Infantry Weapons

IDEX 2017: China develops SR7 rocket launcher

20 February 2017

China North Industries Corporation (NORINCO) has expanded its family of multiple-rocket launchers (MRLs) with the development of the SR7.

The SR7 is a lightweight system that is based on a 6x6 cross-country chassis and is intended to have a high level of mobility; the vehicle features a protected two-door cab.

Mounted on the rear of the platform is the launcher, which appears to be one half of that used in the NORINCO SR5 Universal Artillery Rocket Launcher (UARL).

The SR7's launcher unit can accomodate 122 mm and 220 mm rockets. (IHS Markit/Patrick Allen)The SR7's launcher unit can accomodate 122 mm and 220 mm rockets. (IHS Markit/Patrick Allen)

This is understood to have been developed specifically for the export market rather than for the Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) and known to have been exported to at least one country - Bahrain.

The launcher unit can accommodate one pod of 20 122 mm rockets or one pod of six 220 mm rockets; once these have been fired new pods can be loaded using the on board loading system.

Assuming that the launcher has the same capabilities as the SR5, it will feature a powered traverse section and an elevation of up to 60°.

It is assumed that the launcher can fire the same family of unguided 122 mm rockets as the SR5, which have maximum ranges of 30, 40 and 50 km.

In addition, it can fire a guided 122 mm rocket with a maximum range of 40 km which is fitted with a high-explosive (HE) warhead.

As well as the 122 mm rockets, the SR7 can fire 220 mm unguided rockets with a maximum range of 70 km and guided rockets of this caliber.

MRLs are typically employed as area effect weapons, with a significant number of unguided rockets being launched to saturate the target.

By launching precision guided types, fewer rockets need to be fired to produce the same effect, which has the added benefit of reducing the logistics burden.

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