The OTR-21 Tochka-U was previously widely used in the Russian Army before being phased out of service in favour of the more capable Iskander system.

The Russian Defense Ministry said that its air defense systems intercepted two Ukrainian Tochka-U ballistic missiles near the Nikolayevsk Region. This comes as the latest of multiple Ukrainian attempts to strike Russian territory since the outbreak of hostilities between the two countries on February 24, some of which have been successful particularly in the war’s early stages.

The OTR-21 Tochka-U was previously widely used in the Russian Army before being phased out of service in favour of the more capable Iskander system, but remains operational in a number of countries most notably Ukraine and Belarus. Preceding the Russian-Ukrainian war, the system was previously used by the Syrian Arab Army in March 2021 against Turkish-backed Islamist militias to neutralise their oil extraction operations in the country’s northwestern regions bordering Turkey.

The OTR-21 is a mobile missile launch system, designed to be deployed along with other land combat units on the battlefield. The missile itself can be used for precise strikes on enemy tactical targets, such as control posts, bridges, storage facilities, troop concentrations and airfields. The fragmentation warhead can be replaced with a nuclear, biological or chemical warhead. The solid propellant makes the missile easy to maintain and deploy.

OTR-21 Tochka
OTR-21 Tochka

Tochka was developed in 1968. Production began in 1973 however the missile system was officially put into service with the Soviet Army in 1976. It was exported to a number of Warsaw Pact countries and other Soviet allies.

The Tochka can carry conventional, nuclear or chemical warheads. Maximum range of fire is 70 km. A standard missile is 6.4 m long and weights 2,000 kg. Warhead weights about 480 kg, depending on the type. The Tochka missiles that Ukraine were used against military bases and industrial installations and proved to be accurate and extremely effective. In some cases Russian air defense systems could not intercept these ballistic missiles.

Tochka has an inertial navigation system. It takes less than 20 minutes to launch the missile from traveling. Missile is erected to near vertical position, prior to launch. After launch the TEL vehicle can leave its position within 1.5 minutes. Missile is transported and launched by a BAZ-5921 6×6 mobile launcher vehicle. Vehicle is fitted with an NBC protection system and is fully amphibious.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here