Russian Forces to Get Upgraded, Beefed-Up Protective Obereg Body Armor

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The Russian Armed Forces are set to receive an advanced version of the Obereg body armor, significantly enhancing protection for soldiers. This announcement was made by the Rostec press service, highlighting the increased protection area of over 50% in the new body armor design. The Obereg, or “Amulet,” body armor now boasts a BR-4 protection class capable of stopping armor-piercing bullets with heat-strengthened cores from cartridges used in automatic weapons, specifically 7.62mm x 39mm and 5.45mm x 39mm calibers.

Strelok Body Armor System

The state-of-the-art Strelok body armor system, designed to provide effective defense against bullets and shrapnel fragments, has been equipped to 25,000 members of the Russian military. This protective gear is produced by Triada-TKO LLC, a branch of the renowned Kalashnikov concern. The delivery of these 25,000 bulletproof vests was completed last year, with Kalashnikov disclosing earlier efforts to enhance the Strelok body armor system.

Alan Lushnikov, President of Kalashnikov, revealed in early December that the Special Operations Forces (SSO) had successfully tested the Strelok system, paving the way for its mass production. This collaboration with the Russian military also led to upgrades in the AK-12 assault rifle, following its test and use in special operations. The first shipments of the updated AK-12s were scheduled to start in January, post their successful testing and subsequent manufacturing.


  • Адаптер лямки плечевой с ремонтным фастексом: Shoulder strap adapter with repair fastex.
  • Адаптер лямки плечевой с ремонтным фастексом: Shoulder strap adapter with repair fastex.
  • Модуль бронезащиты шеи по классам защиты Бр1 / С2***: Neck protection module according to protection classes Br1* / C2**.
  • Модуль бронезащиты плеча наплечник по классам защиты Бр1 / С2***: Shoulder protection module according to protection classes Br1* / C2**.
  • Бронезащита плеча бицепс по классам защиты Бр1 / С2***: Bicep protection module according to protection classes Br1* / C2**.
  • Модуль бронезащиты передний по классам защиты Бр1 / С2* с бронепанелью по классу защиты Бр5**: Front protection module according to protection classes Br1* / C2** with armor plate according to Br5 protection class.
  • Модуль бронезащиты задний по классам защиты Бр1 / С2* с бронепанелью по классу защиты Бр5**: Back protection module according to protection classes Br1* / C2** with armor plate according to Br5 protection class.
  • Адаптер панели передней модульный быстросъемный: Quick-release front modular panel adapter.
  • Адаптер клапана бокового трехскоростного: Side three-point valve adapter.
  • Панель передняя модульная на 8 слотов: Front modular panel with 8 slots.
  • Клапан боковой трехсторонний: Side three-point valve.
  • Поддерживающие направляющие для корсетной системы: Supporting guides for the corset system.
  • Корсетная система по классам защиты Бр1 / С2***: Corset system according to protection classes Br1* / C2**.
  • Пояс модульный многофункциональный по классам защиты Бр1 / С2***: Multifunctional modular belt according to protection classes Br1* / C2**.
  • Модуль бронезащиты паха фартук по классам защиты Бр1 / С2***: Front groin protection module according to protection classes Br1* / C2**.
  • Модуль бронезащиты паха абдоминальный по классам защиты Бр1 / С2***: Abdominal groin protection module according to protection classes Br1* / C2**.
  • Модуль бронезащиты бедра по классам защиты Бр1 / С2***: Thigh protection module according to protection classes Br1* / C2**.
  • Бр1 – дополнительно обеспечивает защиту от 9x19mm FMJ ПЯ*: Br1* – additionally provides protection against 9x19mm FMJ PYa.
  • С2 – противоосколочная стойкость не менее 630 м/с**: C2** – splinter resistance of at least 630 m/s.

The Corset Plus: A Component of Strelok

The Corset Plus, produced by Triada-TKO, forms a crucial part of the Strelok system. It serves as upper body armor and includes a plate carrier with side detailing, groin guards, shoulder protectors, and a 30L backpack. This gear secures about 70% of the wearer’s body. The Corset Plus offers a basic level of protection against shrapnel, enhanced with two additional pieces that meet the GOST Level BR5 standard. Triada-TKO claims that Strelok can shield against unidentified fast-moving fragments up to 630 m/s, though this is not equivalent to the STANAG 2920 standard. The GOST Level BR5 standard indicates protection against multiple hits from 7BZ3 armor-piercing 7.62x54R mm caliber bullets.

