In news- The US is sending its most advanced artillery rocket launcher, HIMARS and munitions to the Ukrainian military in the hope of giving it an edge over Russia.
- An artillery rocket is a weapon that is typically propelled by a solid-fuel motor and can carry a variety of warheads.
- In the 1970s, the United States invested in a new weapon, MLRS (Multiple Launch Rocket System), designed for use in the event that Russian armored vehicles massed for World War III on the border of Western Europe.
- The M270 MLRS launcher was an armored vehicle that could carry two “pods” of munitions.
- Years later, the US introduced a more easily transportable version called HIMARS, for the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System.
- The M142 Himars is a modernised, lighter, and more agile MLRS.
- It has a range of about 50 miles (80 km) and its GPS-guided rockets have more accuracy than its Russian counterparts.
- It also consists of a faster reload system and the launch systems can be moved quickly from one location to another, hence the “high mobility.”
- The M142 consists of one preloaded pod of six 227 mm guided missiles.
- It can also be loaded with an Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) tactical missile, which has a range of 300 km.
- This rocket system will give the Ukrainian military the capability to strike Russian targets that are at distances protected by Russia’s defence systems.