|T-60 scout tank|
T-60 at the Parola Tank Museum
|Place of origin||Soviet Union|
|Used by||Soviet Union|
|Wars||World War II|
|Manufacturer||Factory 37, Moscow, GAZ, Gorkiy, Factory 38, Kirov|
|20 mm TNSh cannon (750 rds.)|
|7.62 mm coax DT machine gun|
70 hp (52 kW)
|Fuel capacity||320 l|
Nicholas Astrov's design team at Moscow Factory No. 37 was assigned the task of designing amphibious and non-amphibious scout tanks in 1938. They produced the T-30A and T-30B prototypes. The former was to be manufactured as the T-40 amphibious tank starting in 1940. It also led to the T-40S (sukhoputniy, "dry-land" version), a heavier tank prototype which was considered too complex to manufacture. The T-30B prototype, sharing the T-40's chassis but simpler in construction and with heavier armour, was accepted as the T-60 scout tank, and began production in July 1941, just after the German invasion.
Although at first intended to carry a 12.7 mm machine gun like the T-40, the armament was later upgraded to the 20 mm TNSh cannon, a tank version of the ShVAK, on the advisement of the Chairman of the Council of Ministers, V.A. Malyshev. This weapon could penetrate 15 mm of perpendicular armour at 500 m range which proved inadequate against the newer uparmored German tank designs thus attempts were made in 1942 to re-arm the T-60 with the 37 mm ZIS-19 cannon but were abandoned due to the Soviet Union's shortage of 37 mm ammunition.
The T-60 was also used in the design of the experimental T-90 antiaircraft tank. This project switched to the T-70 light tank, and was finally cancelled without any production.
One T-60 was converted into a glider in 1942 and was designed to be towed by a Petlyakov Pe-8 or Tupolev TB-3 bomber and was to be used to provide partisan forces with light armour. The tank was lightened for air use by removing armament, ammunition, headlights and leaving a very limited amount of fuel. Even with the modifications the TB-3 bomber had to ditch the glider due to the T-60's poor aerodynamics during its only flight to avoid crashing. The T-60 landed on a field near the airdrome and after dropping the glider wings and tail returned to its base. Due to lack of sufficiently powerful aircraft to tow it the project was canceled and never resumed.
Romanian TACAM T-60
- Zaloga 1984, p 116.
- Miller, Steven (2000). Tanks of the World: From World War I to the Present Day. Osceola, WI: MBI Publishing. ISBN 0-7603-0892-6.
- Zaloga, Steven J.; James Grandsen (1984). Soviet Tanks and Combat Vehicles of World War Two. London: Arms and Armour Press. ISBN 0-85368-606-8.
- T-60 Development History and Combat Employment Battlefield.ru
- T-60 tanks, T-60 tanks in museum and monuments
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