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Infantry Weapons

Royal Danish Army buys Weibel muzzle velocity radar for mortars

20 March 2020
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The Royal Danish Army is now installing Weibel Scientific’s MVR-700 – a muzzle velocity radar (MVR) – on its recently acquired Elbit Systems/ESL Cardom 10 120 mm muzzle-loaded smoothbore mortars, which arm the service’s Piranha 5 8x8 vehicles.

A total of 12 Cardom 10s have been procured by the Danish Ministry of Defence Acquisition and Logistics Organisation (DALO) and these are fitted with a load-assist device to increase the rate of fire and reduce crew fatigue.

Weibel Scientific developed its family of Doppler-based MVRs using internal research and development funding. For the Danish application, the MVR-700 is mounted parallel to the 120 mm barrel, according to the company.

An STK Land Systems 120 mm Super Rapid Advanced Mortar System MK II fitted with the MVR-700 doppler radar for trials in Slovakia. (Weibul Scientific)An STK Land Systems 120 mm Super Rapid Advanced Mortar System MK II fitted with the MVR-700 doppler radar for trials in Slovakia. (Weibul Scientific)

Muzzle variation of the mortar bomb takes place because of a number of factors, including the variability of the clip-on propellant at the base of the mortar bomb and its temperature, according to a US Army study. Weibel Scientific noted that muzzle velocity and meteorological conditions are the key drivers that can affect accuracy.

In the case of the Royal Danish Army, the MVR-700 is integrated with the on-board computerised fire control system (FCS) and the land navigation system (both inertial navigation and global positioning system). This enables the mortar system to come into action and carry out a rapid target engagement sequence.

Finn Kobbero, regional sales director at Weibel Scientific, said, “Our MVR-700 interfaces to over 20 FCS through a simple interface which can be serial or Ethernet based, dependent on the model.” Kobbero added, “The MVR-700 incorporates … variable frequency, self-calibrating technology, motion compensation, and measurement precision of typically 0.05%.”

If the mortar is not fitted with an on-board FCS computer then the muzzle velocity data can be taken manually from the MVR-700 display and used to calculate firing data manually.

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