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Raad-2 / Thunder 2

In early September 1997 it was reported that Iran had successfully tested a locally built rapid fire mobile field gun known as the Raad 2 (Thunder 2), a complement to the Raad 1. The Defense Industries Organization claimed that the 155 mm self-propelled gun had a high firing rate, accuracy and mobility. It was described as being able to fire five rounds per minute and move with a speed of 70 km (43 miles) per hour in the battlefield. The gun's range was reported as 30 km (19 miles). According the manufacturer the Raad 2 design also included an automatic laying system, direct fire telescope, night vision equipment, NBC protection system, automatic and manual fire extinguishing equipment, radio and digital communication gear, GPS and a multi-fuel engine.

As with the Raad 1, the Raad 2 makes use of indigenous produced versions of equipment and technology already in Iranian inventory. In this case a turret identical in apperance to that of the US M109A1 self-propelled howitzer, and fitted with a locally manufactured derivative of the M185 155mm howitzer, designed HM44 by the manufacturer, were combined with the Boragh APC chassis (as with the Raad 1). This chassis is based on the Chinese WZ-501/503 series, itself a copy of the Russian BMP-1 series.

The Raad 2 was in service with Iranian forces as of 2008, and was in series production by the Vehicle Industries Group of the state run Defense Industries Organization (also referred to as the Armour Industries Group).




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