Russia has deployed a barrage of heavy artillery in the Donbass to break through Ukraine’s solid defenses, including 2S4 Tyulpan self-propelled mortars.
The Russian military has released a video of the 2S4 Tyulpan they used in the military operation in Ukraine. The video shows it being able to hit Ukrainian fortified positions with the help of surveillance drones.
Difference between mortar and grenade
Mortar is a type of artillery designed to fire projectiles at high-angle trajectories. This weapon is compact and can be carried by one person. They fire small bullets or can use mortar vehicles, which can be truck chassis or heavy tank wheel chassis.
Normally, the larger the mortar, the longer the effective range and the greater the explosive charge. Smaller, maneuverable mortars like the US M224 have a range of just a few kilometers, but the Tyulpan can accurately fire large projectiles at a range of 10-20km. Tyulpan uses special bullets, and has an extended range.
Accordingly, the 2S4 nearly surpasses the standard definition of a mortar – which generally means the ability to fire short-range and reach within the range of heavy guns and howitzers (which have a range of 20-30km and can firing shells weighing up to several hundred kilograms). Due to their design for long-range fire, howitzers have a lower maximum altitude than mortars, typically at 70 and 75 degrees. This trajectory will create a dangerous dead zone where the grenades will not be able to fire, leaving them vulnerable if the enemy gets too close.
How many 2S4 mortars does Russia own?
2S4 Tyulpan is considered the most powerful self-propelled mortar in the world. It has a 240mm barrel, can fire conventional explosives weighing between 130-230kg, is laser-guided, has armor-piercing capabilities, fires custom cluster munitions and tactical nuclear weapons on the battlefield, if needed. .
The system was designed and built in the late 1960s at the Uraltransmash railway and defense plant in Omsk, Siberia by veteran tank and self-propelled artillery designer Georgy Sergeevich Efimov. Efimov is also the designer of other weapons, including anti-tank artillery, self-propelled anti-aircraft artillery, and the 2S3 Akatsiya self-propelled howitzer.
More than 580 Tyulpans were produced in the period 1969 – 1988 and equipped for the Soviet army in 1972. In addition to Russia, Tyulpan is also used by the former Soviet countries. Some systems have been exported to Iraq, Libya, and Syria.
Russia is estimated to have around 390 Tyulpans in stock and 40 operational systems by 2021. The price of a Tyulpan in 1972 was 210,000 rubles, or about $240,000, at current exchange rates of $1.7 million. .
The 2S4 Tylupan uses the M-420 gun, which was a Soviet towed mortar developed shortly after World War II and mostly produced during the 1950s. Much of this weapon was phased out, although Iraq, Syria, and Ukraine are both believed to have the system in unspecified quantities in their inventory.
Tyulpan was born during the Cold War, when NATO and Warsaw Pact armies faced each other in central Europe, and was designed to aid the defense of Eastern Europe. When creating this weapon, Soviet military planners and Efimov did not think that it would one day be used in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict.
Other Russian mortar systems
During World War II, the Soviet Union became the world’s leading producer of artillery and mortars, with the legendary BM-13 and BM-31 Katyusha rocket launchers, 160mm and 280mm mortars, anti-tank guns and other artillery systems. This shows the paramount importance of these weapons in major land battles against the Nazis and their allies.
In the decades after World War II, Soviet and Russian arms manufacturers built dozens of different types of mortars, guns, howitzers, and naval guns.
Currently, the Russian army’s mortar arsenal includes 2B9 Vasilek 82mm mortars, 2B11 and 2B14 light mortars, 2S12 Sani 120mm heavy mortars, and 2S9 Nona – a BTR-D armored vehicle-mounted mortar system. can be launched from the air, specifically from the chassis position, to assist in attacks behind enemy lines.
America’s Largest Mortar
The U.S. experience in World War II and the Cold War was different, with Pentagon planners focusing more on long-range fighter and bomber systems when conducting combat operations. Attack the enemy. As a result, the Pentagon’s mortar arsenal was different from that of Russia today.
U.S. Army mortars generally consist of smaller, shorter-range, and infantry-based systems, such as the M19 light infantry support mortar, smoothbore, loader, and mortar. M252 – a British-designed mortar for long-range indirect fire with a range of up to 6km.
The US also owns more than 1,000 Israeli-designed 120mm Soltam K6 mortars. That system is capable of firing explosive shells weighing 14kg at a distance of up to 7.2km. Finally, the M224 60mm light mortar system fires 6.5-6.9kg shells and weighs about 21kg.