Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS)
DISTRIBUTION RESTRICTION. Distribution authorized to theDOD and DOD contractors only based on included procedures and technical data. This determination was made on 29 September 2005. Other requests must be referred to the Directorate of Training and Doctrine, 1210 NW Schimmelpfennig Road 167, ATTN: ATSF-DD, Fort Sill, OK 73503-9035.
DESTRUCTION NOTICE: Destroy by any method that will prevent disclosure of contents or reconstruction of the document.
Army Knowledge Online (www.us.army.mil) and
General Dennis J. Reimer Training and Doctrine
Distribution Restriction: Distribution authorized to the DOD and DOD contractors only based on included procedures and technical data. This determination was made on 29 September 2005. Other requests must be referred to the Directorate of Training and Doctrine, 1210 NW Schimmelpfennig Road 167, ATTN: ATSF-DD, Fort Sill, OK 73503-9035.
Destruction Notice: Destroy by any method that will prevent disclosure of contents or reconstruction of the document.
*This publication supersedes FM 6-60, 23 April 1996. Field Manual
No. 3-09.60 (FM 6-60)
Headquarters Department of the Army Washington, DC, 12 August 2008
Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS)
PREFACE... ix Chapter 1 SYSTEM DESCRIPTION ... 1-1
Section I – Introduction ... 1-1 MLRS Employment Concept ... 1-1 System Components ... 1-1 Section II – Launcher and Subsystems ... 1-3 M270 Launcher ... 1-3 M270A1 Launcher ... 1-6 M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System ... 1-8 Section III – MLRS Family of Munitions (MFOM) ... 1-14 Launch Pod ... 1-14 Missile/Launch Pod Assembly Trainer ... 1-15 Rockets ... 1-15 Missiles ... 1-20 Section IV – Associated Equipment ... 1-26 Ammunition Resupply Vehicle and Trailer (HEMTT/HEMAT) ... 1-26 HIMARS Resupply Vehicle and Resupply Trailer ... 1-27 Command and Control System ... 1-30 AFATS ... 1-30 Survey Equipment ... 1-30 Section V – Radar ... 1-31
AN/TPQ-36 Radar ... 1-31 AN/TPQ-37 Radar ... 1-32 Chapter 2 THE MLRS BATTALION ... 2-1 MLRS Battalion ... 2-1 Headquarters and Headquarters Battery ... 2-2 Firing Battery ... 2-5 Forward Support Company ... 2-7 Battalion Duties ... 2-7 Firing Battery ... 2-12 Forward Support Company ... 2-15 Chapter 3 EMPLOYMENT ... 3-1 Section I – Operations in War ... 3-1 General Employment Considerations ... 3-1 TASK Organization ... 3-8 Target Acquisition Employment Options ... 3-10 Battalion Commander ... 3-11 Liaison Function Options ... 3-12 Operations with the Marine Corps ... 3-12 Offensive Operations ... 3-13 Nonstandard Employment Techniques ... 3-19 Target Acquisition and Sensor System Interface ... 3-23 Roles of MLRS Unit... 3-25 Sustainment Operations with the Marine Corps ... 3-29 Chapter 4 MLRS UNIT OPERATIONS ... 4-1 Section I – Battalion Operations ... 4-1 Battalion Command Post and Operations Center ... 4-1 Automated Systems ... 4-6 Battalion ALOC ... 4-10 Section II – MLRS Firing Battery Operations ... 4-10 Battery Headquarters ... 4-10 Battery Headquarters Operations ... 4-11 Battery Defense ... 4-12 Tactical Movement ... 4-14 Section III – Firing Platoon Operations ... 4-17 Platoon Headquarters ... 4-17 OPAREA ... 4-17 Launcher Survey Control ... 4-21 Launcher Response Posture ... 4-24 Detachment of the MLRS Firing Platoon ... 4-28 Section IV – Reconnaissance, Selection, and Occupation of Position ... 4-28 Planning ... 4-28 RSOP Process ... 4-28 Masking Data ... 4-30 Section V – Contingency Operations ... 4-31 Force Projection ... 4-31
Deployment ... 4-33 Special Operations ... 4-34 Chapter 5 DELIVERY OF FIRES ... 5-1 Section I – Introduction ... 5-1 Organization and Structure... 5-1 Fire Direction Centers ... 5-2 Section II – Accurate Predicted Fire ... 5-3 Target Size and Location ... 5-3 Launcher Location ... 5-4 Weapon and Ammunition Information ... 5-6 Meteorological Information ... 5-6 Meteorological Message Checking Procedures ... 5-7 Section III – Tactical and Technical Fire Direction ... 5-9 Tactical Fire Direction ... 5-9 Technical Fire Direction ... 5-13 Section IV – Automated Mission Processing ... 5-13 Automated Tactical Fire Direction ... 5-14 Fire Mission Cycle ... 5-21 Automated AFOM Processing ... 5-23 Fire Mission Execution ... 5-24 Fire Support Planning Function ... 5-28 MLRS Fire Plan Processing ... 5-30 Appendix A AERIAL TRANSPORT OF MLRS AMMUNITION AND EQUIPMENT ... A-1 Appendix B ROCKET BALLISTICS ... B-1 Appendix C MLRS BATTALION AND BATTERY TACTICAL STANDING OPERATING
PROCEDURES ... C-1 Appendix D LNO CHECKLIST ... D-1 Appendix E MLRS COMMAND POSTS ... E-1 Appendix F HASTY SURVEY TECHNIQUE—GRAPHIC RESECTION ... F-1 Appendix G M26, M26A1/A2, AND M28A1/A2 ROCKET CREST CLEARANCE TABLES G-1 Appendix H FIRING SAFETY ... H-1 Appendix I ROCKET BALLISTIC ALGORITHM SOLUTIONS... I-1 Appendix J JSTARS CGS INTEROPERABILITY PROCEDURES FOR THE MLRS
BATTALION ... J-1 Appendix K ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS ... K-1 Appendix L RAID PLANNING CHECKLISTS ... L-1 Appendix M ATACMS BLOCK II EMPLOYMENT ... M-1 GLOSSARY ... Glossary-1 REFERENCES ... References-1 INDEX ... Index-1
Figure 1-1. M270 Launcher ... 1-3 Figure 1-2. M142 HIMARS Launcher ... 1-9 Figure 1-3. M142 Chassis Frame ... 1-9 Figure 1-4. Crew Cab ... 1-10 Figure 1-5. Firing Platform ... 1-11 Figure 1-6. Sponsons ... 1-12 Figure 1-7. Turret Assembly ... 1-12 Figure 1-8. Base Assembly ... 1-13 Figure 1-9. M142 Reload System ... 1-13 Figure 1-10. Launch Pod ... 1-14 Figure 1-11. M26 Rocket... 1-15 Figure 1-12. M77 Submunition ... 1-16 Figure 1-13. M30 GMLRS Rocket ... 1-18 Figure 1-14. M31 GMLRS Rocket ... 1-19 Figure 1-15. M39/M39A1 Missile ... 1-21 Figure 1-16. M74 Submunition ... 1-21 Figure 1-17. Block II Missile ... 1-23 Figure 1-18. BAT Submunition ... 1-24 Figure 1-19. M985 HEMTT ... 1-26 Figure 1-20. M989A1 HEMAT ... 1-26 Figure 1-21. M1084A1 Resupply Vehicle ... 1-27 Figure 1-22. M1095 Resupply Trailer ... 1-27 Figure 1-23. MTS Control Station ... 1-29 Figure 1-24. MTS Mobile Unit ... 1-28 Figure 1-25. MTS Mobile Unit in the RSV ... 1-29 Figure 1-26. MTS Transceiver Mount ... 1-29 Figure 2-1. MLRS/HIMARS Battalion Organization ... 2-1 Figure 2-2. Headquarters and Headquarters Battery ... 2-2 Figure 2-3. MLRS Firing Battery ... 2-6 Figure 3-1. Example: MLRS Platoon Operating Base with Internal Firing Points ... 3-28 Figure 4-1. TOC Radio and AFATDS Quantities ... 4-2 Figure 4-2. Special Formations ... 4-16 Figure 4-3. Operational Area ... 4-18 Figure 4-4. Masking ... 4-31 Figure 4-5. Urban Targeting Solution ... 4-35 Figure 5-2. Computer Meteorological Message ... 5-8 Figure 5-3. Fire Mission Execution ... 5-14 Figure 5-4. AFOM Platoon Air Hazard Area ... 5-16 Figure 5-5. Default Block I and 1A Target Air Hazard Area ... 5-17
Figure 5-6. Fire Mission Support Function ... 5-18 Figure 5-7. DA Form 7232-R (Example) ... 5-22 Figure 5.8. DA Form 7233-R (Example) ... 5-22 Figure 5-9. Fire Planning and Scheduling ... 5-29 Figure A-1. Launch Pod Container with Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets or
Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets / Guided Missile Launch Assembly Pods with Army Tactical Missile System Missiles, One
Container ... A-4 Figure A-2. Launch Pod Container with Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets or
Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets / Guided Missile Launch Assembly Pods with Army Tactical Missile System Missiles, Two
Containers ... A-6 Figure A-3. Launch Pod Container with Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets or
Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets / Guided Missile Launch Assembly Pods with Army Tactical Missile System Missiles, Four
Containers ... A-9 Figure B-1. Bias and Precision Errors ... B-2 Figure E-1. Vehicles at the MLRS Battalion CP, Option 1—Dual CPs ... E-1 Figure E-2. MLRS Battalion TOC—Side-by-Side Configuration ... E-3 Figure E-3. Vehicles at the MLRS Battalion Trains, Option 1—Dual CPs ... E-4 Figure E-4. MLRS Battalion ALOC in Built-up Trucks ... E-7 Figure E-5. MLRS Battalion ALOC in a General Purpose Medium Tent... E-7 Figure E-6. MLRS Battery CP—Split HQ ...E-10 Figure E-7. MLRS Battery Operations Center in Carrier, CP ...E-12 Figure E-8. MLRS Battery Trains —Split HQ ...E-13 Figure E-9. Battery LOC ...E-14 Figure E-10. Vehicles at the MLRS Platoon HQ ...E-14 Figure E-11. MLRS POC in C2V ...E-15 Figure G-1. Mil Relation Formula ... G-1 Figure G-2. Effective Angle of Site ... G-2 Figure G-3. Crest Clearance ... G-2 Figure I-1. M26 Low Quadrant Elevation Trajectories. Conditions: BA-ER-D, sea
level standard (no wind). For illustration purposes only. ... I-9 Figure I-2. M26 High Quadrant Elevation Trajectories. Conditions: BA-ER-D, sea
level standard (no wind). For illustration purposes only. ... I-18 Figure I-3. M26A1/2 Trajectories ... I-30 Figure I-4. M26A1/2 (High Quadrant Elevation) Trajectories ... I-45 Figure I-5. M28A1/A2 RRPR Trajectories ... I-49 Figure J-1. JSTARS MTI Capabilities ... J-1 Figure J-2. JSTARS SAR Capabilities ... J-2 Figure J-3. Decentralized Mission Communications Channels for MLRS/HIMARS ... J-5 Figure J-4. Example of Block I/IA Amended At My Command Mission MLRS/HIMARS ... J-7 Figure K-1. Environmental Laws and Regulations ... K-5 Figure M-1. AFOM Platoon Air Hazard Area ... M-2
Figure M-2. Typical Block II Target Air Hazard Area ... M-3 Figure M-3. Missile Mission and Flight Profile ... M-4 Figure M-4. BAT Submunition Dispense Sequence ... M-4 Figure M-5. BAT Target Attack Profile ... M-5 Figure M-6. BAT Engagement Sequence ... M-5 Figure M-7. Manual Calculation of Trigger Events Job Aid ... M-9 Figure M-8. Block II Target Engagement Process ... M-10 Figure M-9. Block II Mission Functional Flow ... M-13 Figure M-10. Block II On-Call Target Establishment Procedures ... M-15 Figure M-11. Block II Trigger Event Establishment Procedures ... M-16 Figure M-12. AFATDS Trigger Event Window ... M-18 Figure M-13. BAT Acoustic Footprint ... M-21 Figure M-14. Block II Linear Target Segmentation—AFATDS View ... M-22 Figure M-15. Target Segmentation in NAI and TAI ... M-22 Figure M-16. Target Dispersal Patterns ... M-24
Table 1-1. M270A1 Launcher Characteristics ... 1-6 Table 1-2. MFOM Characteristics ... 1-19 Table 1-3. ATACMS Family of Munitions Characteristics ... 1-26 Table 1-4. Estimated Position Error ... 1-31 Table 3-1. Block I, Block IA, Block II and M48/M57 Comparison ... 3-4 Table 3-2. Launcher Capabilities ... 3-6 Table 3-3. Range Comparison ... 3-6 Table 3-4. Positioning the Battalion Commander ... 3-11 Table 3-5. Comparison of MLRS Operating Base Techniques ... 3-27 Table 4-1. Appliqué ... 4-9 Table 4-2. Navigation ... 4-23 Table 4-3. Alignment Time ... 4-24 Table 4-4. Response Postures ... 4-25 Table 4-5. GPS Initialization States ... 4-26 Table 4-6. MLRS Contingency Packages ... 4-34 Table 5-1. Required Accuracies ... 5-4 Table 5-2. System Accuracy ... 5-5 Table 5-3. Position Specifications ... 5-5 Table 5-4. Meteorological Message Areas of Validity ... 5-7 Table 5-5. MLRS Risk Estimate Distances (Training Only) ... 5-13 Table 5-6. Ammunition Selection Matrix ... 5-20 Table 5-7. Fire Plan Change Reaction Times ... 5-31 Table A-1. Transportability by Aircraft ... A-2
Table A-2. Launch Pod Container (LPC) with Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) Rockets or Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (G-MLRS) Rockets / Guided Missile Launch Assembly (GMLA) Pods with Army Tactical
Missile System (ATACMS) Missiles, One Container Two Containers ... A-3 Table A-3. Launch Pod Container with Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets or
Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets / Guided Missile Launch Assembly Pods with Army Tactical Missile System Missiles, Two
Containers ... A-5 Table A-4. Launch Pod Container with Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets or
Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System Rockets / Guided Missile Launch Assembly Pods with Army Tactical Missile System Missiles, Four
Containers ... A-7 Table E-1. Personnel at the MLRS Battalion CP, Option 1—Dual CPs ... E-1 Table E-2. MLRS Battalion TOC Shifts by Duty Position ... E-3 Table E-3. Personnel at MLRS Battalion Trains, Option 1—Dual CPs ... E-4 Table E-4. MLRS Battalion ALOC Shifts by Duty Position ... E-6 Table E-5. Forward Support Company with the MLRS Battalion ... E-7 Table E-6. Personnel at the MLRS Battery CP Split HQ ...E-10 Table E-7. MLRS BOC Shifts by Duty Position ...E-11 Table E-8. Personnel at the MLRS Battery Trains ...E-13 Table E-9. MLRS Battery LOC Shifts by Duty Position ... E-13 Table E-10. Personnel at the MLRS Platoon HQ ... . E-15 Table E-11. MLRS POC Shifts by Duty Position ...E-15 Table G-1. M26 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: Sea Level) ... G-3 Table G-2. M26 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 400 m ASL) ... G-7 Table G-3. M26 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 800 m ASL) ... G-11 Table G-4. M26 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 1,200 m ASL) ... G-15 Table G-5. M26 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 3,048 m ASL) ... G-19 Table G-6. M26A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: Sea Level) ... G-23 Table G-7. M26A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 400 m ASL).. ... G-28 Table G-8. M26A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 800 m ASL).. ... G-34 Table G-9. M26A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 1,200 m ASL) .... G-40 Table G-10. M26A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 3,048 m
ASL) ... G-46 Table G-11. M28A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: Sea Level).. ... G-52 Table G-12. M28A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 400 m ASL) .. .. G-56 Table G-13. M28A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 800 m ASL). .... G-60 Table G-14. M28A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 1,200 m
ASL) ... G-64 Table G-15. M28A1/A2 Minimum Planning Range to Clear a Crest (ALT: 3,048 m
ASL) ... G-68 Table I-1. M26 (Low Quadrant Elevation) Rocket Trajectory Data ... I-1 Table I-2. M26 (High Quadrant Elevation) Rocket Trajectory Data ... I-10 Table I-3. M26A1/2 (Low Quadrant Elevation) Rocket Trajectory Data ... I-19
Table I-4. M26A1/2 (High Quadrant Elevation) Rocket Trajectory Data ... I-31 Table I-5. M28A1/A2 Rocket (Reduced Range, Practice) Ballistic Algorithm Solutions ... ..I-46 Table K-1. Material Safety Data Sheet ... K-3 Table K-2. Regulatory Training Requirements ... K-6 Table K-3. Common Environmental Hazards ... K-8 Table K-4. Environmental-related Controls ... K-9 Table M-1. Planned Target Location to Engagement Trigger Events Distance ... M-8 Table M-2. AFATDS Target Type/Subtypes Applicable to Block II ... M-14 Table M-3. Engagement of Targets with Gaps Between Subunits ... M-17 Table M-4. Block II (with Basic BAT) Target Area No-Go Environmental Conditions ... M-23
