Russia’s TOS-2 “Tosochka” heavy flamethrower will undergo final trials in August, Izvestia reported citing sources.
The trials will last until the end of the year, after which a decision will be made concerning deployment, the Moscow-based news outlet added.
The mobile weapon can cover hundreds of kilometers, burning large tracts of land “in minutes” utilizing thermobaric ammunition. Thermobaric weapons — or aerosol bombs — use oxygen from the air to produce high-temperature explosions.
The system sprays a volley of aerosols toward enemy positions and detonates.
During the “Kavkaz-2020” exercise last year, TOS-2 reportedly destroyed “advancing columns of armored vehicles of the mock enemy.”
Izvestia cited unnamed experts who said that the system is well-suited for grasslands, deserts, and areas with rocky ground such as that in the Middle East and southern Russia.
Russia used TOS-2’s predecessor in Syria, where it was deployed as a reinforcement for the tank and motorized rifle subunits. However, the system lacked maneuverability and speed due to its tracked-based chassis.
The mobile TOS-2 promises to be more maneuverable and has an enhanced firing range of 18 kilometers (11 miles) — three times greater than that of its predecessor.
The upgraded system is also equipped with a better guidance and fire control system. The vehicle speed remains the same as its predecessor at 60 kilometers (37 miles) per hour.