Saturday, August 21, 2010

Update on the SH-3 Artillery System.

It appears the truck-based self-propelled artillery system has provided to be successful and now enjoys a rapid adoption rate within both the Beijing and Chengdu MRs.

My previous entry on SH-3 Truck Based self-propelled system.
Monday, November 16, 2009

SP-1 and SP-3 Truck Based Self-Propelled Artillery System.
The Norinco SP family of Truck Based self-propelled (SP) artillery system was first revealed during the 2007 Abu Dhabi International Defence Exhibition (IDEX 2007). It is once again on display at this year’s IDEX with more detailed sales brochures and technical diagrams. China’s debut of the L-15 advanced jet trainer marks a major push into the Middle East Arms market after the success of the PLZ-45 155mm SP artillery deals with Kuwait.

The SP project commenced in 2002 with two variants: 155mm/52 caliber SP1 and the 122mm (D-30) based SP3. The truck based artillery concept is gaining popularity in recently years as they are an inexpensive option to air transport and can utilize the highway routes that are becoming more available. It will face stiff competition as the Truck Based Self-Propelled Artillery market is already dominated by more established players such as BAE’s Lightweight Mobile Artillery System, the French (CAEASR) Nexter Systems and the ATMOS 2025 Autonomous Self Propelled 155mm Gun. The advantage of the SP family is that it can fire both the Russian or the NATO based laser-guided projectile as well as the standard HE rounds.

It has been confirmed that a small quantity of SPs are already in PLA service since October 2009.

SH-3 of the 38th Group Army in a recent "Red-Vs-Blue" military drill at Beijing MR's 朱日和 Combined Arms Tactical Training Base in Inner Mongolia.

SH-3 of Chengdu MR.


duskylim said...

The 122 mm truck-mounted self-propelled howitzer is rather unimpressive.

It appears to be little more than a slightly upgraded Chinese D-30, mounted on the back of a heavy-duty truck.

From the size of the gun crew, there doesn't appear to be any attempt to mechanize its operation - there are so many of them on the bed of the truck, furiously operating the gun.

The only concession to modernization is the provision of numerous battery-support vehicles like battery-radar, command and control and meteorological.

Even just an automatic loader would serve to vastly reduce crew numbers.

Coatepeque said...


Another way to look at it -- the weak points you cited are the very reason the PLA is adopting it at a rapid rate.

Proven components, both the chassis and the gun (type 96/D30 copy) are in service with the PLA for many years and very reliable.

Easy to produce -- ram up production is very easy, there is no need to create an entire new production line.

ROI -- The return on very little investment (while not world class) is great. The towed arty now has mobility and can be placed under a centralized fire control system.