Military Wiki
M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System
HIMARS - missile launched.jpg
HIMARS at the White Sands Missile Range in January 2005.
Type Rocket artillery, Tactical ballistic
Place of origin United States
Service history
Wars War in Afghanistan
Syrian Civil War[1]
Iraqi Civil War (2014-present)[2]
Production history
Manufacturer Lockheed Martin Missiles & Fire Control
BAE Systems (Chassis)
Unit cost $5.1 million (2014)[3]
Weight 24,000 lb (10,900 kg)
Length 7 m (23 ft 0 in)
Width 2.4 m (7 ft 10.5 in)
Height 3.2 m (10 ft 6 in)
Crew 3

Traverse 360
Rate of fire 1, 2, 4, All 6
Maximum range 2–300 kilometres (1.2–186.4 mi)

Armor light
480 km (298 mi)
Speed 85 km/h (52.8 mph)
Accuracy Guided

The M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) is a U.S. light multiple rocket launcher mounted on a standard Army M1140 truck frame.

The HIMARS carries six rockets or one MGM-140 ATACMS missile on the U.S. Army's new Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV) five-ton truck, and can launch the entire Multiple Launch Rocket System Family of Munitions (MFOM). HIMARS ammunition is interchangeable with the MLRS M270A1, however it is only able to carry one pod rather than the standard two for the M270 and A1 variants. It was designed as a small, mobile, MLRS, with the ability to 'shoot-and-scoot'.[4]

The launcher is C-130 transportable.[5] The chassis is produced by BAE Systems Mobility & Protection Systems (formerly Armor Holdings Aerospace and Defense Group Tactical Vehicle Systems Division), the OEM of the FMTV. The rocket launching system is produced by Lockheed Martin Missiles & Fire Control.


The M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) is the light, wheeled version of the M270 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS). The HIMARS utilizes the same pod as the M270 MLRS uses. A pod can hold six rockets or a single missile. The windows are made of glass and layers of sapphire.[6]

The 18th Field Artillery Brigade (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, North Carolina was the initial army test bed unit for the M142 HIMARS. C Battery, 3rd Battalion, 27th Field Artillery Regiment began field testing 3 HIMARS prototypes in all types of training events and environments in 1998 as a residual of the Rapid Force Projection Initiative (RFPI) Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration (ACTD). In 2002, the United States Marine Corps arranged with the United States Army to acquire 40 of the systems. Fielding began in 2005. In July 2007, Marines from Fox Battery 2nd Battalion 14th Marine Regiment from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma were deployed to the Anbar Governorate province of Iraq, the first Marine unit to use the HIMARS in combat.

HIMARS was also tested as a common launcher for both artillery rockets and the SLAMRAAM surface-launched variant of the AMRAAM anti-aircraft missile.[7]

In October 2017, a Marine Corps HIMARS fired a rocket while at sea against a land target for the first time from the deck of the amphibious transport dock USS Anchorage (LPD-23), demonstrating the system's ability to operate while on ships to deliver precision fire from a standoff range from shore defenses.[8] The vehicle's targeting software was reworked so it can better fire while on a constantly moving and maneuvering launch platform.[9]


As of September 2007, the Singapore Army proposed to acquire HIMARS systems. The package includes 18 HIMARS launchers, 9 FMTV 5-Ton Trucks and XM31 unitary HE GMLRS pods, plus associated support and communications equipment and services. This proposed package is notable for not involving the M-26 unguided MLRS rockets. In late 2009, Singapore took delivery of the first HIMARS firing unit and achieved Full Operational Capability. The 23rd Battalion, Singapore artillery commissioned its HIMARS battery on 5 September 2011. It marks the first fully GPS-guided HIMARS unit.

