Land Platforms

Turkish 120 mm rifled Weapon Mortar System under test

11 July 2018
A rear view of the BMC Vuran 4×4 MPAV fitted with the Aselsan Alkar 120 mm WMS that fires through open roof hatches. Source: Christopher F Foss

The Turkish Aselsan Alkar 120 mm Weapon Mortar System (WMS) has completed initial firing trials installed in the rear of a BMC Vuran 4×4 multipurpose armoured vehicle (MPAV), Jane’s has learnt.

Prior to this event, firing trials with the Alkar 120 mm WMS were completed from a fixed ground platform in the second half of 2017. Both trials included a full family of 120 mm high-explosive (HE), smoke, and illuminating mortar bombs.

The latest series of BMC Vuran testing included a complete system trial with the computerised fire-control system. According to Aselsan, “development of the Alkar 120 mm WMS will be completed by the end of July 2018”.

For its new role, the Vuran 4×4 MPAV has a modified roof with two power-operated hatches that open left and right to allow the mortar to be fired. In this configuration, when travelling, the Aselsan Alkar 120 mm WMS is virtually indistinguishable from the standard BMC Vuran 4×4 MPAV.

The Aselsan Alkar 120 mm WMS is mounted on a turntable that can be rapidly traversed through a full 360°. The mortar has powered traverse and elevation and is fitted with a computerised fire-control system for greater accuracy and reduced into-action times.

The 120 mm mortar is fitted with a special recoil system so no stabilisers are required to be engaged before the system comes into action.

According to Aselsan, the advanced recoil system reduces the firing shock up to 235 kN, about one-sixth of the firing force before recoil.

The weapon has an automatic ammunition handling system to reduce crew fatigue and increase rate of fire. To operate it, a crew member places a 120 mm mortar bomb, complete with fuze and charge, on a loading tray that then takes the mortar bomb upwards and positions it over the muzzle.

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