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US Approves Italy’s Acquisition of M142 HIMARS Rocket Launchers for $400M

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Italy is set to acquire M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems to aid in maintaining stability in Europe.

The U.S. Department of State approved on Friday the possible foreign military sale of 21 HIMARS rocket launchers and related equipment valued at $400 million to the Italian Army. Lockheed Martin, as the primary contractor, will manufacture the weapon systems for the government of Italy.

HIMARS, a long-range, mobile and precision fire launcher, can be transported on a C-130 cargo aircraft and operated by a three-man crew.

Italy expects the new units to generate savings in terms of training and peacetime logistics. This amid Italian Army plans to reorganize the 5th Superga Artillery Regiment into two subordinate units: a HIMARS battalion and a Multiple Launch Rocket System battalion. The 5th Superga provides indirect fire support to NATO Rapid Deployment Corps – Italy.

The military service currently operates a guided multiple launch rocket system capable of firing at a 70-kilometer range.

Italy’s HIMARS order also includes one M31A2 GMLRS Unitary High-Explosive Pods with Insensitive Munitions Propulsion System, GMLRS-U flight surveillance kit, AN/PRC-158 multi-channel tactical radios and installation kits, Harris installation kits for 160W high-frequency radio systems, RF-7800i and CU100 training rigs, and a missile common test device trainer.

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