For helicopters (7, 12 & 19 tube)

2 different types of rocket launcher for helicopters in different sizes are available :

  • lightweight rocket launcher in composite material : 7, 12 and 19 tube
  • metallic rocket launcher in aluminium : 19 tube

Lightweight rocket launchers

Low mass is of utmost importance in helicopter applications.

Thales lightweight rocket launchers (FZ® brand) made out of composite material are on average about 50% lighter than comparable metallic rocket launcher, have no corrosion issue and other features. They have been especially developed for rotary wings due to limitation of payload.

3 different sizes are available:

The weight of the 19-tube variant of the rocket launcher was reduced from the current 76 kg for an aluminum rocket launcher (M159 or US-M261) to a weight of 38 kg for the composite rocket launcher (FZ225).

During the development of the composite rocket launchers, strict military design processes were applied including a full testing program according to MIL-STD 810H. 

No US elements or components are integrated in Thales lightweight rocket launchers.

Metallic rocket launcher

M159 is an aluminum high-drag, straight cylindrical 19-tube reusable launcher designed for helicopter use. The rocket launcher M159 is equipped with removable universal dual purpose FZ125 detent mechanisms enabling to fire FFAR and WA rockets.

It can be fitted with an optional removable rear fairing.

Digital smart rocket launcher

A new 6 tube (FZ606) digital smart rocket launcher with full LOBL capability for helicopters has been developped enbaling to fire guided rocket FZ275 LGR.

Features :

  • firing of Laser Guided Rocket FZ275 LGR with LOBL mode
  • Rocket identification
  • Discriminate LGR from ballistic and identify LGR (rocket motor; warhead and fuze)
  • Report complete inventory to the Weapon Management System or GSE
  • Bi-directional communication with FZ275 LGR
    • In flight transmission of laser code to the LGR
    • Transmission of target, aircraft and environmental
    • data to optimise the LGR trajectory
    • Get BIT status from LGR
  • Get LOBL status from LGR
  • Full flexibility (mix unguided and guided rocket)
  • equipped with LEP : Protecting the lenses of each LGR from aggressive environments rocket plume and other nearby weapons and enabling LOBL (Lock-On Before Launch)
  • Service Life: Up to 30 years and 6,000 flight hours with a mid-life overhaul
  • Rocket detection : rocket presence even in case of misfire or hang fire

7-tube (lightweight)

Thales Belgium – Rocket system 70mm (2.75”) : 7-tube lightweight composite rocket launchers for rotary wings : FZ233 & FZ220

FZ233

  • provided with Launcher Interface Unit (LIU)
  • Mass (empty) : ~26 kg
  • Length (nominal) : 1653 mm

FZ220

  • provided without Launcher Interface Unit (LIU)
  • Mass (empty) : ~20 kg
  • Length (nominal) : 1653 mm

12-tube (lightweight)

Thales Belgium – Rocket system 70mm (2.75”) : 12-tube lightweight composite rocket launchers for rotary wings : FZ231 and FZ219

FZ231

  • provided with Launcher Interface Unit (LIU)
  • Mass (empty) : ~31kg
  • Length (nominal) : 1658mm

FZ219

  • provided without Launcher Interface Unit (LIU)
  • Mass (empty) : ~29 kg
  • Length (nominal) : 1658 mm

19-tube (lightweight)

Thales Belgium – Rocket system 70mm (2.75”) : 19-tube lightweight composite rocket launchers for rotary wings : FZ225 and FZ207

FZ225

  • provided with Launcher Interface Unit (LIU)
  • Mass (empty) : ~46 kg
  • Length (nominal) : 1668 mm

FZ207

  • provided without Launcher Interface Unit (LIU)
  • Mass (empty) : ~41 kg
  • Length (nominal) : 1668 mm

19-tube metallic

Thales Belgium  – Rocket system 70mm (2.75”) : 19-tube metallic rocket launchers for rotary wings : M159

M159

  • Mass: 80 kg max
  • Length: 1653 mm (nominal)

6-tube Aluminium Digital & Smart

FZ606

  • Mass (empty) : ~80 kg
  • Length (nominal) : 1900 mm

Features :

  • firing of Laser Guided Rocket FZ275 LGR with LOBL mode
  • Rocket identification
  • Discriminate LGR from ballistic and identify LGR (rocket motor; warhead and fuze)
  • Report complete inventory to the Weapon Management System or GSE
  • Bi-directional communication with FZ275 LGR
    • In flight transmission of laser code to the LGR
    • Transmission of target, aircraft and environmental
    • data to optimise the LGR trajectory
    • Get BIT status from LGR
  • Get LOBL status from LGR
  • Full flexibility (mix unguided and guided rocket)
  • equipped with LEP : Protecting the lenses of each LGR from aggressive environments rocket plume and other nearby weapons and enabling LOBL (Lock-On Before Launch)
  • Service Life: Up to 30 years and 6,000 flight hours with a mid-life overhaul
  • Rocket detection : rocket presence even in case of misfire or hang fire