Russia is testing the Kornet anti-tank missile-equipped Marker unmanned ground vehicle for the Ukraine war.
Moscow is preparing to field four Markers to counter the Western battle tanks arriving in Ukraine, former Russian space agency chief Dmitry Rogozin revealed in February.
Rogozin posted a video on Telegram last week of what appears to be a Kornet-outfitted Marker being tested.
“For the first time, we installed four anti-tank systems at once on the rotary support module of this robotic complex,” Rogozin wrote in the video.
1/ Today, Dmitry Rogozin published a video of Marker UGV tests with “Kornet” anti-tank missiles somewhere in Donbas. A few notes on this test https://t.co/cXqFMmxleW https://t.co/fe0GaYBhjv pic.twitter.com/cgCMq7HUV9
— Samuel Bendett (@sambendett) March 31, 2023
The Kornet Missile
The Kornet has been designed to engage battle tanks and other armored vehicles, including those with “modern reactive armor,” according to the Russian state Rostec corporation.
The company claimed in February that the guided missile, including the Vikhr and Ataka air-launched missiles and the 125mm Mango armor-piercing shells, could destroy the German Leopard tanks.
“The Leopard 2 is a modern and well-protected vehicle but cannot be called invulnerable,” the state-backed TASS news agency quoted Rostec as saying.
“Combat experience has shown that these tanks can be obliterated even with old man-portable anti-tank missile systems that are considerably inferior by their performance to weapons operational in the Russian Army, in particular, Kornet anti-tank missile systems.”
Leopard Lacks Explosive Reactive Armor
Citing Rostec, the news outlet wrote that the tank’s vulnerability to Russian weapons is due to its lack of explosive reactive armor.
However, the Leopards could be fitted with armor, according to a report by the Modern War Institute.
It is unclear whether the tanks sent to Ukraine are equipped with the protective gear.
Marker Unmanned Ground Vehicle
Originally developed as a testbed for new robotic technologies, the Marker received upgrades in 2021-2022, including anti-drone electronic jamming and autonomous communication capabilities.
The three-ton tracked platform is also equipped to communicate with a group of ground robots.
In February, Rogozin said that the unmanned ground vehicle’s electronic catalog helps the system automatically recognize a tank and strike it.
Mass Production Planned
Russia plans to mass produce Kornet-equipped Markers for the Ukraine war.
“The Marker robotic complex, equipped with a new combat module with the Kornet complex, after the elimination of a number of comments, it is planned to promptly put into mass production for the needs of a special military operation,” RIA Novosti quoted a source as saying last week.
“Given that the Kornet is capable of penetrating more than 1 meter (3.28 feet) of homogeneous armor, a robot equipped with such a complex will be very useful in the fight against enemy armored vehicles and other objects.”