TOS-1 Buratino/TOS-1A Solntsepyok
|Type||Multiple rocket launcher|
|Place of origin||Soviet Union|
|Used by||Soviet Union (historically), Russia, Azerbaijan, Armenia|
Second Chechen War
Iraqi Civil War (2014–2017)
Syrian Civil War
War in Donbas
2020 Nagorno-Karabakh conflict
|Designer||Omsk Transmash Design Bureau|
|Mass||45.3 t (100,000 lb)|
|Length||9.5 m (31 ft 2 in)|
|Width||3.6 m (11 ft 10 in)|
|Height||2.22 m (7 ft 3 in)|
|Caliber||220 mm (8.7 in)|
|Rate of fire||30 rounds/15 s|
|Effective firing range||500–3,500 m (TOS-1)|
6,000 m (TOS-1A)
840 hp (630 kW)
|550 km (340 mi)|
|Maximum speed||60 km/h (37 mph)|
TOS-1 (Russian: тяжёлая огнемётная система [ТОС-1], Heavy Flamethrower System) is a Soviet 220 mm 30-barrel (original system, Object 634 or TOS-1M) or 24-barrel (Object 634B or TOS-1A) multiple rocket launcher and thermobaric weapon mounted on a T-72 tank chassis. TOS-1 was designed to attack enemy fortified positions and lightly armoured vehicles and transports, in open terrain in particular. First combat tests took place in 1988 and 1989 in the Panjshir Valley during the Soviet–Afghan War. The TOS-1 was shown for the first time in public in 1999 in Omsk.
TOS-1 is not assigned to the artillery units of the Russian Armed Forces but is found in Russian NBC Protection Troops (Russian: Войскa радиационной, химической и биологической защиты (Войска РХБ защиты)). That is why it does not have a GRAU index but rather an RKhBZ index—МO.1.01.00.
The idea of a heavy short-range MLRS to launch rockets equipped with incendiary and thermobaric warheads arose in the late 1970s. The combat system consisting of the combat vehicle, rockets, and loading vehicle was developed in early 1980s at KBTM in Omsk and was named TOS-1, remaining a secret development for a long time.
The TOS-1 Buratino is intended to engage military personnel, equipment, and buildings, including fortified constructions. The nickname "Buratino" originates with the name of the hero of a Russian retelling of the Pinocchio tale (by Alexey Tolstoy), given the perception of the big "nose" of the launcher. The combat vehicle acts within the combat order of infantry and tanks. The large mass of the launcher and the need for a high-level of protection [due to the relatively short range of 3,500 m (11,500 ft)] helped determine the use of the chassis of the T-72 main battle tank. The TZM reloading vehicle was built on the chassis of a KrAZ-255B cross-country truck and equipped with a crane for loading/unloading of the launcher. Production of KrAZ-255B has officially stopped in 1994. Therefore TZM-T for later Soltsepyok was created based on the chassis of a T-72 variation T-72A.
In 2003, the improved TOS-1A system Solntsepyok entered service with the range extended to 6 kilometers and a better ballistic computer.
In March 2020, Russia introduced a new rocket for the TOS-1A with a range of 10 km, achieved in part by weight and size reductions of a new fuel air explosive mixture in the warhead, while also increasing its power. Minimum range is extended from 400 m to 1.6 km, so the shorter-range M0.1.01.04M rocket will be retained for close combat environments. In 2018, Russian NBC Protection Troops received 30 TOS-1A Solntsepyok (Sunburn) 220 mm multiple rocket launchers.
Saudi Arabian Military Industries signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Rosoboronexport for the local production of the TOS-1A. The new TOS-2 system was first used during the Kavkaz-2020 drills in September 2020. It is based on an Ural all-terrain vehicle. It is also equipped with a more powerful TBS-M3 rocket and its own crane and it has an increased range. It is protected from precision weapons.
TOS-1s were first used in combat in Afghanistan's Panjshir valley by the Soviet Union during the Soviet–Afghan War. Later, they were used during the Second Chechen War, prominently by the Russian Army during the Battle of Grozny in 1999.
TOS-1As were first used in combat in Iraq by the Iraqi Army in the recapture of Jurf Al Sakhar on October 24, 2014 from ISIL forces. The Iraqi Army launched at least three TOS-1 rockets on 18 June 2017 during the first day of an offensive to recapture the Old City of Mosul, Iraq, from the Islamic State, targeting school buildings held by Islamic State forces and known to be devoid of civilians.
The TOS-1 was used in Syria on October 10, 2015 by Syrian Army forces against rebel forces in Hama. In 2016 it was used against rebel forces in the Latakia mountains. It was used again by the Syrian Army in April 2017 in the area of Palmyra, and later in the same month to destroy an ISIS camp. In November 2018, the system was deployed by the SAA against ISIS in Al-Safa region.
It took part in the large-scale Russian-Belarussian exercise Zapad in September 2021.
At NPO Splav, work is underway to manufacture a prototype of a new generation of the system for preliminary tests. The system with improved tactical and technical characteristics will be made on a wheeled chassis. It is planned to complete state tests by the end of 2021, after which a decision will be made on putting it into service.
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