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Iran Develops Twin-Launcher for Zelzal-2 Short Range Rocket

Iran has developed a twin-missile launcher system for the Zelzal-2 short range missile, effectively doubling the firing rate of the system. Salvo firing is considered by Iran to be the most effective missile-defense countermeasure. The new launcher was tested in public for the first time Sunday 27 September 2009, firing a single Zelzal-2 missiles, fired for a dismounted new multiple launcher while a second missile was standing by on the second rail. (read more...)

The solid-rocket powered Zelzal-2 missile has a range of 130-185 miles (210-300 kilometers). Is length is 8.32 m and the diameter is 0.61 m. The missile has a launch weight of 3,400 kg., including a 600 kg warhead carried over a range of 200 km.

The missile is carried and launched from a truck-mounted rail. Prior to the 2006 Second Lebanon War Iran supplied Zelzal-2 missiles to the Lebanese Hezbullah, which tried to launch them against Israel. However, most of the missiles were destroyed in a preemptive strike by the Israel Air Force. To improve the missile's survivability and performance Iran is accelerating pre-launch preparation and increasing the system's agility and mobility, General Salami said.

Above and left: Zelzal-2 being fired from the new dismounted twin-launcher developed in Iran. Photos: FARS news agency.

Iran is performing these test launches, to include short, medium and long range missiles, as part of the Payambar-e Azam (Great Prophet IV) military exercises conducted by the country's revolutionary guards (IRGC). The first test conducted early Sunday 27 September 2009 involved Zelzal-2 short range guided missiles, fired for a dismounted new multiple launcher. Other tests included launching of Fateh 110 guided rocket covering 120 miles (193 km) and the Tondar 69 – a short range missile, converted from a Chinese CSS-8 (SA-2 derivative) missile, capable of covering a range of 93 miles (150 km). General Hossein Salami, head of the Revolutionary Guard Air Force, said follow-on test firings scheduled for this week also include medium-range Shahab-1 and Shahab-2 missiles on Sunday night and long-range Shahab-3 missiles on Monday. All photos: FARS news agency

Fateh 110 is believed to be a guided version of the Zelzal-1rocket.