Tanks arent supposed to "drive to enemy positions". This isnt 1942.
So they are helicoptered in?
Tanks arent supposed to "drive to enemy positions". This isnt 1942. Theyre supposed to give fire support to assaulting troops 2-4km behind them, and detect enemy infantry and vehicles 2-4km away with their thermal imagers.
Of course they don't just roll into enemy positions and fire at enemy troops from point blank range like some crap hollywood movie...
You don't need thermals if the enemy positions are firing and your troops are pointing out targets for you to fire upon... but of course thermals help.
Tanks assaulted positions before the invention of thermals.
Its extreme incompetence to drive a tank near to the frontline where it can be ambushed.
Well any half competent enemy will know your tanks are going to be firing from 2-4km in front of their positions so sending small teams of soldiers with RPGs and ATGMs to positions where they can attack your attacking force and then run away might be a good ambush technique...
Its very easy to see where the frontline is for an officer there, espe3cially in the donbass.
Is it really? Because part of urban combat tactics of WWII was to sneak through sewerage systems or through empty buildings to pop up in unexpected places at attack enemy forces from unexpected directions... sometimes called an ambush... where is the front line then?
Ambush positiions shoiuld be scouted by drones and thermal imagers.
Yes, thermal Imagers and Drones have rendered ambushes completely impossible... not a single western soldier has been killed in the last 30 years by ambush because they had drones and thermals which obviously are 100% effective all the time and every time and the enemy are incompetent and stupid.
If that were a fact we would not know what IED stood for let alone VIED.
Are you pretending you dont understand this point? I obviously didnt mean giving all sides of a tank max possible armor. I pointed out that by your logic tanks should have very weak armor from the front, lets say 20mm from all sides, since it can be penetrated anyway.
There is no such thing as 100% armour protection for anything, so you scale your armour based on expected threats and risks and also a dozen other factors including cost and logistics... big heavy tanks require expensive engines and drive trains and burn more fuel to travel x number of kms and weight also limits where they can go and how fast they can move... when only the top 40mm of ground is frozen then a big heavy tank will break through the crust to the mud beneath and get stuck... in comparison a much lighter tank might be able to drive around easily on that frozen crust and actually move quite quickly...
A stationary heavy tank verses a much lighter highly mobile tank.
For the VDV it is a no brainer because to be air deployed the weight is very limited, but that is compensated for by operating in the enemies rear areas where RPGs are more likely than ATGMs and MBTs. It trades speed and fire power and mobility for outright heavy armour.
A tank commander having a FLIR monocular that can see 1km out is better than just having regular cupola optics with passive night vision. In the donbass, we keep seeing russian tanks retardedly driving less than 10m away from ukrainian trench networks in the forest belts, , and their crew doesnt expect any ambush there.
Yeah, from a position in a tank actually seeing a trench in front of you is not that easy... especially if they have not used the spoils of the dirt dug out of the trench to line the trench front... even with thermals a slit trench is hard to spot... even more so when the people in the trench are relying on their hearing to track you so they don't stick their heads up and reveal their location.
Tanks are not ideal for fighting troops in trenches... even if they know they are there what are they supposed to do about it?
Hitting a trench from a tank is not easy... HE rounds hitting a metre short or a metre long might collapse that part of the trench but it would take thousands of rounds to collapse the whole trench.
Ground radars have to deal with far more clutter than UV MAWS, yet they still work.
Most ground radar either operate in very high frequencies like MMW where they almost create an image of the field of view, or more often they operate in moving target indicator mode and detect and locate moving targets like men or vehicles or artillery shells or drones...
Blinding frontal view with smoke grenades is absolutely useful if its to make an escape.
For Escape, yes, but when you have the armour and you are approaching the enemy positions you don't want to blind yourself... you want to be able to see the enemy firing positions so you can direct heavy fire at them and destroy them.
Smoke does not persist forever so when it clears they get another shot at you anyway.
Soldeirs aiming RPGs dont have Xray vision, they wont see pas the smoke grenade smokescreen. ATGMs launches will be detected with MAWS. Tanks shouldnt be in RPG range anyway.
Approaching an enemy position their RPG launch positions should have marked out on the ground the approach roads and where significant buildings and things are, so when smoke is released they could fire some rockets in likely locations... not like they are paying for their ammo... and luck is a thing... having RPGs roaring out of the smoke at you can be pretty exciting too.
Or a far more practical wireless datalink between FLIR equipped drone and TC?
I would say the exact opposite. You are a tank commander on a battlefield and a friendly drone enters the battlespace you occupy... do you think you can borrow that drone for half an hour while you figure out where your enemy positions are and the enemy force distributions, or do you think the party that launched that drone to fly past your area to get to an area beyond to look for enemy artillery units to attack will object?
A tethered drone attached to your tank can't fly away... the camera on any drone has to be directed... if the drone is tethered to your tank then you get to point the camera at things you are interested in and no one else can over rule you because they have a higher rank than you.
By all means have datalinks to share data and information with other vehicles and drones and helicopters and CAS aircraft, but having your own drone is rather more valuable and the fact that it is tethered to your vehicle means it does not need heavy batteries or engines or fuel loads and can carry things like small battlefield radars and modern powerful optics which can all be powered via the tether... you could use a hydrogen filled balloon to keep it in the air for very long periods at a time, or just electric motors with propellers... when the enemy sees the drone they wont know if a two man recon team in a 4x4 are behind that building or brick wall or bush or tree, or whether it is a T-14... what they will know is that they have been spotted...