Wed, Jul 09, 2003 - Page 4 News List

Army rocket system passes final test

By Brian Hsu  /  STAFF REPORTER WITH AGENCIES

The Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology (CSIST) announced that it has solved some technical problems that caused the launcher of a multiple-launch rocket system it developed to burn during test-firing.

The institute made the information public at yesterday's press conference, held by the Defense Ministry.

The problems with the locally-built RT-2000 (雷霆-2000) multiple-launch rocket system were in the material of the launcher, which was designed to be light for easier carriage and loading.

But the material of the launcher could not sustain high heat and a launcher made of the material burned during test-firing at the end of last year, the CSIST said.

After the addition of some new materials into the launcher, the CSIST said, the launcher performed well enough to pass the test last month.

The RT-2000 is a new weapon system that the CSIST has developed independently, which has drawn criticism for being unreliable. But after repeated improvements over the past few years, the RT-2000 has won confidence from its major buyer -- the army.

Meanwhile, the army confirmed yesterday that it would begin mass production the first locally-designed light armored vehicle, which is similar in design to the French-made Piranha. Production is scheduled to be completed in February, 2007.

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