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RM-70 Vampir

Multiple launch rocket system

RM-70 Vampir

The RM-70 Vampir is a Czech upgrade of the popular RM-70 artillery rocket system

 
 
Country of origin Czech Republic
Entered service 2016
Crew 4 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight 25.89 t
Length 9.97 m
Width 2.5 m
Height ?
Armament
Caliber 122 mm
Number of tubes 40
Rocket weight 66.35 kg
Warhead weight 18.4 kg
Firing range 20 km
Full salvo duration 30 s
Reloading time 2 minutes
Mobility
Engine Tatra T3C diesel
Engine power 360 hp
Maximum road speed 85 km/h
Range ~ 1 000 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 40%
Vertical step 0.6 m
Trench 2 m
Fording 1.5 m

 

   A Czechoslovak RM-70 was a very popular artillery rocket system. It was adopted back in 1970 and was produced in significant numbers. It was exported to a number of countries. The RM-70 is still widely used today. After collapse of the Czechoslovakia, Czech and Slovak companies introduced their own upgrades of the RM-70 artillery rocket system. In 2005 Slovakia adopted an RM-70 Modular. Recently Czech republic introduced their own upgrade - the RM-70 Vampir (vampire). It was developed by Excalibur Army company. The RM-70 Vampir, and its variants, have been exported to Azerbaijan, Indonesia (8 units), and possibly, some other countries.

   Main role of this artillery rocket system is to engage area targets, such as concentrations of troops and armored vehicles, artillery batteries, and other targets.

   The RM-70 Vampir follows the lines of the original Czechoslovak RM-70 and can be seen as a heavier version of the popular Soviet Grad artillery rocket system. It has 40 launching tubes for 122 mm rockets. A standard HE-FRAG rocket is 2.87 m long and weights 66.35 kg. Its warhead weights 18.4 kg. Maximum range of fire is 20 km. The RM-70 fires Czech-produced rockets, however it also compatible with all standard 122 rockets, developed for the Soviet Grad artillery rocket system. Rockets with various warheads are available, including incendiary, smoke, illumination warheads. Also there are cluster warheads with anti-tank or anti-personnel submunitions, as well as specialized warheads. It is claimed by developers that a full salvo of 40 rockets covers an area of up to 70 hectares.

   This artillery rocket system is operated by a crew of 4.

   The RM-70 Vampir is based on a Tatra T815-7 heavy high mobility truck chassis. It is powered by Tatra's T3C-928 air-cooled diesel engine, developing 360 or 400 hp. Though other engines, such as Cummins diesel with 410 hp are also available. Engine is located behind and under the cab. Such location prevents damage of the engine and reduces overall height of the vehicle. This military truck has good cross-country performance due to its all-wheel drive system and unique Tatra's independent suspension. Each wheel moves up and down independently, which allows exceptional cross country mobility and higher speeds on rough roads.

   There are variants of this artillery rocket system is available both with unarmored and armored cabs.

   The RM-70 Vampir has an integral reloading unit and carries a full set of reload rockets. A similar reloading system was present on the original RM-70. It takes around 2 minutes to reload all 40 launch tubes. This integral reloading system significantly increases firepower of the vehicle, as the single RM-70 Vampir launcher vehicle can rapidly launch two salvos. The launch tubes can be also reloaded manually by the crew within around 7 minutes. Reloading usually takes remotely from the firing position, in order to avoid counter battery fire.

 

Variants

 

   RM-70 M1 is a version with an armored cab. It provides protection for the crew against small arms fire and artillery shell splinters. Also the cab has an NBC protection system. This artillery system has been exported to Azerbaijan.

   RM-70 Vampir 4D is a version with a different unarmored 4-door cab. It was first publicly revealed in 2017.

   BM-21 MT 4x4 is another new Czech artillery rocket system, though it is smaller. It is based on a Tatra truck with 4x4 configuration and also has a 40-tube launcher unit. However it lacks integral reloading system and does not carry any reload rockets.

 

 

RM-70 Vampir

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RM-70 Vampir

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RM-70 Vampir

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RM-70 Vampir

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RM-70 Vampir

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RM-70 Vampir

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RM-70 Vampir

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Personal appeal from Andrius Genys

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