PLZ-07 122mm self-propelled howitzer
The PLZ-07 is a 122 mm Chinese self-propelled artillery gun. It is developed in the 2000s by NORINCO. It is China's third-generation 122-mm howitzer, which has received widespread attention as one of the latest weapon samples to take part in the 60th anniversary parade of the 2009 National Day. The PLZ-07 was first introduced at the Military Parade on October 1, 2009, on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the PLA, the People's Liberation Army. The PLZ-07 uses the chassis of the Infantry Armored Fighting Vehicle ZBD-04 (ZBD-97). The 600 hp engine is located on the right front and the cockpit on the front left of the chassis. Access to the vehicle is done through the door at the rear of the chassis and the two hatches on the roof of the turret. The PLZ-07 is equipped with amphibious capacity, propelled into the water with the movement of the tracks. The PLZ-07 is armed with a 122 mm gun derived from the Soviet D-30 gun. The maximum firing distance is 18 km with a standard shell and 27 km with the ammunition powered.
PLZ-07 is the third generation of domestic 122 mm self-propelled howitzer, the previous two generations of products are 70/70-1 (using 63-type armored transport vehicle chassis) and 85 (export type), 89 type (domestic type). The PLZ-07 self-propelled howitzer was developed on the basis of China's second-generation infantry fighting vehicles. The vehicle is 6.66 meters long, 3.28 meters wide and 2.5 metres high, equipped with a 122mm PL-96 howitzer and a 12.7mm machine gun on top of the turret.
The howitzer combat weight is 24.5 tons and is much heavier than the base infantry fighting vehicle, so it does not have a float function. Amphibious performance was abandoned because of large changes in the shape of its head and a duller head, removing wave-proof and jet-flow thrusters.
The gun fires 122 mm type ammunition, which can be fired in the range of 0 to 70 degrees high and low, and 22.5 degrees in each direction. The maximum range of the launch of the bottom concave shell is 18 kilometers, the maximum range of the launch bottom exhaust is 22 kilometers, and the maximum range of the launch of the bottom row rocket booster is 27 kilometers. The ground dispersion range of the launch bottom concave shell at the maximum range is not greater than 1/300. The maximum fire speed of the gun is 6 to 8 shots per minute. Correspondingly, the PLZ-07 belongs to the brigade-level self-propelled artillery system, which can fire one minute after stopping the march and resume the march in 3 minutes.
PLZ07-style 122mm self-cannon howitzer is an improvement on the basis of 89-type self-propelled howitzer. The Type 97 chassis is used to increase the interior space of the turret and is equipped with a new type of 122 howitzer. It equips artillery battalions, and is used in regiment-level unit fire suppression.
The 122 mm self-propelled howitzer fire control sub-system mainly works in an automatic way. It is based on fire control computer as the core, the implementation of the system-wide automatic control. The fire control sub-system automatically receives the shooting dollars, shooting commands and various parameters issued by the superior command system, automatically performs the calculation and tilt correction, and automatically adjusts the gun to the firing position. Equipped with wired, wireless two ways of co-existing communication devices, with number, telephone two ways of working, and can be used with the shooting command system: equipped with digital in-car telephone.
The new 122 mm self-propelled howitzer has advanced internal and external ballistics at long range. The overall layout of the weapon system is reasonable, equipped with fire control system, which improves the operational performance of self-propelled guns, reduces the combat intensity of combatants and relies on tactical technical support, and improves the rapid response capability.
The PLZ-07 self-propelled howitzer was developed on the basis of China's second-generation infantry fighting vehicles, where the "second-generation infantry fighting vehicles" refer to ZBD-04 infantry fighting vehicles based on the Russian-made BMD-3 "Guaryuan" paratrooper strategy, and China's first-generation infantry fighting vehicles are clones of Soviet-made BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicles.
The PLZ-07 self-propelled howitzer crew consists of 5 people: 1 gun captain, 1 aimer, 2 fillers, 1 mechanic and driver. The driver is located in the front left of the chariot cab, which is equipped with a variety of control devices, instruments and driver computers, the remaining 4 people in the turret command room, the gunner in the front and right position of the gun, aimed at the front left position of the hand, 2 fillers sit. There is a computer in the command room that handles navigational and engine work information. The front of the cab is equipped with 3 perroscope observers, the middle of which can be replaced with night vision as needed. There is an automatic fire suppression system in the vehicle.
The PLZ-07 122 mm self-propelled howitzer uses the light track-type chassis and closed turret of the second-generation infantry fighting vehicle, and the overall arrangement is basically the same as that of other self-propelled artillery structures, that is, the power transmission front and the combat room rear. The front right is the power drive, which is equipped with the engine, transmission, transmission and control. The rear of the chariot is a combat room, equipped with a home-made PL-96 howitzer, as well as gun control devices, fire control systems, observation devices, radio stations, shooting command computers and so on. The gun is also equipped with overpressurized collective three defense equipment, fire suppression system, six-in-a-box electric control smoke screen projectile launcher and other special protective devices. The PLZ-07 self-propelled howitzer uses a 544-horsepower water-cooled diesel engine with a maximum travel speed of 65 km/h and a travel of 500 km. Due to the widespread use of superior technology proven on 155 mm PLZ-05 self-propelled howitzers, stability at self-propelled artillery fire is ensured.
China has shown representatives of a country once known as Big Brother the level of information and the speed of its response to PZ-07 artillery, and at one point shocked them because they did not have any weapons of their kind comparable. The "big brother" country naturally refers to Russia, which leads to the conclusion that Chinese artillery is more advanced than Russian artillery.
Two of the latest Chinese artillery weapons made their exercise debuts in plateau regions organized by the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Xinjiang Military Command and Tibet Military Command, with analysts saying on 28 July 2021 that these weapons are particularly effective on plateaus. An artillery unit under a regiment affiliated with the PLA Xinjiang Military Command organized a live-fire exercise with newly commissioned equipment for the first time in a snowy plateau region at an elevation of more than 5,000 meters. The new rocket artillery looks similar to the PHL-11 self-propelled multiple rocket launcher system.
The new tube-artillery equipment is likely the PLZ-07 122-millimeter-caliber self-propelled howitzer, Shanghai-based news website eastday.com said in an analysis. With an armored, caterpillar-tracked chassis, the PLZ-07 has much higher survivability and mobility when operating in special terrains, making it potentially China's most powerful howitzer in its caliber category, eastday.com said.
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