Thunderbolt-2000

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Thunderbolt-2000
Thunderbolt 2000 MLRS Side View 20111105a.jpg
Thunderbolt-2000 Mk-45
Type Rocket artillery
Place of origin  Republic of China (Taiwan)
Production history
Designer Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology[1]
Manufacturer Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology[1]
Produced 1997 - Present
Specifications
Shell High explosive, Anti-personnel and Anti-Materiel dual-function cluster warhead or steel-ball shrapnel high-explosive warhead submunitions[2]
Caliber 117 mm(MK15),[2] 180mm(MK30), 227mm(MK45)
Effective firing range 15 km (MK15), 30 km (MK30), 45 km (MK45)

The Thunderbolt-2000 RT/LT-2000 is a wheeled MLRS systems used by the Republic of China Army. It was created with the intention of attacking enemy forces when disembarking from sea.[3]

The prototype Thunderbolt-2000's weapon systems is placed on the chassis of a M977 Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck.[2] Production model will MAN HX81 8x8 wheeled trucks, first batch ordered with 57 launchers and 54 ammo carriers/reloaders or local production of the same version. Expect to enter service with all 3 main Army Groups in Taiwan from 2010/11. Each Army Group's Artillery Group will receive 1 battalion of RT/LT-2000, which will consist of 3 companies/batteries, with each battery/company will have 6 RT/LT-2000 launchers. The original CSIST LT-2000 prototype battery is in service with Kinman Command, deployed there since mid-2000.

History[edit]

It had made its debut in 1997 when it appeared for the first time to the public during a Han Kuang exercise.[3] The platform is going to be MAN HX81 8x8 wheeled trucks, with 57 launchers and 54 ammo carriers/reloaders.[4]

Munitions[edit]

Thunderbolt-2000 at the R.O.C. Army Hukou Camp

The LT/RT-2000 uses three types of munitions: Mk15 (60 rounds, 3 pods of 20 round each, 15 km range), Mk30 (27 rounds, 3 pods of 9 rounds each, 30 km range) and Mk45 (12 rounds, 2 pods of 6 rounds each, 45 km range). While the Mk15 is the 117 mm rockets used by the Kung Feng VI that carrys 6,400 6.4mm size steel balls, the Mk30 rocket is a bit larger than the Mk15 at 180mm caliber and can carry either 267 rounds of M77 Dual Purpose Improved Conventional Munitions (DPICM) bomblets or 18,300 8mm size steel balls with range of 30 km. And Mk45 larger than the Mk30 at 227mm caliber as it can carry either 518 rounds of M77 bomblets or 25,000 8mm steel balls with range of 45 km.[3] Other types of munitions also being developed by CSIST/ROC Army, including FAE bomblets.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Archived August 5, 2001 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b c LT-2000. Retrieved on May 11, 2008.
  3. ^ a b c Lei Ting-2000. Retrieved on May 11, 2008.
  4. ^ [1]