Artillery / Self-propelled howitzers / Koksan

Koksan

General Facts

  • TYPE
    Self-propelled howitzer

  • ORIGIN
    North Korea

  • NICKNAMES
    Koksan (Western nickname)
    M1978 (NATO designation)
    M1989 (NATO designation)

  • DESIGNED
    1970's

  • DESIGNER
    State arsenals

  • PRODUCTION
    1978 - 1990's

  • PRODUCERS
    North Korea - State arsenals

  • QUANTITY
    Unknown

  • UNIT COST
    Unknown

  • CHARACTERISTICS
    Very long range
    Very powerful shells
    Large and heavy
    Very low rate of fire
    Limited mobility
    Exposed crew

Introduction

The Koksan is a self-propelled howitzer of North Korean origin. It was designed for very long range shelling and for several decades was the longest range conventional artillery piece in use. The name Koksan is derived from the city it was first spotted. The original designation is not known.

Layout

The Koksan is based on the Type 59 tank chassis and mount a very large 170mm gun which is believed to be an ex-Russian naval or coastal artillery gun. The gun is mounted in an open superstructure and is stabilized by two large spades at the rear. An improved model is based on a chassis similar to the Soviet 2S7 Pion and carries more ammunition.

Firepower

The massive 170mm gun fires very powerful shells. The range of standard shells is believed to be about 40 km and rocket assisted shells can be fired out to 60 km. The range and firepower is offset by a very low rate of fire of up to 2 rounds per 5 minutes.

Protection

The Type 59 chassis is armored but only provides protection for the driver. The gun crew is not carried on the Koksan and in the firing position the crew is fully exposed. The only protection that is provided is the ability to use the weapon well behind the front line due to its long range.

Mobility

The Type 59 chassis provides a reasonable mobility on roads and in the field. The maximum road speed is estimated a 40 km/h. The high center of gravity and large gun make it difficult to travel in the field.

Users

North Korea has up to 500 large caliber guns. The Koksan makes up an unknown portion of these guns. A number of M1978 was exported to Iran and was extensively used in the Iran-Iraq war.

Variants

M1978

The M1978 is the original model of the Koksan. It is based on the Type 59 tank chassis.

M1989

The M1989 is an improved model of the Koksan. It is based on a different tracked chassis. The advantages are a lower center of gravity and 12 shells are carried on board.

Media

Copyright © 2002 - 2014 Weaponsystems.net