From the Vault: The External Gun Turret (ARMOR Jan-Feb 1996)

With all the attention focused on the new Russian T14 Armata tank, we thought it was appropriate to post this article from the Jan-Feb 1996 issue of ARMOR on the issues involved with an external gun turret.  According to what is known so far about the Armata, it features all three crewmen seated in the hull with an unmanned turret.  The article addresses some of the advantages and disadvantages of such a layout, although it is primarily critical of the idea.  Of course, the article is almost 20 years old so the author’s concerns about crew visibility and situational awareness do not take into account the huge advances in miniaturized cameras and video devices in the past decade.

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