Operational history[]

On February 14, 2010, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) for Afghanistan indicated in a press release that it was thought that two rockets fired from a HIMARS unit fell 300 metres short of their intended target and killed 12 civilians during Operation Moshtarak. ISAF suspended the use of the HIMARS until a full review of the incident was completed.[10] A British officer later said that the rockets were on target, that the target was in use by the Taliban, and use of the system has been reinstated.[11] Reports indicate that the civilian deaths were due to the Taliban's use of an occupied dwelling; the presence of civilians at that location was not known to the ISAF forces.[12] An October 21, 2010 report in the New York Times credited HIMARS with aiding the NATO offensive in Kandahar by targeting Taliban commanders' hideouts, forcing many to flee to Pakistan, at least temporarily.[13]

In November 2015, the United States Army revealed they had deployed the HIMARS to Iraq, firing at least 400 rockets at the Islamic State since the beginning of summer.[14] HIMARS detachments were sent to Al Asad Airbase and Al-Taqaddum Air Base in Anbar province. On 4 March 2016, Army HIMARS fired rockets into Syria in support of Syrian rebels fighting ISIL for the first time, with the launchers based in neighboring Jordan.[15]

In January 2016, Lockheed announced the HIMARS had reached 1 million operational hours with U.S. forces, achieving a 99 percent operational readiness rate.[16]

On April 26, 2016, it was announced that the U.S. would be deploying the HIMARS in Turkey near the border with Syria as part of the battle with ISIL.[17] In early September, international media and the U.S. State Department reported a newly deployed HIMARS had engaged ISIL targets in Syria near the Turkish border.[18][19][20]

In October 2016, HIMARS were stationed at Qayyarah Airfield West, some 65 kilometers south of Mosul, taking part in the Battle of Mosul.[21]

On June 14, 2017, a HIMARS was deployed at Al-Tanf Syria to support U.S. backed rebels in the area.[22][23]


An MFOR rocket is launched from a HIMARS

Crew: 3: Gunner, Driver, and Launcher Chief
Weight: 11,000 kg (24,000 lb)
Length: 7 m
Width: 2.4 m
Height: 3.2 m
Vehicle Range: 480 km
Road Speed: 85 km/hour
Armament: 6 × 227 mm M270 series rockets or 1 MGM-140 ATACMS missile

Related developments[]

Lockheed Martin UK and INSYS had jointly developed a demonstrator rocket artillery system similar to HIMARS for the British Army's 'Lightweight Mobile Artillery Weapon System/Rocket' (LIMAWS(R)) program. The system consisted of a single MLRS pod, mounted on a Supacat SPV600 chassis.[24] The LIMAWS(R) programs was cancelled in September 2007.[25]


Map with HIMARS operators in blue

Current operators[]

United States


 United Arab Emirates


  • Jordanian Army (12)
    • 29th HIMARS Battalion, Jordan Royal Artillery Command

Potential and future operators[]


The Department of National Defence considered the purchase of HIMARS. The former Chief of the Land Staff, Lieutenant-General Andrew Leslie, said the plan to acquire rocket launchers was something that "would be considered much further down the road—possibly in the 2012 time frame.[28][29][30][31]


In December 2012, Qatar notified the U.S. of a possible Foreign Military Sale of 7 M142 HIMARS systems, as well as 60 M57 MGM-140 ATACMS Block 1A T2K unitary rockets and 30 M31A1 Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) unitary rockets. The deal would cost an estimated $406 million.[32]


New Multiple Launch Rocket System. Program WR-300 "Homar" Poland. Multiple Launch Rocket System Cooperation between Huta Stalowa Wola, ZM Mesko and Lockheed Martin. 160 launchers will be acquired.[33] Mounted on a Jelcz 663 6x6 chassis.[34]


In 2017 the US State Department has authorized the sale of 54 HIMARS launch vehicles, related resupply systems and ammunition to Romania.[35] In February 2018 the Romanian government approved the purchase.[36][37][38]


Future substitute of the Teruel MRL.