This publication is designed primarily for the multiple launch rocket system (MLRS) battalion, battery, and platoon. It is also a guide for corps and division Fire Cells/Fires Elements (FC/FEs), fires brigade (FIB), Marine artillery regiments and their staffs, and fire support coordinators and their supported commanders and staffs. This publication sets forth the doctrine pertaining to the organization, equipment, command and control, operations, and tactics, techniques, and procedures for the MLRS battalion, battery, and platoon. It establishes the responsibilities and general duties of key personnel by focusing on essentials of how the MLRS unit fights. It keys the MLRS battalion, battery, and platoon leaders to those areas that must be trained to win the fight. This publication is compatible with full spectrum operations - the Army's operational concept discussed in FM 3-0 Operations.. It does not stand alone. It should be used with equipment technical manuals, soldier’s manuals, and trainer’s guides.
Tables of organization and equipment (TOE) are based on the doctrinal tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP) outlined in this publication. The approved TOEs detail manpower and equipment authorizations for United States Army units. However, some of the required positions outlined in chapter 2 may not be resourced as Army units organize under modification tables of organization and equipment (MTOEs). To determine manpower and equipment authorizations for a specific unit, refer to the MTOE for that unit.
This publication applies to the Active Army, the Army National Guard (ARNG)/Army National Guard of the United States (ARNGUS), and the United States Army Reserve (USAR) unless otherwise stated.
The proponent of this publication is the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC). The U.S. Army Field Artillery School is the preparing agency. Send comments and recommendations on DA Form 2028 (Recommended Changes to Publications and Blank Forms) to Directorate of Training and Doctrine 1210 NW Schimmelpfennig Road, Suite 250 ATTN: ATSF-DD, Fort Sill, OK 73503-9035 or email to email@example.com.
This chapter implements STANAG 2934, chapter 11.
The MLRS is designed to attack the enemy throughout the supported commander’s operations Area. Complementing cannon artillery and other fire support assets, MLRS has an all-weather, long-range capability, and a full suite of munitions. The MLRS battalion can be assigned or attached to a fires brigade (FIB).
SECTION I – INTRODUCTION
MLRS EMPLOYMENT CONCEPT
1-1. The capabilities of MLRS make it one of the most unique field artillery (FA) weapon systems available for both joint and combined arms operations. Its range, mobility, and lethality allow it to execute the full spectrum of fire support—providing close support to maneuver units, protecting the force with counter fire, and attacking operational targets for the division, corps, Marine air ground task force (MAGTF), or joint task force commander and in support of theater missile defense (TMD).
1-2. Regardless of the tactical mission, MLRS units are positioned and fight well forward and use their “shoot-and-scoot” capability to improve survivability. Forward positioning is critical to accomplishing unit missions. When providing support in the offense, MLRS units move to best support the maneuver forces, stopping to fire as required, and then move rapidly to continue supporting the formation. In the defense, these systems may support maneuver units by moving laterally along the forward line of own troops (FLOT). This allows MLRS units to take maximum advantage of their range to protect maneuver units from the destructive effects of the enemy's indirect fire systems. The mobility and massive firepower of the MLRS make it well-suited to augment other artillery fires supporting cavalry units engaged in operations such as screening, covering force, and movement to contact.
1-3. The 70-kilometer (km) range of the guided MLRS (GMLRS) rocket and the 300-kilometer range of the Block IA Army tactical missile system (ATACMS) provide the brigade, division, corps, MAGTF, and joint commanders with a long range strike capability. To support strike missions, MLRS units are positioned close to the FLOT, and in some cases beyond the FLOT, to engage the enemy at maximum ranges and to continue to attack the enemy throughout the depth of the battlefield. The MLRS units assigned the mission of firing ATACMS in support of a joint force commander will often operate in a brigade combat team (BCT) area of operation (AO). Intermixed with maneuver and cannon units, these MLRS units continually coordinate for positions within the BCT sector.
1-4. The MLRS plays a critical role in contingency operations because it provides a massive infusion of combat power in small, rapidly deployable force packages. MLRS units are a logical choice to provide fires for initial entry forces because of the lethality of the MLRS family of munitions (MFOM) coupled with the air deployability of the system on a variety of aircraft.
1-6. The M270 launcher is a self-propelled armored rocket and missile-firing platform with a crew of 3 (section chief, gunner, and driver). The launcher is composed of the M993 extended Bradley tracked carrier and the M269 launcher module (LM). The LM contains a built-in self-loading system that holds either 2 launch pod containers (LPCs) or 2 guided missile launch assemblies (GMLAs), but not a mix of both (each bay of the launcher must be loaded with the same type munitions of the same Department of Defense [DOD] accounting code [DODAC] or J-code). The LPC holds 6 rockets, and the GMLA holds 1 missile for an onboard firing capability of 12 rockets or 2 missiles.
1-7. Each launcher has the onboard capability to receive a fire mission, determine launcher location, compute firing data, orient on the target, and fire. The M270 carrier cab houses the man-machine interface for the fire control system (FCS). The FCS computes firing data that is applied to the LM via the stabilization reference package/position determining system (SRP/PDS) and the LM launcher drive system (LDS). The components apply position survey, vehicle heading reference, and aiming stabilization. The system uses standard Army communications systems to transmit and receive digital communications. Once laid and armed, the launcher can fire—
• 12 rockets in less than 60 seconds at up to 6 aim points. • 2 missiles in less than 20 seconds at 1 or 2 aim points.
1-8. The M270A1 Launcher is an improved version of the M270 launcher using the fire control system M270A1 (FCS). The FCS replaces maintenance intensive hardware and software and provides support for MLRS family of munitions (MFOM) using a global positioning system (GPS) for in flight trajectory correction. The launcher’s GPS supplements the vehicle’s existing inertial position-navigation system. The M270A1 FCS modification upgrades the electronic and navigation equipment, reduces operations and sustainment costs, and revises the software architecture.
1-9. The M270A1 FCS reduces fire mission and reload cycle times. This is achieved by providing a faster drive system that moves simultaneously in azimuth and elevation. The M270A1 FCS decreases the traverse time from stowed position to worst-case aim-point by approximately 85 percent. The M270A1 FCS also decreases the mechanical system contribution to reload time by 38 percent. The reduced time spent at the launch and reload points increases the survivability of the launcher crew and associated rearm personnel. Once laid and armed, the launcher can fire:
• 12 rockets in less than 60 seconds at up to 12 aim-points. • 2 missiles in less than 20 seconds at 1 or 2aim-points.
