New Franco-Spanish 120mm mobile rifled mortar reaches 13 km range

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PARIS ($1=0.95 Euros) — The Franco-German project of advanced mobile mortar was presented at the international exhibition for defense and security in Paris – Eurosatory. This is a 120mm mortar integrated on a 4×4 chassis and an integrated auto-aiming mortar carrier that does not require a recoil absorbing mechanism. Two French companies [Thales and Arquus] and one Spanish company [NTGS] are involved in the development of the 120mm Sherpa A2M [Advanced Mobile Mortar].

Photo credit: Thales

The 120mm Sherpa A2M mortar is integrated into the Sherpa family of vehicles from the French company Arquus. Extremely popular in France, these vehicles are used for various modifications such as station wagons, weapon system carriers, police armored vehicles, and assault ladders. Sherpa vehicles weigh up to 11 tons, can carry up to 5 people, and are equipped with the Stanag 4569 protection armor system. The 120mm Sherpa A2M mortar can be transported by air as well as parachuted by a C-130 military transport aircraft.

Photo credit: Arquus

The 120mm Sherpa A2M mortar has four side doors [two pairs on each side]. The wheelbase of the vehicle can be modified as needed: between 3.54 and 3.79 meters.

The Sherpa A2M mortar operates with an efficient guidance mechanism designed by the Spanish company NTGS. NTGS says its product is the first auto-aiming mortar carrier that does not require a recoil absorbing mechanism. However, the Sherpa A2M has an effective targeting mechanism aimed at firing from the ground. This mechanism is known on the market as a 120/81 mm mortar holder. The Spanish system has been used for many years and has been proven in battles around the world. NTGS is known among the military, as the company also specializes in the production of manual 60, 81, and 120mm mortars.

Photo credit: Arquus

Sherpa A2M is equipped with a 120mm threaded mortar developed by the other French company – Thales. The company says that the cut barrel of the latest product is three times more efficient than the mortar barrels on the market. Thales’ involvement as a designer and manufacturer of the system’s main gun ensures that in addition to narcotics, the Sherpa A2M will be able to fire laser-guided ammunition.

The rear of the Sherpa A2M is designed to carry up to 40 mortar shells. Several more can be stored in the cabin. The range of the mortar varies depending on the ammunition used: from 8.2 km to 13 km. It has integrated secondary weapons to protect the crew in close combat. This Hornet Lite RCWS is equipped with a 7.62-machine gun.

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