|Manufacturer:||Singapore Technologies Kinetics Ltd - STK|
|Product type:||Armoured Vehicles|
Early in 2001, Singapore Technologies Kinetics, which includes the former Singapore Technologies Automotives, Ordnance Development and Engineering (ODE) and Chartered Industries of Singapore (CIS), announced that it was developing a new 155 mm/39 calibre Light Weight Self-Propelled Howitzer (LWSPH) (4×4).
This system has been developed as a private venture by Singapore Technologies Kinetics for the export market with the first firing trials of the ordnance taking place in South Africa.
The first demonstration prototype of the 155 mm/39 calibre LWSPH was shown in Singapore early in 2002 and then at Eurosatory 2002 in Paris in June.
The 155 mm/39 calibre LWSPH is being developed for use by rapid deployment forces with key design factors stated by Singapore Technologies Kinetics to include:
- Excellent firepower
- Superior strategic and tactical air or land mobility
- Good survivability
- Minimal logistics support
As the targeted weight of the complete LWSPH system is only about 7,000 kg, the system can be transported inside of a Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules transport aircraft and can be carried slung under a CH-47 or CH-53 helicopter.
As of late 2005 no production orders for the system are known to have been placed.
The Singapore Technologies Kinetics 155 mm/39 calibre LWSPH is built around a very strong space frame type chassis with the diesel power pack and seats for at least four crew members at the front. When travelling the crew are protected by a steel frame which is swung out either side when deployed in the firing position.
The driver, seated at the front right side can select either 4 × 4 or 4 × 2 drive. The 170 hp turbocharged intercooled diesel engine supplies power to the two rear radial piston motors at each wheel station.
The front suspension is of the independent multilink type with hydropneumatic struts, while the rear is an independent trailing arm type with hydropneumatic struts. All wheels are fitted with disc brakes and an ABS system is fitted as standard.
The 155 mm/39 calibre ordnance is mounted at the rear and when deployed in the firing system, the complete system is stabilised by two outriggers that are lowered one either side at the rear of the chassis.
Maximum rate of fire is being quoted as six rounds a minute and a burst rate of three rounds in 15 seconds can be fired. Space is provided for 18 155 mm projectiles and their associated charges with a flick rammer being provided to reduce crew fatigue and maintain rate of fire.
The overall battlefield survivability of the system is enhanced as it can come into and be taken out of action in less than 1 minute, so allowing it to use shoot and scoot tactics. According to Singapore Technologies Kinetics, a quick dash across 500 m takes less than 1 minute.
It can also be integrated with an inertial navigation system and computerised fire-control systems for autonomous operations.
In March 2001, a MoU was signed between Singapore Technologies Kinetics and Oto Melara of Italy to jointly develop a variant of the 155 mm/39 calibre LWSPH.
This MoU provides a framework for joint collaboration on design, manufacturing and agreement on marketing rights with regards to the LWSPH variants. In addition, the MoU sets out the agreement for Oto Melara to provide their 155 mm ordnance for integration with the chassis of the LWSPH variant.
In October 2005, Singapore Technologies Kinetics revealed that another 155 mm/39 calibre system had entered service with the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF). This is called the Singapore Light Weight Howitzer (SLWH) Pegasus. It weighs 5.4 tonnes and is fitted with an Auxiliary Power Unit (APU), which provides the system with a maximum speed of 12 km/h.