1-10. Each LPC holds 6 rockets, and each GMLA holds 1 missile. The pods are stenciled with the DOD identification code (DODIC). This is the same code that is displayed on the fire control panel (FCP) when ammunition status is displayed to the launcher crewmembers.
1-11. The ammunition resupply capability for the M270/M270A1 configured MLRS units is provided by the heavy expanded mobility tactical truck (HEMTT) M985 and the heavy expanded mobility ammunition trailer (HEMAT) M989A1. Each can carry 4 rocket/missile pods for a total of 48 rockets or 8 missiles in a HEMTT and HEMAT load. M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) configured MLRS units have the M1084A1 with material handling equipment (MHE) resupply vehicle (RSV) and M1095 resupply trailer (RST). Each can carry 2 rocket/missile pods for a total of 24 rockets or 4 missiles in a RSV and RST load.
1-12. The MLRS fire direction center (FDC) has an automated command, control, (C2) and communications system to provide command and control of subordinate launchers and to facilitate communication on the battlefield. Major components of the C2 system are the FCS located in the launcher and the AFATDS located at the platoon/battery.
SECTION II – LAUNCHER AND SUBSYSTEMS
1-13. The M270 launcher is a highly mobile, lightly armored, tracked carrier vehicle with an LM mounted on the vehicle bed (see figure 1-1). The launcher consists of a 3-man crew (section chief, gunner, and driver). Personal equipment is stored in the crew's equipment storage containers located in the carrier under the LM cage.
Figure 1-1. M270 Launcher
1-14. The carrier vehicle is a longer version of the Bradley fighting vehicle with nearly 80 percent common components. It is 6.8 meters (22 feet, 6 inches) long, 2.6 meters (8 feet, 9 inches) high, and 2.597 meters (8 feet, 6 inches) wide. When loaded with M26 rocket LPCs, the launcher weighs approximately 24,036 kilograms (52,990 pounds). It can climb 60 percent slopes, traverse a 40 percent side slope, ford 1.1 meters (40 inches) of water, and climb 1-meter vertical walls. The launcher has a cruising range of 483 kilometers (300 miles) and can be transported by C-17 and larger cargo aircraft (see appendix A). The vehicle cab is constructed of aluminum armor plate, providing ballistic protection to the crew. It is fitted with an M13A1 gas particulate filter unit that protects the crew from chemical and biological agents and radioactive particles. It also has a vehicle cab overpressure system to protect the crew from toxic rocket and missile exhaust.
1-15. The launcher module (LM) consists of 2 sections: a mechanical section and an electrical section. These sections work together to perform all firing and non-firing functions.
LM Mechanical Section
1-16. The mechanical section consists of base, turret, and cage assemblies. The base assembly provides for the physical mounting of the LM to the carrier. Both the turret and base assemblies house the electronics and hydraulics of the LDS that actually perform the rotation and elevation functions of the LM. The cage assembly performs 2 important functions. First, the structure of the cage assembly aligns, holds, and protects the launch pods. Second, 2 boom and hoist assemblies mounted in the cage assembly give the launcher crew a built-in ammunition loading and unloading capability.
LM Electrical Section
1-17. The electrical section consists of 3 subsystems: the primary power supply, the communications system, and the FCS.
Primary Power Supply
1-18. The primary power supply is the source of power for all launcher equipment. It uses standard military lead acid batteries to provide 24 volts of power to the launcher components. It also controls the distribution of power through the use of switching relays.
1-19. The launcher communications system includes a single-channel ground and airborne radio system (SINCGARS), AN/VRC-92F, with embedded communications security (COMSEC) capability. Each crewmember has a combat vehicle crewman (CVC) helmet that is connected to an AN/VIC-1 or AN/VIC-3 intercom system.
FCS M270 Launcher
1-20. The FCS functions with the other launcher components to provide overall control of the LM. It monitors, coordinates, and controls all electronic devices used during a launch cycle. The FCS consists of the FCP, electronics unit (EU, fire control unit (FCU), boom controller (BC), short/no-voltage tester (SNVT), SRP/PDS, payload interface module (PIM), and communications processor (CMP).
• Fire control panel. The FCP, located in the center of the carrier cab in front of the gunner's seat, has a data entry keyboard for manual entry operations and for message menu selection. The panel gives alphanumeric displays in simple language. Located next to the data keys are built-in test (BIT) indicator lamps for line replaceable units (LRU). These allow rapid detection and isolation of faults in the FCS.
• Electronics unit. The EU contains the computer program and data processing electronics to receive, compute, and distribute fire mission parameters. The EU holds all current weapon files and operational data for the launch and ballistic computation programs in its “bubble” memory (permanent, nonvolatile). However, only those munitions programs that have been moved into the EU random access memory (RAM) can be used by the launcher FCS to compute launch and other fire mission data. The EU automatically identifies munitions type and copies necessary weapon files from bubble to RAM. If the proper software is not loaded, the crew can use the program load unit (PLU) to load required munitions data into the EU.
• Fire control unit. The FCU contains the electronic circuits that change the EU outputs into control signals for other launcher components. It also takes inputs from the other components and changes them into signals the EU can use.
• Boom controller. The BC permits remote control of the loading and off-loading functions and positioning of the LM for maintenance.
• Short/no-voltage tester. The SNVT is a built-in test device used during loading operations. It is used to test the FCS W19 umbilical cables for stray voltage or static electricity. The test ensures that the cables are safe to connect to the loaded launch pods.
• Stabilization reference package/position determining system. The SRP/PDS is composed of 2 integrated subsystems that are housed in separate compartments: the SRP and the PDS. The SRP uses an electrically driven north-seeking gyrocompass. The SRP provides heading, elevation, and launcher slope. The PDS uses 2 encoders on the vehicle final drives and orientation data from the SRP to determine position location.
• Payload interface module. The PIM provides communications power and interface between the loaded launch pods and the EU. Initial input of the EU munitions programs requires use of the PLU and the PIM. If there is a PIM failure, the M270 can still execute rocket missions.
• Communications processor. The CMP controls the flow of the digital coded audio tone messages sent and received by the launcher communications-FCS interface. It is designed to ensure that the
FCS does not acknowledge, nor allow itself to be disrupted by, digital messages not addressed to that launcher. It also rejects weak or garbled signals.
1-21. The launcher FCS provides the link among the crew, external digital message sources, and the launcher components. It performs the following significant functions:
• Computes firing data for all fire missions.
• Lays the LM and sets fuzes or programs warheads, as required. • Monitors and integrates all onboard sensor data.
• In conjunction with the launcher communications system, provides a digital interface between the launcher crew and the command and control elements.
• Monitors the status of built-in tests.
• Enables the crew to control launcher components. • Controls LM operations.
1-22. The FCS receives data input in the following ways:
• Current mission data are input automatically through digital-coded, audio-tone, radio messages, or manually through the FCP keyboard.
• The EU munitions programs are input from a cassette through a PLU.
1-23. The PLU is an electronic device that programs the EU memory. The unit mounts a cassette containing operational program data. The PLU is connected to the EU through the PIM interface connector W31P2 using the PLU cable assembly. The PLU requires 22 to 25 minutes to transfer an entire cassette of data.
1-24. Data communication is the most common and preferred method of input to the FCS. Through radios, the FCS can communicate digitally with the platoon, battery, or battalion AFATDS. The FCS can receive MLRS and meteorology (MET) message category formats as well as the SYS;PTM message. Secure data digital communication between the observers and a launcher FCS must be routed through an AFATDS because message formats are not compatible. The FCS allows the crew to send and receive fixed-format messages and free-text messages.
1-25. The primary means of communication is frequency modulated (FM) secure data; however, FM voice secure communication is available as a backup. In case of data communication failure or when operating voice, the crew can manually enter all data elements through the FCP keyboard.
