Rheinmetall – KMW | The RCH 155 achieves world first fire-on-the-move capability
Defence Redefined
Published on 30/09/2023 at 15:56

German defence manufacturers Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) of the KNDS group and Rheinmetall have announced that their RCH 155 self-propelled howitzer is the world’s first artillery system with fire-on-the-move capabilities.

The RCH 155 self-propelled howitzer, a product of a joint venture, has a two-man crew capacity and uses a fully automated and remote-controlled 155 mm PzH 2000 artillery gun module mounted on an all-terrain 8×8 Boxer armored fighting vehicle chassis.

The RCH 155 is armed with a combat payload of 30 NATO-standard projectiles for the nine-round-per-minute 155mm/L52 main gun and a projectile operational range of 54 km, while it features space for optional self-protection with a weapon station and smoke grenade launching system.

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According to an announcement by KMW, the complete autonomy of the overall system in command, navigation, and fire control as well as its system-inherent stability open up entirely new mission options. Thanks to its network-centric system architecture, the RCH 155 will also be able to implement remote-controlled driving and action in the future.

The large ammunition supply and rapid replenishment, the stable gun platform, maximum aiming precision, and autoloader, combined with autonomy in navigation and fire control, shall make the RCH 155 the new standard for modern wheeled barrelled artillery.

The vehicle also features a fully automated loading system, automated electrical gun laying system, navigation system, fire control computer with integrated ballistics calculation and radio data transmission connection, automatic fire detection and extinguishing system, built-in test equipment system, cooling and heating system, 14.5 mm machine gun and artillery shrapnel ballistic protection, anti-tank and anti-personnel mine protection.

Also read: Rheinmetall | The German PzH 2000 breaks new record after firing 20,000 rounds

The system has previously been tested at the Bundeswehr training tracks with a top on-road speed of 100km/h, a range of 700 kilometers, and is reportedly able to fire upon moving land and sea targets as well as Multiple Round Simultaneous Impact firing capabilities.

Eighteen RCH 155 self-propelled howitzers will be provided to Ukraine as military support services by the Federal Republic of Germany, according to Germany’s bilateral support program.

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