Sarpac

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Sarpac
Type one-man anti-tank weapon
Place of origin France
Service history
Used by Finland, Malaysia Royal Malaysian Police.
Specifications
Weight 1.09 kg (HEAT round)
1.9 kg (empty launcher)
Length 734 mm (closed for transportation)
997 mm (extended for firing)
Crew 1

Caliber 68 mm
Action Semi disposable (improved launcher can be reloaded 20 times)
Rate of fire N/A
Muzzle velocity 150 m/s antitank round
Effective firing range 150-200 m antitank round
Maximum firing range 700-800 m general purpose and illumination round
Feed system N/A
Brandt SARPAC
SARPAC top, M72 LAW middle, MINIMAN bottom

Sarpac (French: Super Arme de Proximité Anti-Char) is a French manufactured recoilless individual 68 mm anti-tank/assault rocket weapon.

The Sarpac was developed by the company Hotchkiss-Brandt, and it was primarily designed as an anti-tank weapon, but it is also useful against fortified positions constructed of concrete. The Sarpac comprises a launcher that can fire 68mm anti-tank, dual-purpose anti-armour/personnel or illuminating rocket projectiles. Sarpac is one of the few light antitank rocket launchers offered in the 1960s and 1970s that offered both a high penetration anti-tank round and a general purpose round, which has a smaller HEAT warhead than the anti-tank round, and in addition has two metal fragmentation collars located around the body of the warhead, and while its penetration is not effective against heavily armoured MBTs it does have sufficient penetration to be effective in the light anti-armour, anti-vehicle and anti-personnel and is considered superior for almost all combat firing missions other than antitank and concrete bunkers. And due to the size and weight of general purpose round there is almost double the effective range of the anti-tank round.[1] The launcher consists of two telescoping tube sections with the inner one extending forward, a trigger mechanism, a sighting unit, a folding shoulder support and a strap for carrying. The sighting mechanism while considered unusual is robust and has the shape of a parallelogram when in firing position. On the front of the sight there is both a ranging scale and a grid which enables the operator to fire at moving targets. The projectile is fin stabilized with eight forward folding fins which lock into position after leaving the tube. The rocket motor burns completely before leaving the tube, so as not to injure the gunner. The Sarpac launcher weighs approximately 1.9 kg empty and was originally meant to be disposable, however tests showed that the improved launcher introduced later could be reloaded for up to 20 firings. And although developed and manufactured in France, the Sarpac was never adopted by the French Army, however it has been exported to a number of countries.[2] The unit cost of the projectile and launcher is reported to be extremely low.[3]

The Sarpac is no longer in production, is considered obsolete and is no longer in service with Finland or Malaysia.

Ammunition[edit]

  • ROCHAP HEAP - dual purpose round with both an anti-personnel and light anti-armour warhead round, effective range 700 meters, weight 1.8 kg
  • ROCHAR HEAT - HEAT round, effective range 200 meters, weight 1.09 kg
  • ROCLAIR ILLUM - illumination round, 765 meters, weight 1.3 kg, burn time 30 seconds [4]

Note: Empty Launcher Weighs 1.9 kg

References and notes[edit]

  1. ^ most likely the reason that the Malaysia government bought the Sarpac for their para-military forces as they had no requirement for an antitank weapon
  2. ^ only two have been named, although it is reported to be sold to other nations in Africa and the Middle East
  3. ^ Jane's Infantry Weapons 1976 page 574-575
  4. ^ this is the range fired at a slant range into the air