1-26. The EU automatically monitors, integrates, and computes data from other FCS launcher electronic components. It continuously monitors the SRP/PDS data and computes launcher heading (travel direction), location, and altitude. The FCS determines the firing data when the target information is received. When the crew enters the appropriate mission command, the FCS commands the LM to lay on the required launch azimuth and elevation, and set the rocket fuze times or program the warheads. The FCS fires the rockets or missiles when commanded by the gunner through the FCP.
1-27. The FCS continuously checks its internal components and those of the LM. These checks are made throughout the mission cycle. If a malfunction is detected, the crewmembers are notified by a fault message prompt or LRU bit light on the FCP.
1-28. The FCS can currently operate in 5 different language formats: U.S.-English, United Kingdom-English, German, French, and Italian.
Note: The launcher is unable to fire the mission if a malfunction occurs in a launcher FCS; that is, in the FCP, EU, FCU, or SRP/PDS. Because no backup means exist to fire the launcher manually, the fire mission must be redirected to an operational launcher for completion.
1-29. The M270A1 launcher (see table 1-1) is a combined fielding of the LMS and the FCS. The LMS drastically reduces fire mission and reload cycle times. It allows the LM to elevate and traverse simultaneously at an increased speed. The LMS provides the following operational enhancements:
• Rapid response to time-sensitive targets. Reduces time from launcher lay to aimpoint by 85 percent (time reduced from 93 seconds to 16 seconds for a maximum range mission).
• Increased survivability due to less time at firing points and reload points. • Increased rates of fire.
1-30. The FCS mitigates obsolescence and reduces operations and sustainment costs by changing the MLRS FCS. Incorporating the GPS and decentralizing the weapon system command function enhances operational performance of the launcher. The FCS is designed to conduct self-diagnosis of its associated components.
1-31. To more adequately support the M270A1 launcher, the M993A1 carrier has been upgraded with 9 hardware improvements plus a monitoring and sensor system (Centry) to become the M993A1. The Centry system consists of electrical sensors interacting with the carrier’s engine and transmission to provide better performance and improved troubleshooting procedures for maintainers.
Table 1-1. M270A1 Launcher Characteristics
Weight (air trans) 19,414 kg 42,800 lb
Width 2,972 mm 9 ft, 11 in
Length 6,942 mm 22 ft, 9 in
Height (stowed) 2,666 mm 8 ft, 9 in
Height (full elevation) 5,920 mm 19 ft, 5 in
Included in launcher weight: ½ tank of fuel
Radios and mounts, antennas and mounts, cabling
Not included in launcher weight: CVC helmets for VIC-3
Basic issue items
Rocket pods, M/LPA trainers
1-32. The M270A1 FCS functions with the other launcher components to provide overall control of the LM. It monitors, coordinates, and controls all electronic devices used during a launch cycle. The FCS consists of the Low Cost Fire Control Panel (LCFCP) which is comprised of three major components which includes Gunners Display Unit (GDU),Tactical Processer Unit (TPU), with Mass Storage Unit (MSU) allowing the operator to interface with the FCS which includes the Improved Weapon Interface Unit (IWIU), the Boom Controller(BC), the Position Navigation Unit (PNU), the Power Switching Unit (PSU), the launcher interface unit (LIU) (with power management unit, main processor and communications processor), and the maintenance support device-field ready (MSD-FR).
• Gunners Display Unit. The GDU, located in the center of the carrier cab in front of the gunner's seat, has a high-resolution display, full text keyboard, and audio/video alarms. It provides system interface to the mass storage unit that provides nonvolatile storage for system software and database information.
• Power switching unit. The PSU which replaces the (EB) the Electronics Box and provides the
vehicle power source interface and high current power switching and distribution. It is controlled by the LIU.
• Launcher interface unit. The LIU aims and controls the LM. It provides interface for load/unload
operations, and provides embedded communications processing functions. It oversees the overall operations of the FCS to include providing system power and communication (internal and external) management functions. The LIU interfaces directly with the M270A1 LMS and provides the
stabilization and control functions. In addition, the LIU provides control functions for the boom and hoist features in support of reload operations.
• Improved Weapon interface unit. The IWIU contains the computer program and data processing electronics to receive, compute, and distribute fire mission parameters. It calculates the ballistic algorithm, downloads data to MFOM, performs SNVT functions, and provides ground power.
• Position navigation unit. The PNU provides launcher position and navigation data. During fire missions, the PNU provides the FCS with location, attitude, and launcher rate data for use in computing ballistics and aiming the LM. The PNU contains an embedded GPS receiver to enhance its inertial performance and provide effective land navigation for the launcher. The reference package of the PNU is capable of alignment on the move, a process that takes approximately 15 minutes as long as the vehicle remains in motion. Stationary alignment time can be as long as 5 minutes or as short as 2 minutes and 30 seconds, depending on initialization data and conditions. The PDS requires manual updating only in the event that GPS is not available to the system. GPS enables effective land navigation of the launcher in the absence of SCP information. In the absence of GPS information, the PNU provides free inertial navigation or navigation with the aid of existing odometer encoder inputs. • Boom controller. The boom controller permits remote control of the loading and off-loading functions and positioning of the LM for maintenance. An emergency disable switch has been added onto the M270A1 launcher boom controller because of the decreased reaction time associated with the increased speed of the LM. The boom controller on the M270 is not interchangeable with the boom controller on the M270A1 launcher.
Note: During boom controller operations, all crew members must follow all safety procedures outlined in the interactive electronic technical manual (IETM) 9-1055-646-13P.
• Power distribution box (PDB). The PDB provides operational interface to the boom/hoist assemblies, travel lock actuator, and cage down limit switch.
• GPS antenna. The GPS receiver interfaces with the GPS satellite constellation via the antenna mounted on top of the LM cage assembly.
1-33. The digitized cell requires an additional LRU called the tactical processing unit (TPU). The TPU is installed inside the cab of the launcher directly over the gunner’s right shoulder. In addition to the TPU, an improved Mass Storage Unit (MSU) is mounted inside the cab. The MSU uses a removable personal computer memory card international association (PCMCIA) card technology, further enhancing memory size and providing the MLRS crewmen a faster method of loading software. The digitized cell acts as an interface that will allow the MLRS crewmen access to the tactical internet (TI) and situational awareness (SA). SA is assisted by a display of symbols (icons) representing individual friendly and enemy units that appear on the map and move in near-real time as the platforms they represent move on the battlefield. This continually updated SA is a fully automatic function. SA will enhance crew survivability by keeping crewmen informed of the tactical situation.
1-34. The MSD-FR is an electronic device used to read the IETM and to program the MSU. To program the MSU, the MSD-FR must be set up as a PLU. It is connected to the FCP using a sport cable assembly. The MSD-FR mounts a compact disc (CD) containing operational program data. One MSD-FR and IETM is issued to each section and 1 PLU and software CD is issued to each platoon. The Embedded Program Load Unit (EPLU) differs from the MSD-FR PLU based version in that it is resident on a Personal Computer Memory Card International Association (PCMCIA) CCA. When the FCS is initialized the EPLU automatically starts and is accessed from the GDU via the EPLU card placed in the MSU allowing the operator to load software into the FCS.
1-35. The launcher IFCS provides the link between the crew, external digital message sources, and the launcher components. It performs the following significant functions:
• Monitors and integrates all onboard sensor data.
• In conjunction with the launcher communications system, provides a digital interface between the launcher crew and the command and control elements.
• Monitors the status of built-in tests.
• Enables the crew to control launcher components. • Computes firing data for all fire missions.
• Lays the LM and sets fuzes or programs warheads as required. • Controls LM operations.
1-36. The FCS receives data input in the following ways:
• Current mission data are input automatically through digital coded audio tone radio messages or manually through the FCP keyboard.
• IWIU munitions programs are input to the MSU from a CD through a MSD/FR set up as a PLU.
