Almost 27 years after the controversy over the purchase of howitzers from the Swedish AB Bofors The Government of India has approved the purchase from BAE Systems 145 howitzer M77 caliber 155/39 for a total of $ 650 million. The decision to purchase American howitzers was taken at a meeting of the Committee of military supplies, headed by Defence Minister AK Anthony. Projects approved by the committee, will be submitted to the Ministry of money for the final approval of the Cabinet.
It is expected that these light weapons will be deployed in the states of Arunachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, having a common border with China. Extensively vserasprostraneno the view that placing M777 near the border with China, is a direct response to the deployment of Chinese weapons in the region in the last 3 years.
Most of this gun firing range conventional missiles is 24.7 km and 30 km projectiles with rocket boosters. M777A2 howitzer can fire high-precision missiles Raytheon / Bofors XM982 Excalibur with GPS / inertial guidance (GPS / INS) extended range with the introduction of modular propellant charge (MACS). Excalibur has a maximum range of 40 km and an accuracy of 10 meters. Howitzers M777 provide firepower and modern 155-millimeter towed artillery systems, but for all that weigh half as much. Howitzer armed with a longish barrel in 39 gauge. The muzzle velocity of the projectile is 827 m / s. Digital system Fire Control (Towed Artillery Digitization, TAD) contains the onboard ballistic computer, navigation system, guidance system and determine the position of the most howitzers. All this provides a higher accuracy and faster response time. TAD set also includes a mechanical flow projectiles, laser igniter mounted in the breech, replacing ordinary chemical capsules also include electronic drives for lifting and rotation of the trunk.
With a total weight of 3745 kg M777 can be transported by helicopters, transport planes or ships. Overland howitzer can be towed by standard 4×4 vehicles with air brakes and a carrying capacity of 2.5 tons. The gun is mounted on the suspension with hydraulic struts supplied by Horstman Defence Systems from England. This allows you to move on the road with the greatest speed of 88 km per hour or a speed of 50 km per hour over rough terrain. When transporting the load on the towing eye is only 60 kg. Tow ground clearance is 660 mm.