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A100

Multiple launch rocket system

A-100 MLRS

The A100 was a Chinese attempt to create an artillery rocket system similar to a Soviet Smerch

 
 
Country of origin China
Entered service ?
Crew ~ 4 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight ~ 40 t
Length ~ 12 m
Width ~ 3 m
Height ~ 3 m
Armament
Caliber 300 mm
Number of tubes 10
Rocket weight 840 kg
Warhead weight 200 kg
Firing range 120 km
Full salvo duration 60 s
Reloading time 20 minutes
Mobility
Engine diesel
Engine power ?
Maximum road speed 60 km/h
Range 650 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 57%
Side slope 30%
Vertical step ~ 0.6 m
Trench ~ 2 m
Fording 1.1 m

 

   In 1997 China received a small number of Soviet Smerch multiple launch artillery rocket systems. At the time the Smerch was the most powerful system of its type in the world. So eventually Chinese created an indigenous system, which was modeled after the Smerch. The A100 reportedly appeared during the late 1990s. It first observed in 2002. It was a Chinese attempt to create a powerful rocket system, similar to a Russian Smerch. In many respects it is similar to the Smerch - the A100 fires 300 mm rockets and is based on a heavy high mobility truck chassis. However manufacturers insist that it is completely different system. The A100 was trialed by the Chinese army, however a PHL03 was selected instead, which was a close copy of the Smerch. The A100 was proposed for export customers. Its improved version has been exported to Pakistan and Tanzania.

   Pakistan procured a battalion of A100E systems (36 launchers). It was purchased in response to India's acquisition of the Russian 9A52-2T Smerch (variant of the original Smerch). Both the Smerch and the A100E are 300 mm MLRS systems. Pakistan also considers local production of the A100E.

   This long-range artillery system is intended to attack important area targets, such as airfields, command centers, radar stations, artillery or missile batteries, concentrations of troops and vehicles.

   The A100 artillery rocket system has 10 launch tubes for 300 mm artillery rockets (the original Smerch has 12 tubes). Chinese manufacturers claim that the A100 is not compatible with the 300 mm rockets of the Smerch. They also insist that Chinese rockets use different propellant motors and components. A standard rocket is 7.3 m long and weights 840 kg. A variety of warheads are available, including High Explosive Fragmentation (HE-FRAG), fuel-air explosive, and cargo warheads. It is claimed that the A100 MLRS has a maximum range of 120 km, versus 90 km of improved Russian Smerch. Minimum range of fire is 40 km.

   It takes 8 minutes to prepare a launcher vehicle for firing. Once the rockets are launched it leaves its firing position within 2 minutes. Launcher vehicle is fitted with a satellite navigation system, to provide a real-time positioning data. This system can launch single rockets or full salvo.

   An early version of the A100 launcher vehicle was based on a Taian TA580 special wheeled chassis with 8x8 configuration. However improved artillery systems exported to Pakistan and Tanzania were based on a newer Taian TAS4500 special wheeled chassis with 8x8 configuration. Vehicle is fitted with a central tyre inflation system and has a good cross-country mobility.

   A battery of the A100 MLRS comprises a launch vehicles, reloading vehicles and command post vehicle. The reloading vehicle is fitted with a crane and carries a full set of reload rockets. The launcher vehicle is reloaded within 20 minutes. Reloading usually takes place away from firing position, to avoid counter battery fire.

 

Variants

 

   A100E is an improved version of the A100. It has been exported to Pakistan, and possibly, Tanzania. The launcher vehicle is based on a newer Taian TAS4500 special wheeled chassis with 8x8 configuration. Pakistan procured a battalion of improved A100E systems (36 launchers). A follow-on order is also likely. It was purchased in response to India's acquisition of the Russian 9A52-2T Smerch (variant of the original Smerch). Both the Smerch and the A100E are 300 mm MLRS systems. Pakistan also considers local production of the A100E.

   AR1A is an improved version fitted a with re-arranged rocket tubes. It carries 2 pods with 5 launch tubes each. It uses the same 300 mm rockets. The pods are factory fitted and sealed. Once all the rockets are launched the pods are removed and replaced. Such concept offers advantage of faster reloading and simpler logistics. The pods with rockets are also much easier to store and to maintain. The AR1A is also capable of launching 370 mm guided rockets of an AR3 artillery rocket system. These have a maximum range of 220 km. These guided rockets have a CEP of no more than 50 meters and have capabilities similar that of short-range ballistic missiles. Yet the guided rockets are cheaper and easier to produce.

   A200 is a further development of the A100. It carries a total of 8 rockets in 2 pods. These rockets have a range of up to 200 km. The A200 has been adopted by the Belarus. However the launcher is based on Belarusian 8x8 heavy high mobility chassis and this system is locally known as the Polonez. There is also an A300 system, which has a range of up to 290 km. It has been reported that China has selected the A300 system for its armed forces, but it is likely to be fielded under a different name.

 

 

 
A-100 MLRS

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A-100 MLRS

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A-100 MLRS

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A-100 MLRS

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