1-37. Data communication is the most common and preferred method of input to the FCS. Through the AN/VRC-92F and EPLRS radios and the Internet controller (INC), the FCS can communicate digitally with the platoon, battery, or battalion AFATDS. The INC is a component of the AN/VRC-92F radio. The FCS allows the crew to send and receive joint variable message format (JVMF), fixed-format, and free-text messages.
1-38. The primary means of communication is FM secure data; however, EPLRS data over the tactical Internet and FM voice secure communications are both available as backups. In case of data communication failure or when operating voice, the crew can manually enter all data elements through the GDU keyboard.
1-39. The IWIU automatically monitors, integrates, and computes data from other FCS launcher electronic components. It continuously computes launcher heading location and altitude. The FCS determines the firing data when the target information is received. When the crew enters the appropriate mission command, the FCS commands the LM to lay on the required launch azimuth and elevation, and set the rocket fuze times or program the warheads. The FCS fires the rockets or missiles when commanded by the gunner through the GDU.
1-40. The FCS continuously checks its internal components and those of the LM. These checks are made throughout the mission cycle. If a malfunction is detected, the crewmembers are notified by a fault message.
Note: The launcher is unable to fire the mission when a malfunction occurs in a launcher IFCS; that is, in the GDU, PSU, LIU, IWIU, or PNU. Because no backup means exist to fire the launcher manually, the fire mission must be redirected to an operational launcher for completion.
M142 HIGH MOBILITY ARTILLERY ROCKET SYSTEM
1-41. The M142 is an air transportable, wheeled, indirect fire, rocket/missile system that is capable of firing all rockets and missiles in the current and future MFOM. This system includes the launcher, ammunition trucks and trailers, MFOM and the C2 system.
1-42. The M142 system is deployable by C-130 or larger aircraft. The C-130 aircraft has the capability to land on short stretches of roadways and assault landing zones (ALZ) that are unusable by larger aircraft. For a combat loaded C-130 aircraft, the minimum size for an ALZ is 60 x 3000 feet and the desired size is 80 x 5000 feet.
1-43. The M142 launcher consists of the same FCS as the M270A1 that provides operator interface and technical fire control for the launch of rockets and missiles, a carrier vehicle (automotive portion) capable of supporting sustained, rapid maneuver, and a LM portion that performs all the functions necessary to load, aim and fire the launcher.
1-44. The M142 (Figure 1-2) LM holds 1 LPC/GMLA. The M142 firing and reload times are comparable to the M270A1 Launcher.
Figure 1-2. M142 HIMARS Launcher
1-45. The M142 launcher carrier is a variant of the fielded Army Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV) 4500mm (177 inches) wheelbase truck chassis. Major components of the vehicle are the 330 horsepower diesel engine, 7-speed automatic transmission, Central Tire Inflation System (CTIS), crew cab with operator vehicle controls, highway and tactical lighting system and signals, suspension, and flexible frame.
1-46. The FMTV cab/chassis of the M142 Launcher is designated the M1140; its unique features include: • A stage rear spring system that provides stability for fire missions and reload operations. This
2-stage system (Figure 1-3) is common to the tractor-trailer variant of the FMTV fleet.
• A variable displacement/pressure compensating hydraulic pump. The hydraulic pump mates with a speed-increasing gearbox, which steps up the engine speed to about 5,000 RPM. The gearbox mates to the Power Take Off (PTO) shaft coming out of the transmission; the shaft rotates at about 1,750 RPM. This hydraulic pump provides the source of hydraulic power to various sub-systems.
• Addition of doubler plates across the lower and upper frame rails to add stiffness for fire missions and reload operations. See Figure 1-3
• Replacement of the standard 100-Ampere alternator with a 300-Ampere alternator to provide the necessary power to the FCS and communications equipment.
Figure 1-3 M142 Chassis Frame Doubler
1-47. The FMTV crew cab is modified to provide protection from foreign objects and toxic gasses to the 3-man crew during firing. Features of the crew cab include:
• A commander’s hatch and “grab” bar on the roof of the cab (Figure 1-4).
• Replacement of all window glass with a transparent shatter resistant material, sufficient to protect against penetration by foreign objects during firing. Replacement of the 2 rear quarter panel window glasses and the rear window glass with metal.
• A chemical air filtration unit to filter toxic gasses from the outside air. The air filtration unit forces outside air through an M-48 Nuclear, Biological and Chemical filter causing an overpressure condition, which also prevents gasses from entering around the doors or other small openings.
• Alterations necessary for the FCS, communications equipment and controls, and indicators required to operate the M142 Launcher functions.
• Louvers over the windshield and panels in the side windows for protection from the flash and debris of rocket/missile firings.
1-48. An armored crew cab designated the Increased Crew Protection (ICP) cab under development and will replace the current cab.
Figure 1-4. Crew Cab
Figure 1-4. Crew Cab
1-49. The LM is mounted to the chassis of the vehicle and provides the necessary structure and mechanisms for loading, launching and unloading of all the MFOM. The LM consists of: a platform assembly for aiming the LM in elevation and on which 1 LPC/GMLA is mounted; a turret assembly for aiming the LM in azimuth; a base assembly that interfaces with the carrier vehicle; a hydraulic power control system, the Reload System (RS) and sponsons containing the FCS and other electronic components; and blast panels to protect the sponsons.
Window Glass Replaced Louvers
1-50. The platform assembly consists of the firing platform, 2 outboard sponsons, and reloading system. It provides the mechanical interface to the LPC/GMLA for the purpose of aiming and firing the weapons. The platform is capable of securing 1 LPC/GMLA, consisting of either 6 rockets or 1 missile. When aiming, the platform assembly can be driven in both azimuth and elevation simultaneously. Two operational speeds are provided; 1 for a tactical environment and 1 for maintenance. The maintenance speed is also used during BC reloading operations of the launcher. When operating with the BC, the platform is driven in only 1 axis at a time.
1-51. The firing platform (Figure 1-5) secures the ammunition pods to the launcher and provides the mechanical alignment of the pod to the PNU. The hold down mechanism is used to secure the ammunition pods to the firing platform and is basically the same design found on the M270A1 launchers. However, the material used to manufacture the front hold down hook has been changed to stainless steel to accommodate the firing characteristics of the M142.
1-52. Two manually operated jury struts are integrated into the firing platform for the purpose of securing the LM in place at an elevation of approximately 170 mils (10 degrees). The LM is secured with the jury struts as part of the non-standard procedure of loading LPC/GMLA from the RSV or RST.
1-53. Two elevation travel locks are mounted to the bottom front of the firing platform to secure the firing platform to the turret assembly during travel.
Figure 1-5. Firing Platform
1-54. The platform assembly consists of the firing platform, 2 outboard sponsons, and reloading system. It provides the mechanical interface to the LPC/GMLA for the purpose of aiming and firing the weapons. The platform is capable of securing 1 LPC/GMLA, consisting of either 6 rockets or 1 missile. When aiming, the platform assembly can be driven in both azimuth and elevation simultaneously. See figure 1-6. 1-55. The curbside sponson houses the BC, PNU, HIMARS Launcher Interface Unit (HLIU), PDB and the Hydraulic Reload Manifold. Access to these components is accomplished through compartment doors on the side and rear of the curbside sponson. In addition, the on-board GPS antenna is mounted on the top of the curbside sponson.
1-56. The roadside sponson houses the Improved Weapon Interface Unit (IWIU) and provides additional storage area for the crew. The IWIU is accessed through a compartment door on the rear of the roadside sponson.
1-57. Blast panels are fixed to the front surfaces of each sponson and provide protection from rocket blasts.
Figure 1-6 Sponsons
1-58. The turret assembly (Figure 1-7) houses the elevation drive components and interfaces the platform assembly to the azimuth drive components located in the base assembly. The turret mounts to the outer race of the azimuth geared bearing and rotates the firing platform under the direction of the FCS. Mounted to the turret assembly are components of the Hydraulic Control System (HCS) consisting of the elevation manifold and the elevation cylinder. The turret assembly also houses an elevation resolver to track elevation movement of the LM in relationship to the carrier vehicle.
