MOSCOW ($1=61.03 Russian Rubles) — Russia’s state news agency TASS announced in late May that Russia’s armed forces had sent a 220mm TOS-2 thermobaric missile launcher, known as Tosochka, to Ukraine. This is the latest version of the TOC series missile system.
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TOC-2 Tosochka has increased range, as well as a range of unguided missiles, compared to its predecessor TOC-1. TOC-2 Tosochka is designed to work in narrow tactical areas, the main task is to deal with enemy armored vehicles, personnel who are located in the open on the battlefield, and those located in shelters in urban areas. TOC-2 Tosochka can be used to create smoke curtains, which give preference to armored ground vehicles, or infantry.
TOC-2 Tosochka is an integrated missile system on the chassis of the Urals-63706, which drives all wheels. Before using the Ural chassis, the Russian military integrated similar systems on the chassis of a T-72 tank, but experience in the Syrian deserts forced engineers to change that and start using the Ural chassis, which is already widely used in the Russian military.
TOC-2 is powered by a diesel engine model YaMZ-652 diesel, which provides 440 horsepower of the rocket system, a maximum speed of 100 km / h, and with a full tank of fuel travels a distance of 1000 km.
The Tosochka TOC-2 missile system is made up of 18 tubes for firing thermobaric missiles. All of them are 220 mm and can be of different lengths: 3.3 or 3.7 meters. The weight of the missiles is also different, 173 and 217 kg, respectively. No matter which of the two missiles is used, the warhead of each weighs 45 kg. The range of each missile is a maximum of 6 km, while the minimum distance to hit targets is 400 m. The full salvo duration [FSD] of the missile launcher is 10 seconds.
There are at least two types of warheads, including incendiary and thermobaric. These weapons do not use conventional ammunition. Instead, they are filled with high-temperature high-pressure explosives. They are sometimes called “vacuum bombs” because they absorb oxygen from the surrounding air, creating a powerful explosion and a large pressure wave, which can have devastating consequences.
BulgarianMilitary.com recalls that on May 27 the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine posted a video on its social profile on Twitter, claiming that Russian artillery forces have inflicted a powerful thermobaric and artillery strike in the Novomykhailivka area. Novomykhailivka is a village in Marinka Raion [district] in Donetsk Oblast of eastern Ukraine, at 39.8 km SW from the center of Donetsk city.
In its commentary on the video, the Ministry of Defense says that Russian troops used TOS-1A Solntsepyok. In the same post, the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine called on its partners to provide similar MLRS systems to respond to the Russian offensive. “This is what the largest and most horrific war of the 21st century looks like. Ukraine is ready to strike back. To do this, we need NATO-style MLRS. Immediately,” the Twitter post said.
2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
On 21 February 2022, the Russian government claimed that Ukrainian shelling had destroyed an FSB border facility on the Russia Ukraine border, and claimed that it had killed 5 Ukrainian soldiers who tried to cross into Russian territory. Ukraine denied being involved in both incidents and called them a false flag.
On the same day, the Russian government formally recognized the self-proclaimed DPR and LPR as independent states, according to Putin not only in their de-facto controlled areas, but the Ukrainian Oblasts as a whole, and Putin ordered Russian troops, including tanks, to enter the regions.
On 24 February 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an invasion of Ukraine by Russian Armed Forces previously concentrated along the border. The invasion followed by targeted airstrikes of military buildings in the country, as well as tanks entering via the Belarus border.
Russia has so far not recognized the invasion of Ukraine as a “war”, although that is exactly what it is, claiming that it is a “special military operation”. According to the UN, in which Russia has its permanent representation, for military action to be defined as a “special military operation”, it must have a resolution issued by the UN. There is no such resolution, which automatically defines the military actions of the Russians as an invasion and war against the citizens of Ukraine.
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