IranMiddle East

Iran unveils kit to turn artillery rockets into guided missiles

Iran unveiled a number of new armaments last week, including a light armored personnel carrier, a network-connected robot and a conversion kit which can turn artillery rockets into precision-guided missiles.

The conversion kit, called the ‘Labeik’, was presented in an event attended by General Mohammad Hossein Dadras, deputy commander of the regular military and Brigadier General Kioumars Heidar, the ground forces commander, the report says.

​According to Jane’s, the Labeik appears to be compatible with Iran’s 610mm Zelzal heavy artillery rocket. The kit is similar to a system used in the Fateh-110 family, and is attached between the rocket’s warhead and engine.

“There is nothing new in the conversion itself, they have been doing it for years, and they already showed conversion kits for the Fatah 110 family of missiles,” says Uzi Rubin, one of the pioneers of Israel’s earliest attempts at missile defense, according to The Times of Israel. “What’s new here are the aerodynamics of the winglets — very unique, unseen in Iran to date and unseen in any other country. Going to indigenous design rather than copying others indicates self-confidence. The purpose of the new and unique aerodynamics is probably to increase the maneuverability of the converted rockets.”

Other presented systems were the ‘Rouintan’ armored vehicle – a four-wheeled double-cab personnel carrier armed with a heavy machine-gun and featuring a pickup-like cargo compartment in the back. According to Jane’s, the vehicle was shown resisting not only 12.7mm machine-gun rounds, but also a high energy anti-tank (HEAT) projectile. Interior photos show a dashboard similar to a Toyota Land Cruiser 70, but the Jane’s report notes that the dashboard may be a domestic copy produced for other Iranian military vehicles.

​The third specimen is the ‘Heider-1’, a six-wheeled robot, which, judging by photos provided by the Irna news agency, is a versatile unmanned platform which can carry loads or be rigged with a remotely-fired assault rifle. Described by Defense World as “network-oriented,” the robot reportedly can detect objects and obstacles and rotate 360 degrees while standing in place.

​New armaments, including a new surveillance drone and a mobile jamming device, were reportedly officially delivered to Iranian military forces during the event which took place last week.

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