Russian troops are set to receive over 30 new Tornado multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) in 2020.
"The delivery of more than thirty modern multiple launch rocket systems to units of rocket troops and artillery of the Russian Federation Armed Forces is planned by the end of this year. Tornado-G and Tornado-S MLRS will be handed over by manufacturing companies to the Russian Defense Ministry within the framework of performing the state defense order," the defense ministry said in a statement Sunday.
The Tornado is Russia's answer to the US Army’s High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS). Manufacturer Lockheed Martin completed final test of its new Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) by firing it from HIMARS launcher last week.
The Tornado system is equipped with GLONASS satellite guidance (Russian GPS) to enable the launch vehicle to pinpoint its own location for more accurate fire. They are designed to replace the Cold War era’s Smerch and Uragan MRLS.
Tornado-G, derived from BM-21 Grad MLRS, has a rotating launcher mounted on a Kamaz 6x6 or Ural-4320 military trucks. It can fire forty 122mm rockets with a range of about 25 miles. It can fire cluster warheads with self-guided anti-tank sub-munitions. “Tornado-G is designed to launch strikes against manpower at the open areas and shelters, armored vehicles, artillery units and command posts. Modern communications systems and a digital control system allow Tornado-G to use Orlan unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for reconnaissance, guidance and correction of fire,” according to the Russian defense ministry.
The Tornado-S is an upgraded version of BM-30 Smerch and fires heavier 300mm rockets. It reportedly has a range of 75 miles and able to blast an area of 2.6 miles. The system can fire its rockets in a salvo or as individual precision missiles. It can also use adjustable ammunition.
he unique long-range 300 mm Tornado-S MLRS allows firing at a range of up to 120 km and covering an area exceeding 60 ha. The complex is capable of firing both with single rockets and a full salvo of 12 guides.
A key feature of the Tornado-S MLRS is a new automated guidance and fire control system that allows you to simultaneously control the division’s fire, as well as automatically calculate target data, direct packages of guiding combat vehicles in horizontal and vertical planes.
The system received export clearance from the Russian MoD in 2019.