RPG-29 launcher with PG-29V rocket
|Place of origin||Soviet Union|
|Used by||Russia, Mexico, Hezbollah, Ukraine, Syria, Pakistan|
|Wars||2003 Iraq war, 2006 Lebanon War, Syrian civil war|
|Weight||12.1 kg (27 lb) unloaded (with optical sight)
18.8 kg (41 lb) loaded (ready to fire)
|Length||1 m (3 ft 3 in) (disassembled for transportation)
1.85 m (6 ft 1 in) (ready to fire)
|Cartridge||PG-29V tandem rocket
TBG-29V thermobaric rounds
|Caliber||105 mm (4.1 in) barrel
65 and 105 mm (2.6 and 4.1 in) warheads
|Muzzle velocity||280 m/s (920 ft/s)|
|Effective firing range||500 m (1,600 ft)
800 m (2,600 ft) (with tripod and fire control unit)
|Sights||Iron, optical, and night sights available with ranges up to 450 m (1,480 ft); automated day and day-night sights with laser rangefinder|
|Blast yield||750 mm (30 in): RHA (600 mm (24 in) after reactive armor effects)
1,500 mm (59 in): Reinforced concrete or brick
3,700 mm (150 in): Log and earth fortification
The RPG-29 (NATO designation: Vampir) is a Russian rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) launcher. Adopted by the Soviet Army in 1989, it was the last RPG to be adopted by the Soviet military before the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. The RPG-29 has since been supplemented by other rocket-propelled systems, such as the RPG-30 and RPG-32 "Hashim". The RPG-29's PG-29V tandem-charge warhead is one of the few warhead systems which has penetrated the hulls of Western composite-armored main battle tanks in active combat.
The RPG-29 is a shoulder-launched, tube-style, breech-loading weapon designed to be carried and used by a single soldier. On the top of the launch tube is the 2.7× 1P38 optical sight. On the bottom of the tube is a shoulder brace for proper positioning along with a pistol grip trigger mechanism. A 1PN51-2 night sight can be fitted.
The RPG-29 is unusual among Russian anti-tank rocket launchers in that it lacks an initial propellant charge to place the projectile at a safe distance from the operator before the rocket ignites. Instead, the rocket engine starts as soon as the trigger is pulled, and burns out before the projectile leaves the barrel.
Two projectiles are available for the weapon; the PG-29V anti-tank/anti-bunker round and the TBG-29V thermobaric anti-personnel round. The PG-29V round has a tandem-charge HEAT warhead for defeating explosive reactive armor (ERA). When launched, the missile deploys eight fins as the rocket leaves the launcher, stabilizing the rocket during flight, up to a range of 500 meters. The warhead itself comprises two charges; an initial small high explosive charge destroys the reactive armor, or, if ERA or cage armor is absent, the main armor is impacted. Behind the primary charge, a much larger secondary shaped charge bursts at the rear of the initial warhead and projects a jet of metal into the pre-compromised armor.
The RPG-29 was developed during the late 1980s, following the development of the RPG-26, and entered service with the Soviet army in 1989. It has recently seen intermittent use by irregular forces in the Middle East theater, including in combat against U.S./U.K. forces during the Iraq War, and the 2006 Lebanon War, when it was used against Israeli forces.
2003 Iraq War
In August 2006 an RPG-29 round was reported to have penetrated the frontal ERA of a Challenger 2 tank during an engagement in al-Amarah, Iraq, lightly wounding several crew members, but only lightly damaging the tank which drove home under its own power.
From WikiLeaks: In August 5, 2007 an PG-29V hit a passing M1 in the hull rear caused 3 WIA. In September 5, 2007 an PG-29V hit the side turret of an M1 tank in Baghdad, caused 1 KIA and 2 WIA, the tank was seriously damaged.
In May 2008 The New York Times disclosed that an American M1 tank had also been damaged by an RPG-29 in Iraq. The US Army ranks the RPG-29 threat to armor so high that they refused to allow the newly formed Iraqi army to buy it, fearing it would fall into insurgent hands.
2006 Lebanon War
During the conflict the Israeli newspaper Haaretz stated that the RPG-29 was a major source of IDF casualties in the 2006 Lebanon War. A spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry denied that Russia had supplied arms directly to Hezbollah. Shortly before the end of the conflict the Russian Kommersant magazine acknowledged through anonymous sources the possibility of a weapons transfer between Syria and Hezbollah during the Syrian withdrawal from Lebanon.
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (March 2013)|
- LRAC F1
- M79 Osa
- Rocket-propelled grenade (includes a description of tactics and history.)
- List of Russian weaponry
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