Thursday, September 16, 2021

Chinese artillerymen conducted exercise with PHL-03 rocket launchers

China’s People’s Liberation Army soldiers of an artillery regiment conducted a live shell drill on August 16, 2017.

The artillerymen assigned to an army brigade under the PLA 75th Group Army conducted a live shell drill with heavy PHL-03 300mm rocket launcher systems. The PHL-03,  also known as AR2 in its export name,  is the 12-tube 300mm multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) developed by NORINCO for the China’s People’s Liberation Army.

The PHL03 is a highly digitized PHL96 with a computerized fire control system (FCS) incorporating GPS/GLONASS, similar to that of the Type 90A SPMRL, with a four-man crew (compared with three for the BM-30/PHL96), which entered service around 2004-2005, only a year or two after its predecessor, the PHL96. As with the PHL96, the PHL03 is not exactly a guided SPMRL because it is the submunitions that are guided, not the rockets themselves.


The PHL03 is a Chinese version of the Soviet heavy multiple rocket launcher BM-30 Smerch.

Photo by Zhang Zhengju

Photo by Zhang Zhengju

Photo by Zhang Zhengju

Photo by Zhang Zhengju

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About this Author

Dylan Malyasov
U.S. defense journalist and commentator. Aviation photographer. Dylan leads Defence Blog's coverage of global military news, focusing on engineering and technology across the U.S. defense industry.