Ministry of defence Republic of Serbia

Testing of a modernised infantry fighting vehicle IFV M-80A and shooting under low light conditions

Minister Vulin: Our soldier will have the state-of-the-art and best equipment
Defence minister Aleksandar Vulin and chief of General Staff of the Serbian Armed Forces General Milan Mojsilović attended design testing of the modernised infantry fighting vehicle IFV M-80A and shooting under low light conditions at the Nikinci Centre for testing of arms and military equipment.
According to Minister Vulin, a modern army and a modern soldier must be able to carry out all their tasks both day and night, regardless of the weather conditions.
- The Serbian Armed Forces is performing numerous modernisations, numerous improvements of the existing materiel, but also adopting new technologies and new capabilities in order to be able to meet the most complex combat tasks. We could see that a soldier equipped with thermal imaging, a soldier equipped with an image booster, that an infantry fighting vehicle equipped with thermal imaging cameras and new cannons are the future combat vehicle and the equipment that the future soldier will carry. This must become a part of the everyday life of our soldiers, such sights, equipment, protection and combat vehicles, because only in this way will we be able to cope with all the challenges of the 21st century – minister Vulin said.
The armies differ, the minister of defence said, also by the ability to wage war 24 hours in all weather conditions, and the one that is not able to do that will not be able to defend either their country or their sovereignty.
- That is why the Serbian Armed Forces and each of its members will have to be equipped and trained and able to respond to every challenge. We have shown that we are already capable of doing this, to a large extent from our domestic minds and domestic engineering solutions, and what we cannot do will be bought, but our soldier will have the most up-to-date and best equipment. What can be bought with money is not expensive if it will preserve the life of our soldier and if it will preserve the sovereignty of our Serbia – minister Vulin said.
According to Nenad Miloradović, PhD, assistant minister for material resources, shooting was performed within the framework of design testing of an optoelectronic sighting system on a prototype of a IFV M-80AB1 infantry fighting vehicle and, in parallel, infantry members equipped with the latest generation of optoelectronic sights, part of which were introduced into the Serbian Armed Forces last year, and part of it is just being tested.
- In the last few days, during this design testing, we had different weather conditions, and we had the most complex possible conditions when it comes to optoelectronic devices that we tested here – assistant Miloradović emphasised.

As he pointed out, all this was observed with the appropriate optoelectronic systems, and even in the most unfavourable conditions, it was possible to carry out testing of these devices.
- We are pleased with the results, but of course there are more things to be refined. Those devices that have already been introduced into service justify and satisfy all that is required, and the devices that are currently under testing will, in all likelihood, successfully complete the testing, after which a more massive equipping of infantry units will be carried out – assistant Miloradović emphasised, adding that the completion of design testing and the transition to final testing of a prototype infantry fighting vehicle is also expected soon.
Director of Teleoptic-Gyroscopes company, Milan Nastić said that the demonstration at Nikinci was an opportunity to observe a modernised IFV, and Teleoptic-Gyroscopes company participated in the development of an electronic device to increase the combat capabilities of the vehicle.
- We also participated with our Eagle 60 and Eagle 70 thermal sights, and the shooting was successful. We hope that this is a great contribution to our Armed Forces and a great incentive for the Teleoptic-Gyroscopes to have the opportunity to participate in equipping of our army and increasing its combat readiness – Nastić emphasised.
According to the commander of the Special Testing Crew of the Military Technical Institute, First Sergeant Davor Janjetović, shooting was carried out from a modernised armoured infantry fighting vehicle with a new turret and sighting devices.
- The sighting device has a thermal imaging camera that allows us to successfully shoot at night, First Sergeant Janjetović pointed out, adding that shooting from the PKT 7.62 mm machine gun at a distance of 500 meters was successful.

Among the members of the Serbian Armed Forces, who today fired 5.56 mm, there was Private 1st Class Slađan Banjac from the Second Army Brigade.
- I had opportunity to test shooting at targets at distances of 100, 200 and 300 meters from a 5.56 mm automatic rifle, which turned out to be excellent, Private 1st Class Banjac said, adding that he used the SOVA 4 optical sight at shooting and that he successfully hit all targets.
The testing at the Nikinci testing ground was also attended by Milan Ranković, assistant minister for defence policy; Major General Mladen Vuruna, head of Defence Technology Department; Brigadier General Željko Kuzmanović, commander of the Second Army Brigade; Brigadier General Milan Popović, head of Planning and Development Department of General Staff; Colonel Slobodan Ilić, Director of the Technical Test Centre; and Colonel Bojan Pavković, director of the Military Technical Institute.
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