The U.S. Army marked the delivery of the 400th High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS)
December 5, 2011
DALLAS, Sept. 21, 2011 -- The U.S. Army marked the delivery of the 400th High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) during ceremonies at the Lockheed Martin Camden, Ark., manufacturing facility. The event celebrated the successful partnership and fielding of the Army's newest Artillery Rocket weapon system.
To date, the U.S. Army has received 300 HIMARS and just recently completed a Total Package Fielding event with the 3rd Battalion, 157th Field Artillery Regiment from the Colorado National Guard. The Battalion Commander, LTC Scott Sherman, was excited about the new weapon system. "Our unit just returned from Iraq in April 2010 after completing a security mission and we are extremely excited about receiving the new equipment and getting back to being full time Artillery officers," said LTC Sherman. "Once the Soldiers started learning about the system and gained a better understanding of its full potential on the battlefield, excitement grew each and every day of the fielding and culminated with the firing of 32 rockets during the live fire event."
HIMARS is not just an U.S. Army system. It is also fielded by the U.S. Marine Corps and numerous international partners who have already taken delivery of 100 weapon systems. The Marines are currently requesting more launchers while the Foreign Military Sales division continues to receive increased interest from our Allies.
"It is absolutely essential that we provide our Soldiers, Marines and Special Operations forces with the most responsive, accurate and lethal long-range fires available. We simply owe our troops nothing short of the best," said Lt. Col. Frederick Hughes, HIMARS Product Manager for the U.S Army. "The M142 HIMARS launcher is the system of choice for delivering precision long-range fires for our troops in combat. It is reassuring to know that the King of Battle -- the Field Artillery -- has 300 HIMARS launchers ready to support our brave men and women defending liberty around the world."
In service since 2005, HIMARS brings Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) firepower to a wheeled chassis. It carries a single six-pack of rockets or one ATACMS missile, and can launch the entire MLRS family of munitions. It is C-130-transportable and can be deployed into areas previously inaccessible to heavier launchers. The chassis, provided by BAE and supported by PM Mobile Tactical Vehicles, incorporates innovative weight saving characteristics while simultaneously providing the crew with armor protection. HIMARS also incorporates the self-loading, autonomous features that have made MLRS the premier rocket artillery system in the world.
Although the newest weapon system in the U.S. Army, HIMARS has proven its abilities on the battlefield. It has been deployed in support of both Operation Iraq Freedom and Operation Enduring freedom and it is currently deployed in support of both Army and Marine Corp units today.
HIMARS continues to provide the Warfighter with cutting edge technology today and in the future.
By MAJ Mark Bird, APM HIMARS