See also[]


  3. Oestergaard, Joakim. "About the HIMARS". Archived from the original on 23 April 2015. Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  4. tom clancy airborne nonfiction book
  5. Youtube: US NEW Weapons 2017 The Powerful M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System HIMARS
  6. "Saint-Gobain delivers sapphire-engineered transparent armor" UPI / press release, 5 November 2013. Accessed: 19 June 2014.
  7. HIMARS Launcher Successfully Fires Air Defense Missile
  8. Marines launch rocket from amphibious ship to destroy land target 70 km away -, 24 October 2017
  9. Marines Fire HIMARS From Ship in Sea Control Experiment With Navy -, 24 October 2017
  10. ISAF Weapon Fails to Hit Intended Target, 12 Civilians Killed Archived 2014-10-27 at the Wayback Machine.
  11. "Operation Moshtarak: missiles that killed civilians 'hit correct target'". Telegraph. 2010-02-16. Retrieved 2010-07-07. 
  12. "Artillery: It Wasn't Me". 2010-02-18. Retrieved 2010-07-07. 
  13. Coalition Forces Routing Taliban in Key Afghan Region
  14. "The U.S. Army Hurls Hundreds of Rockets at Islamic State". Retrieved 2015-11-28. 
  15. In a first, U.S. forces in Jordan have attacked ISIS in Syria -, 11 March 2016
  16. HIMARS High Mobility Artillery Rocket System achieves one million operational hours milestone -, 14 January 2016
  17. Pamuk, Humeyra (26 April 2016). "Turkish minister says U.S. to deploy rocket launchers near Syrian border". Retrieved 29 April 2016. 
  18. Reuters (2016-09-03). "US forces hit Isis targets in Syria with mobile rocket system, official says" (in en-GB). ISSN 0261-3077. 
  19. "US Embassy Turkey on Twitter". 
  20. "Brett McGurk on Twitter". 
  21. CNN visits Qayyara airbase at frontlines of war against ISIS -, 25 October 2016
  24. Missiles and Fire Support at DSEi 2007
  25. UK cancels LIMAWS Gun to pay for operations,, 04 September 2007
  27. "Integration at its best". Ministry of Defence (Singapore). 2010-01-04. Retrieved 1 May 2011. "Men from 23 SA had commenced training with the US Army's HIMARS in March 2009." 
  28. "CASR Background — Artillery — Long-Range Precision Rocket System". Canadian American Strategic Review. Archived from the original on 2009-12-08. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  29. "Canadian army shopping for rocket launchers". CTV. 2009-01-08. Archived from the original on 2009-07-10. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  30. "Canada Seeks MLRS Rocket Systems". Defense Industry Daily. 2009-01-07. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  31. "Long Range Precision Rocket System (LRPRS) – A Multiple- Launch Rocket System – MERX LOI Letter of Interest Notice". Canadian American Strategic Review. Archived from the original on 2009-11-30. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  32. Qatar Requests Sale of HIMARS, ATACMS and GMLRS -, December 24, 2012
  35. "US Approves $1.2 Billion HIMARS, Army Missile Systems Sale to Romania". Defense World. 2017-08-19. Retrieved 2017-08-20. 
  36. Tudor, Radu (16 February 2018). "Romanian government approves purchase of HIMARS, corvettes". Bucharest. Archived from the original on 16 February 2018. Retrieved 17 February 2018. 
  37. "Romania approves purchase of US M142 HIMARS missile/rocket launchers". 17 February 2018. Archived from the original on 17 February 2018. Retrieved 17 February 2018. 
  38. Pecheanu, Gabriel (15 February 2018). "Înzestrarea Armatei Române. Achiziţionarea sistemelor HIMARS şi hotărârea privind programul pentru corvete multifuncţionale, aprobate în şedinţă de Guvern" (in Romanian). Bucharest. Archived from the original on 15 February 2018. Retrieved 17 February 2018. 

External links[]

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