T-80BV’s cope cage saved tank crew after being hit by an FPV drone

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A Soviet-made T-80BV tank took a hit from an FPV drone and suffered no damage. The reason for this is that the drone was aimed at the turret of the tank, but it was protected by the already popular in Ukraine ‘cope cages’. Sources claim that the tank is part of the Russian army.

Video from another drone captured the moment of impact. The drone can be seen falling at an almost 75-degree angle directly onto the turret of the tank. A blow follows, and it appears that no small part of the tank’s cope cage is damaged. But the tank has no damage.

After the impact, the observer drone continues to monitor what happens to the tank. The attacked T-80BV tank continues to move at the same speed as before the impact. Towards the end of the video, the silhouette of one of the tank crew is seen emerging from the turret, apparently to assess the damage from the attack.

Video screenshot

The cope cage

The first appearance of a tank with a cope cage on its turret caused quite a lot of funny comments from various “analysts”. In fact, the first such tank was seen before the start of the war, and BulgarianMilitary.com wrote about this case.

Gradually, however, the cope cage proves its effectiveness, no matter how ugly it sits above the tank. BulgarianMilitary.com wrote about a case in which a net over a self-propelled howitzer caught the deadly Lancet drone. There is also another case in which Ukrainian artillery was protected by a “natural cope cage”, i.e. the lancet became entangled in the branches of a tree.

Video screenshot

It should be recalled that the Ukrainian army integrated some homemade cope cages on Leopard and Challenger 2 tanks, which proves that if it was not effective, they would not do it. Also, the appearance of cope cages is not a precedent, but a practice of the past.

The latest evidence that a cope cage can protect the life of an armored vehicle crew from an FPV drone attack is the fact that in the conflict that broke out in the Gaza Strip, Israeli armored fighting vehicles and tanks also have integrated cope cages.

2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine

On February 21, 2022, Russia stated that its border facility was attacked by Ukrainian forces, resulting in the deaths of five Ukrainian fighters. However, Ukraine quickly dismissed these allegations, labeling them as ‘false flags’

In a notable move on the same day, Russia announced it officially recognized the self-proclaimed areas of DPR and LPR. Interestingly, according to Russian President Putin, this recognition covered all the Ukrainian regions. Following this declaration, Putin sent a battalion of Russia’s military forces, tanks included, into these areas. 

Fast forward to February 24, 2022, global headlines were dominated by a significant incident. Putin commanded a forceful military assault on Ukraine. Led by Russia’s impressive Armed Forces positioned at the Ukrainian border, this assault wasn’t spontaneous but a premeditated action. Despite the circumstances resembling a war, the Russian government refrains from using this term. They’d rather refer to it as a “special military operation”.

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