1-59. The base assembly (Figure 1-8) provides the mechanical interface between the LM and the carrier vehicle. In addition, the base houses all the azimuth drive components for the system. These components consist of the azimuth-geared bearing, azimuth drive unit, and azimuth resolver.
Figure 1-8 Base Assembly
1-60. The RS for the launcher (Figure 1-9) is incorporated into the design of the platform assembly. It consists of a boom and hoist assembly similar to that on the M270A1 launcher. The RS is located over the top of the LPC/GMLA and does not impede C-130 aircraft loading/off loading. The M142 uses a hydraulic hoist motor for its RS.
SECTION III – MLRS FAMILY OF MUNITIONS (MFOM)
61. Each M270/M270A1 holds either 2 LPCs or 2 GMLAs (not a mix of the 2) in the LM (see figure 1-10). Each M142 holds 1 LPC or GMLA. Each launch pod contains either 6 rocket tubes or 1 missile housing in a containerized shipping, storage, and launch frame. Rockets and missiles are factory assembled and tested. Rockets are stored in fiberglass containers; missiles are stored in an aluminum enclosure with fiberglass camouflage panels on the exterior. Both rockets and missiles are then mounted on the frame. Both the rocket tubes and the missile housing are connected by cable to common electrical connectors. Not only are handling, transports, and loading fixtures similar, the LPC and GMLA are also visually similar. 1-62. The launch pod is 4.04 meters (13 feet, 2 inches) long (without skids) and 1.05 meters (3 feet, 5 inches) wide. The height of the pod is 0.84 meters (2 feet, 9 inches) with skids and 0.72 meters (2 feet, 4 inches) without skids. When loaded with rockets (tactical or practice), each LPC weighs 2,270 kilograms (5,095 pounds). The GMLRS Unitary Rocket LPC is 4.01 meters (m) (158 inches) long, 1.02 m (40.1 inches) wide, and weighs 2274.8 kilograms (5015.1 lbs).
1-63. A Loaded GMLA weighs 2,095 kilograms (5,111 pounds), and an inert training GMLA weighs 1,360 kilograms (2,998 pounds).
Do not mix the GMLA pod shoes for Block I with any other ATACMS missile Blocks IA and II M48/M57. The GMLA pod shoes for GPS guided missiles are 1 inch thicker than those for the Block I and for rockets. The added thickness of the pod shoes ensures that the improved missile guidance set (IMGS) for GPS guided missiles is not damaged during handling and shipment. The Block II pod shoes are also made of a more resilient (softer) material, which adds protection for the shock sensitive BAT submunitions. The operator must exercise care when transporting GMLAs with different pod shoe sizes to prevent unbalanced loads.
1-64. Four aluminum bulkheads provide rigidity to the frame and support for the rocket tube or missile housing. Tie-down and lifting D-rings are located on the top of the frame at the 4 corners. A lifting rod is installed and used by the launcher boom and hoist assemblies to lift the container.
1-65. Stacking pins at the top 4 corners of the frame permit stacking of the launch pods. The pods can be stacked 2 high during transport and 4 high during storage. They can be handled by forklift because they have 2 inner bulkheads that serve as support members. Each launch pod is marked for the center of gravity and proper lift areas.
1-66. The detachable skids mounted to the bottom 4 corners of the frame must be removed from the pod before it is loaded into the LM. A quick-release pull pin allows easy removal of the skids. The GMLA also has a lifting rod cover that must be removed before being loaded into the LM. Skids should be replaced prior to downloading and unfired pods to protect the connectors.
MISSILE/LAUNCH POD ASSEMBLY TRAINER
1-67. The training missile/launch pod assembly (M/LPA) facilitates MLRS crew training. The external appearances of both versions of the M/LPA (M68 and M68A2) resemble the tactical M26 LPC.
• M68 M/LPA trainer. (Compatible only with the M270 launcher.) This trainer provides the
crew with the capability to operate the M270 launcher’s FCS with the family of munitions in a training environment. It is used to train crewmembers in fire mission and reload operations. Using the trainer, the crew can select any of the tactical weapon types along with a variety of simulated weapon peculiar failure modes. The trainer also provides diagnostic capability to check the electrical interface between the trainer and the FCS.
• M68A2 M/LPA trainer. The M68A2 is updated to support Precision Munitions . The upgrade
consists of hardware and software modifications that allow the M68A2 to function with the M270A1 and M142 launchers. The M68A2 assists in providing realistic training to the MLRS crewmen. The training tasks include fire mission execution, reaction to munitions malfunctions, and reload operations. The M68A2 represents the entire MFOM, to include ATACMS Block II and unitary.
1-68. The MLRS unguided rockets are tube-launched, spin-stabilized, free flight projectiles. The rockets are assembled, checked, and packaged in a dual-purpose, launch-storage tube at the factory. This design provides for tactical loading and firing of the rocket without troop assembly or detailed inspection. Major components of the rocket assembly include 4 stabilizer fins, a propulsion section, and a warhead section (see figure 1-11).
1-69. Propulsion for the rocket is provided by a solid propellant rocket motor. An umbilical cable, passing through the aft end of the launch tube, links the FCS to an igniter in the rocket nozzle. The motor is ignited by an electrical command from the FCS.
1-70. Each rocket is packaged with the 4 fins folded and secured by wire rope retaining straps. As the rocket moves forward upon firing, lanyard devices trigger a delayed strap-cutting charge. After the rocket leaves the launch tube, the charge cuts the straps. This allows the fins to unfold and lock. The M28A1 training rockets have an additional fin release device to ensure deployment.
1-71. The MLRS rocket follows a ballistic, free flight (unguided) trajectory to the target. The propulsion provided by the solid propellant rocket motor is the same for each rocket, so rocket range is a function of LM elevation. The 4 stabilizer fins at the aft end of the rocket provide in-flight stability by maintaining a constant counterclockwise spin. The initial spin is imparted to the rocket through spin rails mounted on the inner wall of the launch tube.
1-72. This is the basic rocket for MLRS. It is used against personnel, soft and lightly armored targets normally with a target location error (TLE) of 150 meters or less. Larger TLEs may reduce effectiveness. Each rocket dispenses 644 M77 dual-purpose improved conventional munitions (DPICM) sub munitions over the target area.
M26 Warhead Function
1-73. Warhead event is initiated by an electronic time fuze (M445) that is set remotely by the FCS immediately before ignition of the rocket motor. The fuze triggers a center burster charge. This causes the warhead to rupture, the polyurethane filler to shatter, and the sub munitions to be spread over the target area.
M77 Submunition Description
1-74. The armed M77 sub munitions detonate on impact (see figure 1-12). The antimateriel capability is provided through a shaped charge with a built-in standoff. The M77 can penetrate up to 4 inches of armor. Its steel case fragments and produces antipersonnel effects within a radius of 4 meters.
1-75. The sub munitions’ dud rate increases significantly at ranges less than 10 kilometers.
Figure 1-12. M77 Submunition
1-76. The extended range rocket (ER-MLRS) M26A2 is an evolution of the basic M26 rocket that extends the range to 45-plus kilometers. (MET data no older than 30 minutes is required to achieve maximum accuracy at 45 kilometers.) This greater range capability is achieved through a 20-percent reduction in the number of sub munitions and a modified rocket motor. It has the same accuracy as the basic M26 rocket. . The effectiveness of the M26 rocket is maintained in the ER rocket even though the sub munitions payload has been decreased. This is due to the improved center core burster.
