The T-80 is a third-generation main battle tank designed and manufactured in the Soviet Union. A development of the T-64, it entered service in 1976. The T-80U was last produced in a factory in Omsk, Russia, while the T-80UD and further-developed T-84 continue to be produced in Ukraine. The T-80 and its variants are in service in Belarus, Cyprus, Egypt, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Russia, South Korea, and Ukraine. The chief designer of the T-80 was the Russian engineer Nikolay Popov.
Built at the Kirov factory starting from March 1942, the T-80 is a modified version of the T-70 light reconnaissance tank, with the old 1-man turret replaced with a larger 2-man turret to improve combat effectiveness. The T-70 and T-80 replaced the T-60, which was originally intended as a replacement for the aging PT-38 amphibious scout tank and the sophisticated but expensive and complex T-50. The T-70 and T-80 addressed the main issue of the T-60 which had poor cross-country mobility and a weak 20mm main gun. All light tank production was stopped in October 1943 after only 180 T-80s being built, since the Red Army tactics no longer included the use of light tanks. The T-70 and T-80 chassis was used as a basis for the SU-76 and SU-85B tank destroyers which were used throughout the war.