Lt. Col. John Lehane, Inspector-Instructor, 2nd Battalion, 14th Marine Regiment, speaks about the Reduced-Range Practice Rockets using HIMARS, during an exercise in Balikatan at Crow Valley, Philippines, April 4, 2016.
HIMARS is an acronym for M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System. It is a light multiple-rocket launcher, usually mounted on a standard truck frame. It carries six rockets or one missile (an MGM-140-ATACMS). Produced by BAE Systems, it can be transported via a C-130. It was first deployed around 2005.
The system has been operational in Afghanistan, and most recently, in Iraq. In 2016, with the launcher based in Jordan, it was used to fire rockets into Syria in support of the Syrian Rebels fighting ISIL.
The HIMARS is usually operated with a group of 3 — Gunner, Driver, and Launcher Chief. Weighing 24,000 pounds with a dimension of 7×2.4×3.2 meters and a range of 480 km the vehicle can each a road speed of 85 kmh.
Further Notes about the HIMARS:
- It uses the same pod as the M270 MLRS
- A pod can hold a single missile or six rockets
- The windows are made of glass and multiple layers of sapphire
- The Singapore Army acquired a package of 18 in 2007 with full operation capability in 2011