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Multiple launch rocket system


The M270 MLRS was first used in action in 1991 during the First Gulf War

Entered service 1983
Crew 3 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight 24.56 t
Length 6.97 m
Width 2.97 m
Height 2.62 m
Caliber 227-mm
Number of tubes 12
Rocket weight 307 kg
Warhead weight 120 kg
Firing range 2 - 40 km
Full salvo duration 48 s
Reloading time 5 - 10 minutes
Engine Cummins VTA-903T diesel
Engine power 500 hp
Maximum road speed 65 km/h
Range 485 km
Gradient 60%
Side slope 40%
Vertical step 0.9 m
Trench 2.5 m
Fording 1 m


   The M270 MLRS (Multiple Launch Rocket System) entered service with the US Army in 1983. Production of this vehicle ceased in 2003. The M270 is currently in service with the US Army and a number of other countries. It is also a standard NATO multiple launch rocket system.

   A unique feature of the M270 is that it has got no launching rails. Rockets are fired straight away from containers. Each disposable container holds 6 rockets. Rockets can be stored in containers without any maintenance for up to ten years. Vehicle carries two such containers with a total of 12 rockets.

   The standard 227-mm HE-FRAG rocket is 3.96 m long and weights 307 kg. The M270 also fires two types of cluster rockets, fitted with anti-tank submunitions and the AT-2 anti-tank mines. Warheads are interchangeable. It also fires newly developed guided munitions at a range of 60 - 100 km.

   The M270 MLRS can also launch MGM-140 ATACMS (Army TACtical Missile System) tactical missiles. The ATACMS has a range exceeding 150 km. Two of these missiles can be carried. Furthermore vehicle can carry a mix of one missile and a pack of six rockets.

   The M270 is based on the modified M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicle chassis. Vehicle is powered by the Cummins VTA-903T diesel engine, developing 500 horsepower. It has an armored hull, protecting the crew against small arms fire. It is also fitted with an NBC protection and automatic fire suppression systems.

   Reloading of the vehicle is made by its crew during 5-10 minutes. It is assisted by an integrated crane. Reloads are carried in the M985 HEMTT high mobility utility truck.




   M142 HIMARS is a lighter version of the M270. This artillery system is intended for airborne forces and marine. The launcher is based on a 6x6 army truck. The HIMARS fires the same rockets as the M270 MLRS, however it carries only one container with a total of 6 rockets. It entered service with the US Army and Marine Corps in 2005.


Video of the M270 MLRS artillery rocket system




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