Ukrainian servicemen from the 47th Separate Mechanized Brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces (AFU), using kamikaze drones, reportedly destroyed a Russian T-90M Proryv (“Breakthrough”) tank, which Russian President Vladimir Putin considers the most modern model in his army.

The 47th Brigade’s company of attack UAVs released a video showing Ukrainian drones attacking and setting fire to a Russian tank. This unit has already destroyed six T-90 Proryv tanks.

“All six were stopped while moving; two of them with instant detonation, two burned during repeated damage, and two failed to ignite,” the report stated.

The published video captured the first kamikaze drone hitting the engine compartment, and stopping the tank.

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“Someone from the adjacent units damaged the upper part of the turret, damaging the guidance optics," the caption to the video said.

 

After that, the turret of the tank began to rotate chaotically, indicating that the Russian troops had no way to return fire, making their tank an easier target.

Forbes previously reported that this Russian tank has a flaw its predecessors did not: even minor damage causes the turret to spin uncontrollably, rendering it incapable of further combat.

According to the report, several friendly units tried to set fire to the tank but failed. Subsequently, the pilot of the attack UAV company of the 47th Brigade aimed and launched a kamikaze drone between the turret and the hull.

Explosions Heard in Kyiv as All Russian Drones Shot Down Approaching the City
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Explosions Heard in Kyiv as All Russian Drones Shot Down Approaching the City

Reports suggested debris had fallen in the Darnytsky district of Kyiv. However, no evidence of shelling was found after an inspection by operational service units.

The footage depicted an explosion occurring after the drone struck the tank, leading to the tank catching fire near a road sign adorned with the painted flag of Ukraine.

Kyiv Post was not able to independently verify the date and location of the video, but it can be said with a high degree of probability that the moment of the Russian “Proryv” tank’s destruction was recorded on the video.

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What is known about the Russian Proryv tank

This tank features the latest version of the 125 mm gun with stabilization, complex multi-layered combined armor, and an advanced electronic complex with panoramic sights, a thermal imager, and encrypted digital communication.

Several theories have been put forward on social media about why the turret of the tank begins to spin uncontrollably when hit. One possibility is that the problem is related to the fire control system. Like other modern tanks, the T-90M gun has automatic guidance that rotates the turret to keep the gun on target.

According to this theory, damage to the optics sends a false signal to the fire control system, leading to uncontrolled turret rotation.

Another theory relates to the tank’s defensive complex. The T-90M has a laser warning receiver adapted from an earlier system, which sounds an alarm when the tank is illuminated by a homing laser, such as from a Hellfire missile. In addition to the warning, the system automatically rotates the turret so that the gun is aimed at the threat and fires special flares to confuse laser targeting.

However, since the sensors are external, any damage can cause a false signal, causing the turret to rotate.

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The exact cost of the T-90M is unknown, but one common estimate puts it at about $4.5 million. Presumably, these tanks are produced by the Russians in small quantities, perhaps only 5-10 per month.

In late January, a video of one of Russia’s best and most modern tanks being hammered by a far less powerful infantry fighting vehicle lit up social media.

The viral drone video, first published by Ukraine’s 47th Mechanized Infantry Brigade, captured a US-made M2 Bradley hitting a Russian T-90 tank at point-blank range, smashing the heavily armored Russian vehicle with dozens of 25mm high explosive rounds.

To be clear, the US-made M-2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicle is not a tank, and on paper, the Russian T-90s should have been more than a match even for two Bradleys.

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