1-77. The M28A1 and M28A2 rockets (reduced range) are also available for live firing at Army training installations. These practice rockets have a monolithic (relatively uniform and predictable) trajectory and a reduced range (8 to 15 kilometers). The M28A1 and M28A2 are restricted to firing in surface winds of less than 30 knots. This results in a much smaller surface danger zone than the M26, thus allowing it to be fired on many cannon artillery firing ranges. The M28A1 has a blunt nosed, high-drag warhead section that contains an impact activated smoke charge. The M28A2 does not have an impact activated smoke charge. These training rockets have the same motor assembly as the M26 and automatically balance the LPC during firing similar to the M26. This automatic balancing function can be overridden using the rocket selection option in the FCS.
M30/M31 Guided MLRS Rocket
1-78. The M30/M31 GMLRS rocket provides the U.S. Army with a long range, all weather, day and night, rocket artillery system capable of defeating a variety of targets. Target types for the M30/M31 are the same as for those of the M26 and M26A2 rockets. These targets include but are not limited to artillery, multiple rocket launchers (MRLs), air and missile defense (AMD), and lightly armored maneuver units. The M30/M31 can engage targets at a range of 15 - 70 kilometers (km). The M30/M31 rocket gives the MFOM improved capability in the areas of system accuracy, range, and payload types. The much greater accuracy of the M30/M31s allows for rockets to be fired on targets that in the past would not be possible. Engaging targets nearer friendly troops, built up areas, and civilian population is now a consideration.
1-79. The M30/M31 guided rockets are packaged in and fired from an LPC with the same height, width, and length characteristics as the MLRS LPC. The guided unitary rocket is equipped with a GMLRS motor, a guidance package, and carries a warhead/payload that may attack a variety of targets to include those that require low collateral damage. Design of the rocket allows handling and maintenance within the current system. The guided unitary rocket is fired from both the M270A1 and the M142 launcher.
M30/M31 GMLRS ROCKET COMPONENTS
1-80. The propulsion section of the M30/M31 is similar to that of the M26A2 but does incorporate some unique characteristics. The rocket motor has the same physical dimensions of the M26A2 rocket motor, but incorporates a spinning tailfin section (the tailfins on the M26 and M26A2 rockets are stationary). The purpose of the spinning tailfin section is to reduce the effect that the wash from the canards have on the rocket’s flight. The solid fuel used in the rocket motor of the M30/M31 is the same fuel used in the ATACMS. This is a slower burning fuel than that used in the M26 and M26A2 rockets, which provides the M30/M31 its extended range.
Embedded GPS Receiver
1-81. The embedded GPS Receiver (EGR) provides the M30/M31 rockets with very accurate navigational updates by the use of orbiting satellites. These updates (made in flight) improve the rocket in–flight and terminal accuracy, regardless of range to target. The EGR determines precise position, velocity, time of day, and range information. Although it has greater accuracy while in the GPS aided mode, the M30 is not GPS dependent and will achieve a high level of accuracy in the non-aided mode.
Warhead / Guidance Section
1-82. The M30 warhead section contains 404 PI-M77 DPICM grenades, a center core burster (CCB), and a polyurethane support.
1-83. The M30/M31 uses an internal guidance and control assembly (GCA) that makes in-flight adjustments, guiding the rocket to the target. The GCA consists of the internal measurement unit (IMU), guidance and control (G&C) computer, GPS antenna and receiver, control actuation system, canards, electrical safe/arm device (ESAD), umbilical cable, and battery. The GCA section occupies the forward
portion of the rocket and provides the commands to navigate the rocket to its aim point. The IMU and GPS are tactical grade, non-developmental items (NDI). Adjustments in the flight pattern are made by the use of 4 small non-folding canards located in the ogive portion of the nose cone. The canards are controlled by electromechanical actuators in response to navigation and control commands from the GCA. The GCA also provides the electrical commands to activate the payload ESAD, initiating the CCB, and dispensing the sub munitions over the target for the M30 or the warhead fuze for the M31. The GCA components are powered by an on-board thermal battery that is activated just prior to launch. Figure 1-13 shows the components of the M30; figure 1-14 shows the components of the M31.
1-84. The M31 warhead payload is an explosive filled steel canister designed to burst into fragments of a controlled size. The canister weighs approximately 196 pounds and contains 51.5 pounds of PBXN 109 insensitive explosive and a tri-mode fuze.
1-85. The warhead is capable of 3 fuze modes; proximity, point detonating and delay.
1-86. The proximity fuze mode causes warhead detonation at approximately 7 meters above the target, the point detonating mode causes detonation upon impact, and the delay mode causes detonation as the nose cone penetrates about 1 meter into the ground, this places the explosive filled canister partially below the surface of the ground.
Figure 1-14. M31 GMLRS Rocket
1-87. The ATACMS missiles are designed to carry a variety of sub munitions, including “smart” munitions and lethal mechanisms to provide a wide range of future capabilities. Currently, the Army has the M39 ATACMS Block I, M39A1 Block IA, M39A3 Block II, and M48/M57 missiles.
Notes: When firing the ATACMS and the FIRE switch is toggled, battery squibs are activated within milliseconds. When the SAFE/ARM switch is safe, the firing sequence will be halted. As the squibs have been activated, the FCP will display a misfire. The missile cannot be used for another fire mission. Treat the missile as if it malfunctioned by downloading it and notifying the ammunition transfer point (ATP) personnel for disposition instructions. The missile can be repaired by depot level maintenance.
If the tactical situation is such that the loss of an ATACMS missile to the enemy is imminent and evacuation is not feasible or possible, destroy the missile by using demolition charges in accordance with TM 9-1425-648-13&P. If the ATACMS missile becomes unserviceable due to external damage or weapon failures, contact the ATP for disposition. MLRS ammunition is not to be left unattended on the battlefield.
1-88. All ATACMS missiles have 4 sections: the guidance and control section, propulsion section, control section, and the warhead assembly (see figure 1-15).
1-89. The solid rocket motor furnishes the energy necessary to launch the missile and sustain missile flight for a sufficient time to meet altitude and range requirements. The solid propellant motor consists of a motor case, propellant, insulation/liner, nozzle, and igniter arm/fire assembly.
1-90. The primary functions of the control section assembly are to position the missile fins, provide the missile electrical power while in flight, and support selected pyrotechnic functions. The fins are folded when the missile is installed in the GMLA. Electro-mechanical actuators automatically unfold and lock the spring-loaded fins in flight position when the missile leaves the GMLA to control the missile during flight.
1-91. The Block I warhead is used against personnel and soft stationary targets normally with a TLE of 150 meters or less. Larger TLEs may reduce effectiveness. Each missile dispenses a cargo of approximately 950 antipersonnel/antimateriel (APAM) M74 grenades. The missile has 3 programmable dispense patterns (small, medium, and large) and has off-axis launch capability to enhance crew/launcher survivability from enemy counter fire. The M39 Block I missile (ATACMS Block I) has a minimum range of 25 kilometers and a maximum range of 165 kilometers.
Note: When firing Block I, the operator will experience a 13-second delay after initiating the fire command before the missile engine ignites.
M39 Warhead Function
1-92. Warhead event is initiated by an electronic time fuze (M219A2) that is set in the same manner as the M445 electronic time fuze of the M26 rocket. The fuze detonates shaped charges mounted to the skin and bulkheads. This, in turn, severs the skin. The M74 grenades are distributed over the target area by centrifugal force and air stream currents. Arming of the M74 grenades is accomplished by the spin action induced on the individual grenade.
Guidance and Control Section
1-93. The Block I Guidance and Control Section (GCS) provide all navigation, guidance, autopilot, and internal communications functions for the missile while in flight and for all ground operations. The missile's inertial sensors, electronics, and software provide continuous determination of missile position, attitude, and motion.
Figure 1-15. M39/M39A1 Missile
1-94. The M74 grenade is filled with composition B explosive filler and is covered by a steel shell (see figure 1-16). Upon impact and detonation, each grenade breaks up into a large number of high-velocity steel fragments that are effective against targets such as personnel, truck tires, missile rounds, thin-skinned vehicles, and radar antennas. This submunition is not effective against armored vehicles. The M74 grenade also contains incendiary material and has an antipersonnel radius of 15 meters.