU-23 "Shilka" is structured on the classical scheme to combat compartment, aft propulsion, transmission and rear of the mobile tower.Some problems have arisen with the placement of the radar antenna.Between the trunks of place it was irrational, metal parts can be emitted, and screen for the received signals.Lateral position threatened by mechanical disruption of the "saucer" of vibrations that occur when shooting.Moreover, in conditions of strong electronic warfare (exhibiting interference) has been provided with an option of manual control through the aiming sight gunner, and the design of the radiator can override overview.As a result, the antenna is collapsible, and placed it on the power pack at the rear.

motor and chassis

chassis borrowed from a light tank PT-76.It includes six road wheels on each side.Shock absorbers, torsion, caterpillars with rubber bushings, seals to protect against premature wear.

forced Engine (V6R), with a capacity of 280 liters.p., with an ejection a cooling system.Five-speed transmission, provides a range of 30 km / h (on difficult terrain) up to 50 km / h (on the highway).Cruising range without refueling - up to 450 km / h when completely filled tanks.

Installation ZU-23 is equipped with advanced air filtration system consisting of labyrinthine system partitions, as well as additional screenings exhaust gas pollution.

total vehicle weight - 21 tons, including the tower - more than 8 tons.


Electronic Engineering, which is equipped with self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon "Shilka", integrated into a single system of fire control of the PKK-2M.The structure of the complex includes radiopribornogo radar (1RL33M2, assembled on the tube element base), on-board computer (at the time it was called the creation of a sample computing devices), the system of protection against interference, duplicating optical viewfinder.

The system provides the ability to detect target (at a distance of 20 km), its automatic support (up to 15 km), the change in the carrier frequency pulses in the case of jamming (wobble), the calculation of the parameters of the fire in order to achieve a high probability of falling shells.The system can operate in five modes, including memorizing the coordinates of the object to determine its ring-aligned and firing at ground targets.

External communication is carried out by the radio station R-123M, internal - on the intercom TPU-4.

venerable age and experience of

self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon "Shilka" adopted an already Bole half a century ago.Despite such a venerable age for air weapons, four dozen states still have it in the arsenal of its armed forces.The Israeli army, in 1973, experienced the devastating effects of its aircraft to four barrels of the charger, continues to use the sixty copies, captured from Egypt, plus an additional purchased later.In addition to the republics formerly made up the Soviet Union, Soviet anti-aircraft guns are ready to use in case of war, many countries in Africa, Asia and the Arab world.Some of them have the experience of combat employment of air defense systems, and had time to do some fighting in the Middle East, and Vietnam (and not weak opponents).There are some in the armies of the former Warsaw Pact countries, and in considerable quantity.And that is typical: ZU-23 anywhere and no one calls antiques or other nickname that characterizes obsolete weapons.

Modernization and prospects

Yeah, not good old JNA "Shilka".Anti-aircraft guns went through several upgrades, aims to improve performance and increase reliability.She has learned to distinguish their planes from strangers, began to act more quickly, electronics gained new units on modern element base.The last "upgrade" was in the nineties, but then, apparently, modernization potential of this system are exhausted.In place of "Shilka" come "Tunguska" and other charger, have a much more serious possibilities.Modern combat helicopter can hit ZU-23 is not available to him the distance.What is to be done, progress ...