The personnel of the artillery formation of the Russian Central Military District’s stationed in Yurginsky range, Siberia accomplished fire assignments during tactical drills to strike the targets that simulated the notional enemy’s armored hardware and manpower at a maximum distance of up to 2,000 meters. The fire was delivered from 2S19 Msta-S 152mm self-propelled howitzer and 2S7 Malka 203mm self-propelled heavy howitzer. The drills involved over 500 personnel and about 40 items of military hardware.
The 2S19 Msta-S is a 152.4 mm self-propelled howitzer designed by Soviet Union, which entered service in 1989 as the successor to the 2S3 Akatsiya. The vehicle is based on the T-80 tank hull, but is powered by the T-72’s diesel engine. The Msta is a modern howitzer designed for deployment either as an unarmored towed gun, or to be fitted in armored self-propelled artillery mountings. Current production of the towed model is designated Msta-B, while the self-propelled model is the Msta-S (also known by the GRAU index 2S19).
The 2A64 ordnance of the Msta-S can fire the following types of ammunition, among others: HE (24.7 km), HEAT-FS, HE-BB (28.9 km), HERA (36 km), smoke, chemical, tactical nuclear, illumination and cargo (ICM). The laser-guided round “Krasnopol” (of the 9K25 system) can also be launched, as well as the shorter “Krasnopol-M” which fits into the automatic loader. An NSVT machine gun 12,7 mm is mounted to the vehicle commander hatches, which can be remotely controlled, with a searchlight, which can be remotely controlled from under full armor protection.
The 2S7 Malka and Pion (“peony”) is a Soviet self-propelled 203mm heavy artillery. “2S7” is its GRAU designation. Its design is based on a T-80 chassis carrying an externally mounted 2A44 203 mm gun on the hull rear. It takes the crew of seven men 5–6 minutes to come into action and 3–5 minutes to come out of action. It carries four 203 mm projectiles for immediate use. It is capable of firing nuclear ammunition. The gun has a range of 37,500 m, but this can be extended to 55,500 m by using RAPs (Rocket Assisted Projectiles).