Form of armor used as an add on to existing metal plate on tanks and armored personnel carriers. Ablative armor is specifically designed to be destroyed by incoming missile or light cannon fire, thus protecting the vehicle's primary armor from further damage. Most Russian MBT's (main battle tanks,) such as the T-80 and T-72 use ablative armor extensively in the form of large olive drab rectangles seemingly strapped at random onto the front, rear and turret areas of the machine. Use of ablative armor is particularly effective against smaller shaped charge warheads as fielded by infantry crews with anti-tank weaponry.

The underlying physics of ablative armor involve nothing complicated more than the absorption of kinetic energy generated by a warhead detonation.
As the missile detonates it creates a shock wave in front of it designed to compromise the skin of the vehicle at a specific point. This then allows the missile to continue penetration of the target, at which point the warhead will complete the detonation cycle inside of the target. Ablative armor is essentially a throwaway solution to such shape charge warheads. Unfortunately it is not effective a solution as it would seem, given that the easiest way to overcome such protection is simply to build anti-tank missiles with larger warheads.

Ablative armor differs directly from reactive armor, (which actually explodes, thereby creating another shockwave to counter the effects of the incoming missile,) in that they are completely passive systems. It has a direct advantage in that it is extremely cheap and simple to implement, tank crews simply bolt or strap the additional armor onto the tank and drive away. If and when damaged they remove the effected sections and replace it with new material. Significant weight will be added to the vehicle however this is not seen as a disadvantage by most tank crews in hostile situations where ablative armor is used.

The closest equivalent to ablative armor for a human being would be the leather jackets and coveralls worn by motorcycle riders which are designed to be destroyed aesthetically by a road accident but still prevent damage to the underlying skin.

back to Latin...

In Latin, the ablative case is used to refer to adverbial concepts (means, place where, time, accompaniment, etc)

For Example:
English: "The farmers aren't in the field."
Latin: "Agricolae in agris non sunt."

English: "There are many roads in Rome."
Latin: "Romae sunt multae viae."

In Latin, the ablative case uses the endings:

      Sing  Plur
1Dec   -a    -is
2Dec   -o    -is
3Dec   -e    -ibus
4Dec   -u    -ibus
5Dec   -e    -ebus

Ablative of Respect

The ablative case is sometimes used to show the respect to which something is said, given, or done.

Examples of use:
English: "He is king in name."
Latin: "Est rex nomine."

English: "All these are similar in language, customs, and laws."
Latin: "Hi omnes lingua, institutis, et legibus similes sunt."

English: "The boy is large in body."
Latin: "Puer corpore magnus est."

Ablative of Place Where

Ablative is also used with the preposition 'in' to show the place where something is used or done.

Examples of use:
English: "The Farmers Aren't in the forest."
Latin: "Agricolae in silvis non sunt."

English: "There are slaves in Athens."
Latin: "Athenis sunt servar."

English: "My frind is in the house."
Latin: "Amicus meus in casa est."

Ablative Absolute

Also called nominative absolute, this is used to convey a conditional that is grammatically independant from the rest of the sentence structure.

Example of use:
English: "Caesar being leader, the city was saved."
Latin: "Caesare Duce, urbs servata est."

Ablative of Accompaniment

When used with the preposition cum and denoting company or conflict, an ablative becomes ablative of Accompaniment.

Examples of use:
English: "The swords are with the weapons in the field."
Latin: "Gladii cum telis in agro sunt"

English: "The servants work with the Farmers."
Latin: "Servi cum agricolis laborant."

Ablative of Agent

Ablative of Agent is the Latin equivalent of the English passive voice phrase by whom or by what.

Example of use:
English: "The boy was carried by the servant"
Latin: "Puer a servo portabatur"

Ablative of Cause

This is used to express the cause or reason of an action, state, or feeling.

Example of use:
English: "Caesar was praised because of his bravery."
Latin: "Caesar virtute laudati sunt."

Ablative of Comparison

Ablative of comparison is used when a comparison is expressed without using quam.

Example of use:
English: "Your plans are clearer to us than light."
Latin: "Consilia tua sunt clariora luce."

Ablative of Degree of Difference

This is generally used with paulo, multo, or a phrase containing a number to express degree of difference.

Example of use:
English: "I am much stronger."
Latin: "multo fortior sum."

Ablative of Description

Ablative can also be used to describe a noun.

Example of use:
English: "He is a man of great courage."
Latin: "Homo magna virtute est."

Ablative of Place from which

When an ablative is used in conjunction with the prepositions a, ab, de, e, or ex, it demonstrates motion from one place to another.

Example of use:
English: "The messenger hastened from the city to the camp."
Latin: "Nuntius ab urbe ad castra properavit."

Ablative of Manner

Another common variant of the ablative used with cum, this shows how an action is done.

Example of use:
English: "The servants worked with dilligence."
Latin: "Servi cum diligentia laboraverant."

Ablative of Means

This is used to express the means by which something is said, given, or done, without using cum.

Example of use:
English: "The master called the servant with a trumpet"
Latin: "Dominus tuba servum vocabat."

Ablative of Separation

This ablative is used to convey the state of being apart from something. If the ablative refers to a person, a preposition is used.

Examples of use:
English: "He freed his country from danger."
Latin: "Patriam periculo liberavit."

English: "He freed his country from the enemy."
Latin: "Patriam ab hostibus liberavit."

Personal notes from Latin class
"Our Latin Heritage", book 2 (ISBN 0153894687)

Ab"la*tive (#), a. [F. ablatif, ablative, L. ablativus fr. ablatus. See Ablation.]


Taking away or removing.


Where the heart is forestalled with misopinion, ablative directions are found needful to unteach error, ere we can learn truth. Bp. Hall.

2. Gram.

Applied to one of the cases of the noun in Latin and some other languages, -- the fundamental meaning of the case being removal, separation, or taking away.


© Webster 1913.

Ab"la*tive, (Gram.)

The ablative case.

ablative absolute, a construction in Latin, in which a noun in the ablative case has a participle (either expressed or implied), agreeing with it in gender, number, and case, both words forming a clause by themselves and being unconnected, grammatically, with the rest of the sentence; as, Tarquinio regnante, Pythagoras venit, i. e., Tarquinius reigning, Pythagoras came.


© Webster 1913.

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