Bumerang is a technological breakthrough, including the modern armor, near-perfect vehicle protection, and a new powerful engine.
The Russian defense industry today inherits many achievements from the Soviet era. During the Cold War years, the Soviet Army made many armored vehicles, they were very popular and are still active today in many countries around the world. The development of military history gave birth to the legendary BTR line, serving as the armoured personnel carrier.
Entering the post-Soviet period, Russian leaders, especially under President Vladimir Putin, the Russian defense industry has made great progress. Today, Bumerang is the next incarnation of BTR to serve in the modern Russian army, bringing with it the most sophisticated Russian military technologies and valuable experiences of the previous BTR generations.
With high maneuverability, good protective armor and powerful firepower, the Boomerang armored vehicle promises to be a high-performance weapon in combat for the Russian military in the future.
Shortly after the collapse of the Soviet Union, from the early 1990s of the previous century, Russia considered to replace the BTR-80 armored vehicles which gradually became obsolete.
The BTR-90 project was selected for development, however it did not meet the requirements of the Russian Army. Because there were no feasible options, Russia developed BTR-82, an upgraded version of BTR-80 as a stop-gap measure to wait for better alternatives.
In mid-2011, the Russian Ministry of Defense issued a request for a new modular wheeled family of armored vehicles to gradually replace the older BTR generations. The Bumerang program was born alongside the new and similarly armed and armored but tracked Kurganets-25 infantry fighting vehicle and heavy T-15 Armata IFV.
The Bumerang first appeared in public during rehearsals for the 2015 Moscow Victory Day parade. The Bumerang program is still under development and in the next few years will equip the Russian Federation armed forces. At least 2,000 Bumerang vehicles will replace BTR-80 and BTR-82 in Russian service.
According to Alexander Krasovitsky, VPK plant manager, Bumerang is a technological breakthrough, including the modern armor, near-perfect vehicle protection, and a new powerful engine. Mr. Krasovitsky said that the Bumerang is a perfect battlefield taxi, a modern vehicle, but it is cheaper than the similar products such as Patria of Finland or Stryker of the United States.
Bumerang’s design is completely new compared to previous Russian armored vehicles, it is somewhat more similar to Western design. Some of Bumerang’s components and subsystems are interchangeable with the Kurganets family of tracked armored vehicles.
The overall design is an 8×8 wheeled configuration with the power pack at the front, driver front left, the turret in the middle, and the troop’s compartment at the rear. Eight large, run-flat, height adjustable road wheels, four being fitted to a hull side.
Previously armored vehicles of Russia, despite being highly appreciated for firepower, were criticized for their poor protection, especially the design of the hatch on the roof and on the side which was very vulnerable. Overcoming this drawback, the Boomerang has a large rear door design, which helps both protect the soldiers best and at the same time help them maneuver easily.
The vehicle uses V-shaped technology for the hull, that protects occupants by deflecting mine blasts anywhere under the vehicle. The Bumerang can carry a total of 10 soldiers, including driver, commander, gunner and 7 infantrymen. Over the top of the hull at the rear of the turret are two roof hatches, one each side, which are manually hinged and can be locked vertically to protect the troops when they are outside.
The Bumerang hull provides protection against firing of small arms and shell splinters. In addition to this, Bumerang is also equipped with bolt-on ceramic armor which offers all-around protection against 14.5 mm, armor-piercing ammunition, and artillery fragments from 152 mm rounds.
This vehicle is fitted with NBC protection and automatic fire suppression systems. It has been reported that the Bumerang can be fitted with active protection system.
At the heart of Bumerang is the UTD-32TR turbocharged diesel engine delivering 510 horsepower. The vehicle is driven by all 8 wheels, fully-amphibious, two propellers are mounted at the rear of the hull.
The vehicle can reach a maximum speed of 100km/h, the operating range reaches 500km.
Like all modern combat vehicles, Boomerang’s standard equipment include air conditioning, night-vision equipment, computerized fire control, and central tyre pressure regulation system. The Bumerang is fitted with video cameras to provide the troops a full 360 degree view all-around from inside the vehicle.
Currently, Bumerang has been developed into two versions, K-16 and K-17. The K-16 armored personnel carrier, lightly armed with a 12.7 mm machine gun in a small remote turret.
The K-17 infantry fighting vehicle, heavily armed with a 30 mm cannon and two launchers of anti-tank guided missile Kornet-EM are mounted on each side of the turret. A 7.62mm coaxial PKT machine gun is mounted to the left side of the main armament.
Similar to America’s Strykers, other vehicle platform variations will fulfill different roles in addition to armored transport, including as an armored ambulance, command post vehicle, reconnaissance vehicle, anti-tank missile carrier, air defense missile launcher, fire support vehicle, and mortar carrier.
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