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Russian GRAU major Emblem

The Main Missile and Artillery Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation (GRAU) ([Главное ракетно-артиллерийское управление МО РФ (ГРАУ), Glavnoye raketno-artilleriyskoye upravleniye MO RF (GRAU)] Error: {{Lang-xx}}: text has italic markup (help)) is a department of the Russian (ex-Soviet) Ministry of Defense. It is subordinate to the Chief of Armament and Munition of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, a vice-minister of defense.

The organization dates back to 1862 when it was established under the name Главное артиллерийское управление (ГАУ - GAU). The "R" from "rockets" was added to the title in 1960.

In particular, the GRAU is responsible for assigning GRAU indices to Russian army munitions and equipment.

Arsenals of the GRAU, according to Kommersant-Vlast in 2005, include the 60th at Kaluga, the 55th at Rzhev, the 75th at Serpukhov south of Moscow, (all three in the Moscow Military District) and the 80th at Gagarskiy, the 116th at Krasno-Oktyabrskiy and the 5th, all in the Volga-Urals Military District.[1]

The current Chief of the GRAU is Colonel General Vladimir N. Zaritskiy.

GAU indices before 1950

Current GRAU indices

GRAU indices are of the form <number> <letter> <number>, with the optional suffix <letter> <number>. A specially assigned codename may follow the index.

For example: «2 S 19  Msta-S», the 2S19 Msta self-propelled howitzer.


Several common misconceptions surround the scope and originating body of these indices. The GRAU designation is not an industrial designation, nor is it assigned by the design bureau. In addition to its GRAU designation, a given piece of equipment could have a design name, an industrial name and a service designation.

For example, one of the surface-to-air missiles in the S-25 Berkut air defense system had at least four domestic designations:

  • design name: La-205
  • industry name: Product 205 (izdeliye 205)
  • GRAU index: 5V7
  • Soviet military designation: V-300

Some Soviet general-purpose bombs bore a designation that looked confusingly similar to GRAU.[note 1]

Designation scheme

The first part of a GRAU index is a number indicating which of the several main categories of equipment a given item belongs to. The second part, a Cyrillic character, indicates the subcategory. The third part, a number, indicates the specific model. The optional suffix can be used to differentiate variants of the same model.

1 (Radio and electronics equipment)

  • 1K: 1K1, the Buran space shuttle
  • 1L: 1L14, the IFF detector for the 9K310 (Igla) air defense system
  • 1S: Radar (1S11, target detecting radar of 1S91 command and control vehicle of 2K12 Kub air defense system)
  • 1V: Artillery command vehicles (1V18/19 on BTR-60 chassis, 1V13/16 on MT-LBu chassis)

2 (Artillery systems)

3 (Army and naval missiles)

4 (Naval missiles and army equipment (munitions, reactive armour, etc.))

5 (Air defense equipment)

  • 5B: Surface-to-air missile warheads (5B18, the warhead for the S-125's V-601 missile)
  • 5P: Surface-to-air missile launchers (5P75, the four-missile launcher for the S-125 air defense system)
  • 5V: Surface-to-air missiles (5V55, SAM for S-300 air defense system)
  • 5Ae: Computers (5Ae26, a specialized multi-CPU computer with a performance of 1.5 MIPS)
  • 5Ya: Surface-to-air missiles (5Ya23, a SAM for the S-75 air defense system)
  • 5#
  • 51T6 (SH-11/ABM-4 Gorgone), an exoatmospheric anti-ballistic missile interceptor for the A-135 air defense system
  • 53T6 (SH-08/ABM-3 Gazelle), an endoatmospheric interceptor for A-135 air defense system

6 (Firearms, air defense equipment)

  • 6B: Body armor (6B1), helmets (6B6)
  • 6V: Firearms (6V1, the Dragunov sniper rifle)
  • 6G: Firearms (6G3, the RPG-7 man-portable, rocket-propelled grenade launcher; 6G17, the VOG-25 40 mm grenade cartridge)
  • 6Zh: Firearm equipment (6Zh1M, a 100-round magazine for the PKM machine gun)
  • 6P: Firearms (6P1, the 7.62 mm AKM)
  • 6T: Firearm equipment (6T2, Samozhenkov's carriage for PKS machine gun)
  • 6U: Firearm equipment (6U1, personnel carrier vehicle carriage for PKB/PKBM machine gun)
  • 6Kh: Knives and bayonets (6Kh3, a sword-bayonet for the AKM)
  • 6Ts: Sights (6Ts1, the PSO-1 sight for the Dragunov sniper rifle)
  • 6Ch: Firearm equipment (6Ch12, the PBS-1 flash suppressor and silencer)
  • 6Sh: Firearm equipment (6Sh5, an ammunition belt)

