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Roland



Overview


Roland

Roland surface to air missile being launched from US XM975 prototype launch vehicle.
Source: US Army - © Public domain

Origin
France
Germany
Type
Surface to air missile
Entered service
1977 for Roland 1
1978 for Roland 2
1989 for Roland 3
Status
In service
Development
1963 - mid 1970’s
Developer
France - Aérospatiale
Germany - Bölkow
Production
Mid 1970's - 1993 (and possibly later)
Producer
France - Euromissile
Germany - Euromissile
Number produced
26.000 by 2002
Designations
MIM-115 (US service)
Notable users
France
Germany
Spain
Iraq

Description


Introduction

Roland is a surface to air missile of French / German origin. It is a supersonic short range surface to air missile intended to engage helicopter and fast moving aircraft.

Design

The Roland is fired from its launch tube using twin arm missile launcher. Roland comes as both armored self-propelled systems for frontline use and as static system mounted on a truck or shelter. The missile has a solid propellant rocket motor and gains initial velocity via a booster charge. The warhead is fitted with both contact and radar proximity fuse.

Guidance

Roland 1 is a fair weather only system that uses an optical tracker which is manually operated by the gunner. The gunner tracks the target and the fire control system provides course adjustment to the missile via radio commands. The Roland 2 has a dual operating mode, adding the option for automated tracking via a fire control radar. This makes the Roland 2 an all weather system. Even during an engagement fire control modes can be switched.

Firepower

The Roland 1 and 2 missiles can engage targets with speeds of up to Mach 1.2 can be engaged between 10 m and 5.5 km altitude at a range between 500 m and 6.3 km. One target can be engaged at a time. The Roland 3 is a faster flying missile with increased range an altitude limits. Lethal radius of the warhead is 8 m, or even more on the Roland 3.

Users

The main users of the Roland system were France and Germany. The United States briefly adopted the system but withdrew from the project. The Roland was exported to several nations. Most notably Iraq, which used the system Iran-Iraq and Gulf wars.

Variants


Roland

Roland surface to air missile.
Source: Rama - © GNU Attribution Share Alike license

Roland 1
The Roland 1 is the optical tracking only version of the Roland. Although developed at the same time as Roland 2, this was the first to enter service since the launch vehicles proved less complicated to develop.
Roland 2
All weather variant of the Roland which was developed alongside the Roland 1. The only difference is the presence of a transponder feeding information to a second channel on the launch vehicle's tracking radar.
Roland 3
Much improved version of the Roland 2 which was developed a decade later. The Roland 3 was developed to engage faster flying targets at longer distances. The heavier warhead is much improved. The preformed fragments travel twice as fast compared to Roland 1 and 2. This results in a larger kill radius and is effect against faster targets. In order to cope with the increased weight new booster and sustainer engines provide more thrust. Increasing flight speed, maximum altitude and maximum range.

Details


Facts Roland 1 Roland 2 Roland 3
General
Origin
France / Germany
Type
Surface to air missile
Dimensions
Length
2.4 m
Diameter
0.16 m
Wingspan
0.5 m
Weight
65 kg
84 kg including container
Guidance
Guidance mode
Command control via radio
Tracking mode
Optical tracker only
Warhead
Type
HE hollow charge
Weight
6.5 kg warhead
3.3 kg explosive
Fuse
Dual mode, contact and radar proximity
Lethal radius
8 m
Engagement envelope
Propulsion
Solid fuel sustainer motor, 200 kg thrust
Solid fuel booster, 1.600 kg thrust
Speed
500 m/s maximum
Range
6.3 km maximum
0.5 km minimum
Altitude
5.5 km maximum
10 m minimum

Media


Roland launch vehicles


Marder Roland

The German army Marder Roland is a tracked armored launch vehicle for the Roland 2 surface to air missile.