Artillery: Israeli Lahav MLRS


March 29, 2024: The Israel Defense Force (IDF) used their new Lahav MLRS utilized their new Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) for the first time during the October 2023 battles with Hamas. Lahav is a truck-mounted system that can launch rockets varying in size from 122mm to 370mm from sealed canisters. Lahav is mounted on an American HEMIT 8x8 military truck and entered service in 2020. The first combat use of Lahav involved firing hundreds of rockets at Gaza, including the advanced Romah rockets that could hit any part of Sinai when fired from Israel.

Originally Lahav was supposed to take a year to enter service and replace the American tracked M270 MLRS. Lahav can be prepared for firing within an hour after stopping at a given location. Lahav was capable of faster firing and enhanced accuracy compared to previous M270 launchers. This was demonstrated during combat with Hamas in Gaza. A typical firing mission could be completed in less than a minute. While primarily operating within Israel, Lahav and Israeli soldiers can also move into enemy territories as necessary for missions. Lahav currently fires two types of rockets, Romah and the Ra'am Eitan. The Romah pod carries 18 122mm rockets, each with a 20 kg explosive warhead and range of 35 kilometers. This enables Romah rockets to hit any target in the Gaza Strip. Romah rockets will soon be replaced by more capable Bar rockets. All rockets are stored in waterproof canisters, protecting rockets from the weather and potential damage.

The larger 227mm Ra'am Eitan rockets are launched from pods containing six rockets. These rockets have a range of 40 kilometers and employ cluster submunitions. The older 306mm EXTRA rocket pods contain four rockets, each carrying a warhead with 120 kg of explosives. These rockets have a max range of 150 kilometers. Then there are the 370mm Nitz Dors rockets, which come two to a pod. Each rocket has a warhead with 140 kg of explosives. These rockets have a range of 300 kilometers.

Each HEMITT truck can carry two pods. The truck uses the PULS rocket launcher system that has a rotating mount and space for two rocket pods. HEMITT uses self-deploying stabilizing legs to stabilize the launcher during firing. This makes certain the maximum precision and accuracy. An integral crane enables swift reloading of rocket pods, a process that takes about 10 minutes. The Lahav is equipped with fire control systems, including C4ISTAR capabilities that make possible quick and precise targeting.

The Lahav's advanced navigation systems, incorporating both INS (inertial navigation) and GPS, provides accurate positioning of the vehicle and effective targeting even difficult terrain or bad weather. Control of the vehicle and launcher is centralized within the driver's compartment, which also serves as an operator compartment, providing added protection for personnel against gunfire or shell and bomb fragments.




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