Artillery Rockets

  • IASbaba
  • June 4, 2022
  • 0
Science and Technology
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In News: The US is sending four HIMAR systems to Ukraine

What are ‘artillery rockets’?

  • An artillery rocket is a weapon that is typically propelled by a solid-fuel motor and can carry a variety of warheads.
  • In the 1970s, USA developed a new weapon called MLRS, for Multiple Launch Rocket System, designed for use in the event that Russian armored vehicles massed for World War III on the border of Western Europe.
  • Pentagon developed the more advanced version of MLRS, a more easily transportable version called HIMARS, for High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, which is based on a wheeled truck that is much lighter.
  • Unlike its predecessor, the M142 HIMARS truck carries only one pod of munitions, but it can move much faster on and off-road, and can be shipped on a C-130 cargo plane.
  • US is sending four HIMAR systems to Ukraine.

What’s the difference between a rocket and a missile in this context?

  • Generally the word “rocket” is used in a military context to refer to relatively inexpensive unguided weapons powered by solid-fuel motors, while “missile” is generally shorthand for “guided missiles,” more expensive and complicated weapons that use movable fins to steer themselves to their targets and can fly much farther.
  • The Pentagon has already sent short-range, inexpensive and unguided anti-tank weapons that are classified as rockets to Ukraine, like the AT-4, and the longer-range Javelin, which is a guided missile.
  • But in more recent years the military has built weapons it calls “guided rockets” — like GMLRS — which are often older rocket designs upgraded to have guidance systems and movable fins on their nose to steer them.

How powerful are these rockets?

  • Using the HIMARS and GMLRS together can offer an amount of firepower that is similar to an airstrike — all from a mobile platform.
  • The upgrade in explosive power for the Ukrainian military will be profound.

Does Russia have anything similar?

  • The Russian military has primarily used three types of unguided artillery rockets during the war in Ukraine.
  • The largest, the 300 mm Smerch, can fire a guided rocket, which makes it more accurate, and has a range similar to the GMLRS

Do the U.S. rockets have other advantages?

  • There’s one major advantage to the MLRS and HIMARS launchers: They can be fully reloaded within minutes.
  • Both vehicles have a winch that allows them to lower an empty pod to the ground, pick up a new, loaded pod, and pull it into place. The Russian launchers must be manually loaded, tube by tube.

Previous Year Questions (PYQs)

Q.1) With reference to Agni-IV Missile, which of the following statement(s) is/are correct? (2014)

  1. It is surface-to-surface missile.
  2. It is fuelled by liquid propellant only.
  3. It can deliver one tonne nuclear warhead about 7500 km away.

Select the correct answer using the codes given below.

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 1 and 3 only
  4. 1, 2 and 3

Source: Indian Express 

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