|Manufacturer:||Patria Vammas Oy|
Patria Weapon Systems have considerable experience in the design, development and production of a variety of mortar systems and their associated families of ammunition.
Early in 2005 Patria Weapon Systems started development, as a private venture, on a new lightweight 120 mm smooth bore turreted mortar system called NEMO (NEw MOrtar).
This was shown in public for the first time in mid-2006 integrated onto a Patria Vehicles Armoured Modular Vehicle (8×8) (AMV) armoured personnel carrier (APC).
NEMO is seen by the company as complimentary to the twin 120 mm AMOS (Advanced MOrtar System) developed by Patria Weapon Systems and BAE Systems Hägglunds of Sweden and covered in detail in a separate entry.
By late 2007 development of NEMO was complete and a first production example will be used for extensive verification and qualification trials scheduled to take place in Finland in mid-2008.
Launch customer for NEMO is Slovenia who has already placed a contract for 135 Patria Vehicles Armoured Modular Vehicles (AMV) (8 × 8) which includes an undisclosed batch of vehicles fitted with NEMO 120 mm mortar system.
First production NEMO 120 mm mortar turret for Slovenia will come from Patria Weapon Systems in Finland, the remainder of the NEMO 120 mm mortar turrets will be manufactured under license in Slovenia by Rotis.
Main advantage of NEMO 120 mm mortar turret is its light weight of around 1,500 kg which allows it to be integrated onto a much wider range of chassis, tracked and wheeled, than AMOS which typically weighs around 4 tonnes.
The baseline NEMO turret provides protection from small arms fire and shell splinters but a modular ballistic protection system is available for higher levels of ballistic protection. NEMO turret also incorporates a number of signature reduction measures.
From an early stage in the development programme it was decided to make NEMO as simple as possible in the base line configuration to drive down costs but with a clear growth path to the future.
The 120 mm smooth bore breech loaded mortar barrel used in NEMO is ballistically identical to that installed in the twin 120 mm AMOS.
NEMO was successfully fired for the first time in February 2006 with the full up system being fired in May the same year.
A typical NEMO self-propelled system would have a crew of four consisting of, driver, commander and two loaders who would prepare/load ammunition trays located below the turret ring. Loading is semi automatic once the projectile has been put onto the loading trays.
The amount of ammunition being carried will depend on the chassis that NEMO is integrated onto but in the case of the AMV this is expected to be about 50 to 60 rounds of 120 mm ammunition. All standard natures of smooth bore mortar ammunition can be fired as well as smart projectiles.
Time to fire the first projectiles upon coming to a halt is 30 seconds and time taken to come out of action is 10 seconds.
According to Patria Weapon Systems a burst rate of fire of three rounds can be fired in 12 seconds with the system also capable of six MRSI (Multiple Round Simultaneous Impact) missions.
Maximum range depends on projectile/charge combination but is typically over 10 km. Turret traverse and weapon elevation is all electric with manual back up controls.
NEMO has a day/night sight for direct fire as well as the normal indirect fire capability with all of the crew in the hull under full armour protection. The turret could also be fitted with a 7.62 mm machine gun and electrically operated smoke grenade launchers if required.
The first example of NEMO has the same fire-control system (FCS) as that installed in the AMOS currently being supplied to the Finnish Defence Forces (4 + 20).
Other FCS could be also be installed according to customer requirements as could a muzzle velocity radar system which would feed information to the FCS to improve accuracy.
Although all NEMO trials to date have been on an AMV (8 × 8) chassis, its design is such that it can be integrated on a wide range of other chassis, tracked and wheeled (8 × 8 and 6 × 6). The former include the BAE Systems Hägglunds BvS 10 all-terrain articulated tracked vehicles currently in service with the Netherlands and the UK.
The low profile of NEMO allows the system to be integrated onto a wheeled chassis at the same time as retaining its air transport requirement in a Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules aircraft.
In mid-2007 Patria Weapon Systems was awarded a concept study contract from the Finnish Navy covering the integration of its NEMO 120 mm mortar turret onto a Watercat M12 surface craft developed by Marine Alutech Oy.
The concept study contract was completed late in 2007 and this is expected to be followed by a contract for a complete prototype for extensive user trials. This is expected to take two years and then be followed by production.
For the naval application, the current NEMO 120 mm mortar turret system will be modified for its new role including providing a fire on the move capability and measures to stop salt water corrosion in the harsh naval environment.
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