MIM-72 Chaparral

MIM-72 Chaparral

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MIM-72 Chaparral

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This article is about the missile system. For other uses, see Chaparral
MIM-72A/M48 Chaparral is a US Army self-propelled surface-to-air missile system based on the AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missile system. The launcher is based on the M113 family of vehicles. It entered service with the US Army in 1969 and was phased out between 1990 and 1998. It was intended to be used along with the M163 Vulcan Air Defense System, the Vulcan covering short-range short-time engagements, and the Chaparral for longer range use.



Starting in 1959 the U.S. Army MICOM began development of an ambitious anti-aircraft missile system under their "Forward Area Air Defense" (FAAD) program, known as the MIM-46 Mauler. Mauler was based on a modified M113 chassis carrying a large rotating A-frame rack on top with nine missiles and both long-range search and shorter-range tracking radars. Operation was to be almost entirely automatic, with the operators simply selecting targets from the search radar's display and then pressing "fire". The entire engagement would be handled by the fire control computer.

In testing the Mauler proved to have numerous problems. Many of these were relatively minor, including problems with the rocket motors or fins on the airframe, but others, like problems with the fire control and guidance systems, appeared to be more difficult to solve. Army strategy from the mid-1950s PENTANA study was based on having embedded mobile...
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