Defense industry leaders in Serbia presented the home-built modular Oganj self-propelled multiple rocket launcher capable of firing several different guided and unguided artillery rockets or even anti-tank guide missiles.
The new weapon system, called the LRSVM M-18, was unveiled during the visit of the Serbian Minister of Defence, Aleksandar Vulin to the “Nikinci” Weapons and Military Equipment Testing Centre.
Currently, Serbia is carrying out a complex, systematic equipping of the artillery of the Serbian Armed Forces, which was the country priority, so in addition to modernized weapons, the initial unit will get a new fire control system, a reconnaissance vehicle with optoelectronics and other devices and a fire-control computer system for the battery commander, and it will also get a new generation of ammunition, said Assistant Minister for Material Resources, Nenad Miloradović.
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As to the new artillery rocket system, it is a weapon with completely new capabilities of firing all existing types of unguided rocket projectiles, including the 40 km-range projectiles that have already been developed and 50 km-range rocket projectiles that are being developed, including the rocket with flight path correction.
The advanced version of the Oganj system is a Serbian first artillery weapon that can fire guided rockets as well, and as part of the work on the prototype weapon, all sub-systems for preparing, firing and guiding a rocket, such as the ALAS rocket, were integrated.
The ALAS programmable guided missile was launched from the container mounted on the modular “Oganj” for the first time, and the launch was successful, as well as the launch of “grad” rockets.
“This is the basis for further improvement, because the “ALAS” rocket is neither the final nor the most powerful rocket that will be launched from this system. The Military Technical Institute is also developing “Košava 1” and “Košava 2″ rockets, which will increase the range of our missile artillery to over 50 kilometres and they will have warheads of great destructive power, capable of destroying hardened targets and significant stationary objects,” the Assistant Minister for Material Resources pointed out.
Speaking about the importance of today’s tests, Lieutenant Colonel Predrag Puhača from the Development and Equipping Department of the General Staff, pointed out that this was firing from LRSVM M18 artillery weapons – rocket launchers whose development began at the Military Technical Institute two years ago, and now preparations for final testing are nearing completion.
“The weapon is intended for firing at targets at long distances. It has a lightly armoured cabin that protects the crew from shrapnel and rifle ammunition. It allows the use of all available rockets that we have in our armament and those that we will develop. The “ALAS” system is integrated into it – an anti-armour guided rocket,” said Lieutenant Colonel Puhača.
“This is an optical cable guided rocket where there is no possibility of interfering with the rocket during its flight and the operator who launches the rocket in the area of targets chooses the target to hit,” Lieutenant Colonel Puhača emphasized.
As he pointed out, it is expected that it will be introduced into our armaments quickly, and that every LRSVM M-18 will be fitted with the “ALAS” system. He added that this is a weapon that will allow firing at pinpoint targets at long distances, with a high probability of hitting.
The testing and firing practice were also attended by the Head of the Department for Defence Technologies, Major General Mladen Vuruna, the Head of the Development and Equipping Department, Brigadier General Milan Popović, and the Director of the Military Technical Institute, Colonel Bojan Pavković, PhD.