India seeks 105mm gun to operate at 5500m altitude and -20°С
NEW DELHI, ($1=76.09 Indian Rupees) — India is seeking to purchase and arm the artillery divisions of the Indian Army 105mm/37 caliber mounted gun systems. The Ministry of Defense of India has published a request for the acquisition of such a weapon system.
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According to the provided specifications, the required artillery gun must be locally produced [Indian], operate at a high altitude [5,500 meters], and operate at low temperatures [minus 20 degrees Celsius]. The 105mm cannon will be included in the Indian artillery located on the northern border of India, the request said.
The Ministry of Defense of India says that the future artillery system must be highly passable and highly mobile, and must work on the existing mountain roads in northern India. The fire control system [FCS] of the gun must have an integrated inertial navigation system [INS], be able to perform direct and indirect fire, and work in day or night conditions. The gun system should have Built-in Test Facility [BITE] to support fault finding and repairs of the equipment.
The new 105mm/37 caliber mounted gun systems can provide great mobility – such as the 155mm howitzers of the Indian Army do not have. The smaller caliber means that the cannon will be able to be mounted on a larger selection of vehicle models that can be easily moved from one point to another point on India’s northern border.
Lt. General [ret.] VK Chaturvedi said that the mounted gun’s “smaller barrels… may bring down the range which in case of mountains will be enough to reach between 25-30 kilometers [15.53-18.60 miles] as the atmosphere is rarefied.”
India has ten units of the South Korean K9 Thunder self-propelled howitzer. However, India is following the government’s Made in India program, and these ten units were manufactured by the Indian company Larsen & Toubro under license from Hanwha Corporation, the company that makes K9.
The K9 is probably the best self-propelled howitzer in the world. Large range, mobile, and with an excellent rate of fire. Perhaps, for this reason, India is preparing to buy 200 units of the K9, but again to be manufactured by Larsen & Toubro.
However, the K9 is not suitable for the high altitude and low temperatures required by the Indian government in its request for new 105mm/37 caliber mounted gun systems. Military experts say K9 Thunder will most likely be located in the plains and desert regions of India.
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