7 (Firearm munitions)

  • 7B: Ammunition (7B33, the 7.62 x 54 mm R armour-piercing/incendiary round)
  • 7G: Grenades (7G1, the RKG-3 handheld HEAT grenade)
  • 7Z: Ammunition (7Z1, the 14.5 x 115 mm incendiary round)
  • 7N: Ammunition (7N1, the 7.62 x 54 mm round for sniper rifles)
  • 7P: Rocket-propelled grenades (7P1, a 40 mm RPG-7 round)
  • 7S: Misc. ammunition (7S1, a signal false-fire of orange smoke)
  • 7T: Ammunition (7T2, the 7.62 x 54 mm R tracer round)
  • 7U: Ammunition (7U1, the 7.62x54mm low speed (subsonic) US cartridge)
  • 7Kh: Training ammunition (7Kh1, the 12.7 x 108 mm blank cartridge)
  • 71Kh6: the US-KMO Prognoz-2 early warning system satellite
  • 73N6 Baikal-1: an automated air defense command and control system
  • 76N6: a low-altitude target detector radar
  • 75E6 Parol-3: the IFF interrogator for the S-75M and S-125

8 (Army missiles and rocketry)

9 (Army missiles, UAVs)

  • 9A: Launchers (9A52, the chassis of the Smerch MLRS)
  • 9K: Systems (9К33, Osa surface-to-air missile system; 9К115-2, Metis-M anti-tank missile system; 9K310, the Igla air defense system)
  • 9F: Training and equipment systems (9F827 of the Smerch system)
  • 9M: Missiles (9M133 Kornet) and 9M62, T-92 UAV from aerial reconnaissance complex "Tipchak";
  • 9P: Launchers (9P140, the chassis of the Uragan MLRS)
  • 9S: 9S737, Ranzhir mobile command center
  • 9T: Transporter-loaders and re-supply vehicles (9T234 of the 9K58 Smerch system, 9T244 of the 9K331 Tor system)

10 (Equipment)

  • 10P: Sights (10P19, the PGO-7V sight for RPG-7V grenade launcher)
  • 10R: Radios (10R30 Karat-2, a radio transmitter)

11 (Rocketry and associated equipment)

  • 11A: Rocketry (11A51, the Korolev N-1 heavy-lift launcher, 11A511, the Soyuz launcher)
  • 11B: Nuclear thermal rocket engines (11B91 (RD0410); 11B97)
  • 11G: Equipment (11G12, a refuelling station)
  • 11D: Rocket engines (11D43, the RD-253 liquid fuel rocket engine (1-st stage of "Proton" space launcher))
  • 11K: Rocketry (11K25 Energia, a heavy-lift rocket for the "Buran" space shuttle)
  • 11M: Onboard equipment (11M243, solar array actuators for the 11F624 Yantar-2K satellite)
  • 11P: Ground equipment (11P825, the launch complex for the 11K25)
  • 11S: Rocket stages (11S59, the 1st and 2nd stages ("unit A") of the Soyuz rocket)
  • 11F: Satellites (11F67 Molniya-1, a telecom satellite; 11F35K1, the first production Buran; 11F654 GLONASS satellites)

14 (Rocketry and associated equipment)

  • 14D: Rocket engines (14D30, the "Briz" booster's S5.98M liquid fuel engine)
  • 14I: Ground equipment (14I02, the ground equipment for the "Briz" booster's 8P882 system)
  • 14P: Ground equipment (14P72, the service system for the "Briz" booster)
  • 14S: Boosters (14S12, the "Briz" booster)
  • 14T: Ground equipment (14T81, the storage equipment for the "Briz" booster)
  • 14F: Satellites (14F10, the IS-MU Naryad anti-satellite weapon)

15 (Strategic Missile Forces equipment)

17 (Rocketry and associated equipment)

  • 17D: Misc. rocket engines (17D58Ae, the stabilization and orientation engine of the "Briz-M" booster)
  • 17K: Space-based systems (17K114, a space-based reconnaissance and targeting system)
  • 17P: Ground equipment (17P31, the start system for 11K25)
  • 17S: Rocket stages (17S40, Unit D of the Proton launcher)
  • 17U: Ground equipment (17U551, the "Briz-M" booster testing system)
  • 17F: Satellites (17F15 Raduga-1, a telecommunications satellite)

See also


  1. For example, the FAB-250sch entered service in 1944 with the designation 7-F-334, which was not assigned by GRAU.


  1. Kommersant-Vlast, Vys Rossikaya Armiya, 2005

Further reading

External links

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