Body Armor in the Russian Army

The Russian military employs various models of body armor, with the 6B43 being one of the most common. Part of the Ratnik (“Warrior”) system, the 6B43 vest is crafted from high-strength aramid fabric, providing substantial protection while remaining relatively lightweight. It includes pockets for additional armor plates, allowing soldiers to adjust their protection level based on the situation. The 6B43 is rated for protection up to class 6, capable of stopping 7.62mm rifle rounds.

Another widely used model is the 6B45, also part of the Ratnik system. Similar to the 6B43, the 6B45 features a quick-release system for emergency removal and includes additional protection for the neck and groin, with a protection rating up to class 5.

Russian troops in Ukraine may also use the 6B23-1, an older body armor model that, while lighter than the 6B43 and 6B45, offers less protection. It can still stop 7.62mm rifle rounds and includes additional armor plates for the chest and back. Additionally, some troops may be equipped with the 6B13, designed for use in mountainous and urban environments. The 6B13 includes extra protection for the shoulders and upper arms, made from a combination of aramid fabric and ceramic plates, and is part of the Ratnik system.

Bulletproof Vest Against AK-47

In 2020, an Indian company, Midhani, designed a model of body armor capable of stopping bullets from an AK-47 machine gun. This achievement, reported by BulgarianMilitary.com, combined robust protection with a lightweight of just 6.3 kilograms. The Bhabha Kavach 6+ protective vests, produced after over a year of development, were made for military testing. This armor can thwart a 7.62 mm bullet traveling at speeds up to 700 m/s.

The protective elements of the armor include bulletproof ceramic plates and aramid fiber packages that protect against shrapnel. This armor remains functional under extreme conditions, including exposure to water and temperature fluctuations from -40°C to +40°C.

Advancements in Body Armor Technology

The advancements in body armor technology are critical for the protection of military personnel in modern warfare. The new Obereg body armor system’s increased protection area and ability to stop armor-piercing bullets mark a significant upgrade in the protective gear available to Russian forces. The integration of these advanced body armor systems, such as the Strelok and Corset Plus, underscores the continuous efforts to enhance the safety and operational effectiveness of military personnel.

image: Obereg Body Armor – copyright debuglies.com

Global Developments and Comparative Analysis

Comparing the advancements in Russian body armor with global developments provides a comprehensive view of military protective gear’s evolution. For instance, the United States has also been enhancing its body armor systems, focusing on lightweight, high-strength materials to improve mobility and protection. The Enhanced Small Arms Protective Insert (ESAPI) plates used by the U.S. military provide protection against armor-piercing rounds and have been integrated into the Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV) system.

Similarly, European nations have been investing in advanced body armor systems, incorporating cutting-edge materials and designs to offer superior protection while minimizing weight. The UK’s Virtus body armor system, for example, integrates modular components that allow soldiers to adapt their protection levels based on mission requirements.

Technological Innovations and Future Prospects

Technological innovations in materials science and ballistic protection are driving the development of next-generation body armor. Advanced composite materials, such as ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) and nanomaterials, are being explored for their potential to offer superior ballistic resistance while reducing weight. Additionally, smart textiles with embedded sensors are being developed to monitor soldiers’ health and detect injuries in real-time, enhancing situational awareness and medical response.

The integration of these advanced materials and technologies into body armor systems is expected to revolutionize military protective gear, providing enhanced protection, comfort, and functionality. As global military forces continue to invest in research and development, the future of body armor promises to bring even greater advancements in soldier safety and operational efficiency.

The Russian Armed Forces’ acquisition of upgraded Obereg body armor reflects a broader trend of continuous improvement in military protective gear. With enhanced protection capabilities, the new body armor systems represent a significant step forward in ensuring the safety and effectiveness of military personnel. As technological advancements continue to drive innovation in body armor design and materials, the future of military protective gear looks promising, offering superior protection and performance in the ever-evolving landscape of modern warfare.


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