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Soft kill techniques

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I read about soft kill techniques like the one in the T-90 but also in more modern new tanks like the south korean K2. It's this technique which turns the turret automatically in the direction from which a laser range shoot comes and automatically throw fog granats. I wonder if it really makes sense. For one, if I'm the gunner in the opponent tank and make a laser range measurement then I already have the distance before the other tanks turret turns around and throw its fog granats. The next thing I do is to fire even so I have to fire into the fog. The other thing is, if this technique works this way every time a laser range shoot is detected I only have to make several laser range measurement and soon the tank is out of fog granats. Or even better, if there are at least two tanks in different positions each one makes a shoot with the laser and the turret will spin forward and backward. Do this several times and you get the crew sea sick.

So, does this technique really makes sense?



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"Soft kill" (aside from pressing a pillow on someone's face) refers to mechanisms to prevent being hit from a projectile without directly attacking the projectile, but rather the guidance. Of course, if the projectile is already flying ballistically with a valid firing solution the outcome is highly deterministic.

But Shtora and similar technologies rely on a number of mechanisms to prevent accurate targetting if, for example, the enemy gunner lased the target prematurely (or carelessly). Shtora ejects traditional obscurants (multispectral smoke both in the horizontal and vertical plane) to obfuscate optical target tracking. It also ejects IR decoys and chaff for IR or radar signature homing missiles. If the attacking projectile is a laser beam rider, obfuscating optical tracking can already be a powerful countermeasure (if the crew can displace fast enough from its last known position).

Finally, the existence of Shtora or Galix forces the enemy to lase on something else than the target itself, or to track the target reliably before lasing and then immediately firing which may already "soft soft kill" a number of engagements because the attacker will wait more often with the engagemen until he has an exceptionally clear field of fire (so there's the "engagement prevention" effect playing a role.

The existence of laser warning receivers forces the opposing party to consider traditional measures of emission control like with the use of radio or air defense radar, which limits the utility value of these technologies. Radar and radio were initially switched on more or less continuously. As the methods to detect and triangulate those emissions were refined and used for countermeasures, their use became more and more regulated and restricted.

In a similar way, indiscriminate use of laser range finders is no longer possible with softkill technologies in play.

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I moved the topic because I think it's a good question that seems to be eminently tactical.

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