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UPK-23



Overview


UPK-23

UPK-23 gun pod carried by MiG-23 Flogger.
Source: Ján Múdry - © copyright lies with original owner

Origin
Soviet Union
Type
Gun pod
Entered service
1970's
Status
In service
Development
1970's
Developer
Soviet Union - MMPP design bureau
Production
1970's - present
Producer
Soviet Union
Russia
Designations
UPK / Unifitsirovannyj Pushechnyj Kontejner
Russian for "universal gun pod"

Description


Introduction

The UPK-23 is a late Cold War era basic and powerful gun pod of Soviet origin. It was developed in the 1970's to provide the Mi-24 Hind attack helicopter with more firepower and can be used on most fighter aircraft as well. The UPK-23 sometimes referred to as the UPK-23-250 with the number 23 denoting its 23mm caliber and the 250 being its ammunition capacity. The name UPK stands for "Unifitsirovannyj Pushechnyj Kontejner", which is Russian for "universal gun pod".

Design

The UPK-23 is a gun pod of a fairly simple design. The round aerodynamic pod houses a single fixed twin barrel GSh-23L autocannon at the front and associated ammunition at the rear. For operation the pod requires external power which is provided by the aircraft. Since the cannon is fixed it is aimed by pointing the aircraft in the direction of the target. Compared to the SPPU-22 pod with similar but flexible armament the UPK-23 is much lighter.

Firepower

The UPK-23 features a single twin barrel GSh-23L autocannon and 250 rounds of 23x115mm ammunition. The cyclic rate of fire is 3.000 rpm and the maximum effective range is 2 km. The 23mm rounds are effective against infantry, soft skin vehicles and light armored vehicles.

Users

The UPK-23 is most commonly found on the Mi-24 Hind attack helicopter and armed version of the Mi-8 Hip transport helicopter, but is used ground attack fighters such as the Su-17, Su-25 and MiG-23 as well. For fixed wing aircraft the slightly heavier SPPU-22 gun pod with flexible armament usually is a better option. The UPK-23 remains available although it is unknown if these are newly produced or refurbished pods.

Details


UPK-23

UPK-23 gun pod on Mi-24 Hind with forward fairing removed.
Source: www.forum.valka.cz - © copyright lies with original owner

UPK-23-250

The UPK-23 is a gun pod with the twin barrel GSh-23L with 250 rounds of ammunition as armament. The gun is fixed and the flight path must be adjusted to aim the UPK-23. There are no derivatives or variants.

Facts UPK-23
General
Origin
Soviet Union
Type
Gun pod
Platforms
Aircraft, helicopters
Dimensions
Length
3.2 m
Diameter
0.395 m
Weight
218 kg loaded
Lug spacing
250 mm
Armament
Type
23mm GSh-23L autocannon
Ammunition
250 rounds

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The UPK-23 gun pod is fitted with the GSh-23L autocannon.