57 mm AZP S-60 (Russian: Автоматическая зенитная пушка С-60, abbrev. АЗП (AZP); literally: Automatic anti-aircraft gun S-60) is a Soviet towed, road-transportable, short- to medium-range, single-barrel anti-aircraft gun from the 1950s. The gun was extensively used in Warsaw Pact, Middle Eastern and South-East Asian countries.
|57 mm AZP S-60|
S-60 in an Israeli museum
|Place of origin||Soviet Union|
|Used by||See users|
Laotian Civil War
Cambodian Civil War
Lebanese Civil War
Somali Civil War
Syrian Civil War
Iraqi Civil War (2014–2017)
Yemeni Civil War (2015–present)
Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen
|Designer||Vasiliy Gavrilovich Grabin|
|Mass||4,660 kg (10,273 lbs)|
|Length||8.5 m (27 ft 11 in)|
|Barrel length||4.4 m (14 ft 5 in)|
|Width||2.054 m (6 ft 9 in)|
|Height||2.37 m (7 ft 9 in)|
|Shell||Fixed QF 57×348mmSR|
|Caliber||57mm (2.24 in)|
|Carriage||Four wheels with outriggers|
|Elevation||−4° to +85°|
|Rate of fire||105–120 rpm (cyclic)|
70 rpm (sustained)
|Muzzle velocity||1,000 m/s (3,281 ft/s)|
|Effective firing range||6,000 m (20,000 ft) (radar guided)|
4,000 m (13,000 ft) (optically guided)
In the late 1940s, the Soviets started to develop a 57 mm anti-aircraft gun, to replace its 37 mm guns. Three different models were presented, and the winning design was made by V. G. Grabin. According to western intelligence sources, the German prototype gun 5,5 cm Gerät 58 formed the basis for the design. The Soviets were also able to study German 5 cm Flak 41 guns that had been captured following the Battle of Stalingrad.
The prototype passed the field tests in 1946 and was accepted into service in 1950, after some minor modifications. The anti-aircraft gun was given the name 57 mm AZP S-60. Grabin continued the development and fielded the SPAAG version ZSU-57-2 in 1955.
The fire direction device was developed from the German Lambda calculator (Kommandogerät 40, 40A, and 40B) and was called PUAZO-5A. It had also a distance measuring device called D-49. The fire direction was also made more effective by including Grom-2 (10 cm wavelength) radars to the AA-batteries. The whole system was called SON-9. Later on, the calculators would be changed into the more modern RPK-1 Vaza, which had been designed by M. M. Kositskin. The calculator and the radars were transported by Ural 375 trucks.
The 57 mm gun replaced the 37 mm divisional guns in Soviet service in the 1950s. A divisional anti-aircraft regiment consisted of two AA-batteries with six 57 mm guns each. The PVO air-defence troops AA-regiments consisted of four 57 mm AA-batteries (24 guns).
In the mid-1960s, the Soviet divisional anti-aircraft units began replacing their AA-guns with missiles, and by the end of the 1970s, the AA-guns had almost disappeared. However, they were used in many other countries. The performance of AAA in Vietnam against low-flying aircraft led the Soviets to bring back many guns from storage to supplement the Surface-to-Air Missiles, whose performance at low altitude was less than satisfactory.
The S-60 and its Chinese copy (the Type 59) have seen combat in several wars all over the world—e.g., the Six-Day War and the Yom Kippur War in the Middle East, and the Soviet–Afghan War. During the Vietnam War, the S-60 was the keystone of North Vietnamese low-altitude air defense and was most effective between 460 meters and 1,500 meters.
Syrian S-60 guns were actively used during the Syrian Civil War by both the army and different rebel groups. As many other guns originally designed for antiaircraft use, most of the time they were used in shelling ground targets.
The S-60 fires ammunition in 57×348SR caliber, with ballistics (see below) similar to the longer 57×438mm ammunition of Bofors 57 mm AA gun, but somewhat weaker than Soviet 57 mm anti-tank guns of World War II. Modern anti-aircraft rounds have not been developed for the gun; the main characteristics of the Soviet-era ammunition are listed in the table below. In addition to these People's Republic of China manufactures ammunition in 57x348SR caliber, designated Type 59 HE-T, Type 59 AP-T, and Type 76 HE-T.
Training rounds include a blank round MK-281 ("Manöver-Kartusche", East German designation), and training rounds with -IN suffix (UBR-281U-IN, UOR-281U-IN) identifying the rounds as fuzeless versions of the APCBC and HE rounds with dummy fuzes and inert filling replacing the explosive cavities.
- AK-725: Naval version of the S-60 gun. Introduced in 1958. Mounted in single, double and quadruple mounts (designated ZIF-31) on many early Soviet destroyers.
- ZIF-72: Naval version which is enclosed in a metal housing and fully automatic. Also exported to India. Introduced in the mid-1970s.
- ZSU-57-2: Self-propelled version with two 57 mm S-60 guns (designated S-68)
- Type-80: Chinese version of the ZSU-57-2.
- BM-57: Updated version.
The S-60 was sold to at least 37 different countries during the Soviet era. The gun was also license manufactured in Poland by Zakłady Mechaniczne Tarnów in Tarnów (en. Tarnów Mechanical Works), and in Hungary by DIMÁVAG in Miskolc-Diósgyőr, and in China as the Type 59.
Algeria: 70 units Angola Armenia Bangladesh: 34 units as of 2017 Bulgaria Republic of the Congo Cuba: 400 units Czech Republic Egypt: 600 units Eritrea: 12 units Ethiopia Georgia: 15 units Guinea: 12 units Guinea-Bissau: 10 units Hungary: 186 units (43 in store) Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant: 21 units India Iraq Laos Libya: 90 units Mali: 6 units Mauritania: 2 units Moldova: 12 units Nicaragua Poland: 500 units Romania: 250 units Sahrawi Republic Somalia Sudan: Both S-60 and Type 59 versions Syria: 675 units Free Syrian Army: Used by Syrian Rebels on various trucks chassis Turkmenistan: 22 units Ukraine: 400 units Yemen: 120 units
Afghanistan Albania Bosnia and Herzegovina Belarus People's Republic of China Czechoslovakia: 575 units. Passed on to successor states. Finland: 12 units. Nicknamed Nikolai. Indonesia: 256 units Iran Israel: Captured units People's Republic of Kampuchea Kyrgyzstan: 24 units Morocco Mozambique Mongolia North Korea Pakistan Russia Soviet Union: Passed on to successor states Slovakia Thailand: 24 units Vietnam Yugoslavia: retired Zambia: ~30 units
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