Indian Army tests K9 Vajra self propelled howitzer
Six rounds were fired successfully from the K9 “Vajra” self-propelled howitzer on 26 and 27 September, again six rounds were fired after the 13 modifications were done in the gun. Trials had been done in the same Pokhran Field Firing Range two weeks earlier, on 13 September.
K9-Vajra self-propelled howitzer displayed at DefExpo India 2018 (Picture source )
The gun has been developed by Larsen and Toubro (L&T). The artillery gun has an advanced system for detection of chemical & nuclear weapons, which has GPS and navigation system and automatic MO loading system. The K9 Vajra weighs about 45 tonnes and can reach a top speed of 60-70 km/hour. The Howitzer is particularly adapted to desert areas bordering Pakistan. The artillery of the Indian army will soon get a total of 100 indigenous K9-Vajra-T 155mm/52 calibre. There is a special system known as MRSI (Multiple Round Simultaneous Impact) which fires three rounds in 15 seconds.
The Vajra was ordered by the Indian army in April 2017, after a global competition was won by Larsen and Toubro. The guns are being made in India, in cooperation with Hanwha Techwin of South Korea, with an initial order of 100 units, which is valued at Rs 4500 crore. The gun will be deployed along the western border to give an edge over the Pakistani battlefield in mobile artillery.