Monday, January 2, 2017

Syrian T-55 Upgrades : North Korean FCS

One of the mysteries of the SAA's arsenal are the soviet T-55 tanks that have been upgraded with North Korean equipment. Today, we brought you an exclusive close look at the details of these old yet stubborn and reckless metal beasts.
The most visually distinctive factor of this version of Syrian t-55s is of course the famous laser rangefinder situated above the barrel's base, for most people, this was the only known added device.
A closer look at the rabbit's hole, however, shows that there is a whole new fire control system added.
On the outside, the only visible part besides the 4km rangefinder is the sensor complex, which includes a barometer, a hygrometer, and a thermometer.
On the inside, a new ballistic computer is added, below is a picture of the control panel, which allows the gunner to add additional info like ammunition type/make, and wind speed and direction. The ballistic computer makes the calculations automatically based on the measurements it receives from the meters and the rangefinder.
The computer updates the output on the periscope. The periscope has also been modified for this purpose. The whole process is automatic and requires no human input other than the optional wind measurements ,with the ability to input in case any sensor was damaged . 

The computer also has a digital screen which shows the environment measurements and the range to the target.

 The last addition is panel that is used to control and synchronize the rangefinder.

Although this upgrade focus was the fire controls system, some t-55 that were fitted with this system were also fitted with a KPV 14.5 HMG, and smoke screen launchers.

But that is not all, although some parts were initial designed and manufactured in the PRK, the pictures we got shows all control panels are labeled in Arabian. That is due to the fact that the system as a whole, was also developed by the Syrian Military Research Center ,and with technology provided by the Korean part.

The upgrade is not new, and it is obviously not comparable to its modern counterparts. But the fact that Syrians were able to fetch this development despite the technological blockage that Russian arms industry practices shows how much they are determined to developing and manufacturing heir own systems based on their study of the Korean (maybe Ukrainian, and/or Italian?) fire control systems they received .
special thanks to my friend Kane 


  1. Nice article! any additional info about the year of design or the capabilities of the system?!

  2. Excellent info and details, much appreciated.