Katyusha Rocket

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The rocket launcher Katyusha is a weapon of artillery ( multiple rocket launcher ) developed and used by Red Army during WWII. It was dubbed at the time of " Stalin's Organ " by German troops (in German: Stalinorgel) In reference to the agent of Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, Josef Stalin. Katyusha was already the name given by the Red Army withdrawn from a famous song during the war, telling the story of a young Russian ( Katyuhsa, Russian diminutive for Catherine ) who took her boyfriend away by war.

The Katyusha is a military truck ( usually the ZIS-6) Originally equipped with a rocket launcher BM-8, BM-13 and BM-21. Compared to most common artillery equipment was considered fragile but with a very low cost manufacturing and high mobility .

Development historyEdit

Its development was considered top secret by the Soviet government, which drew particular attention to the design, training

BM-8 Katyusha

detachments for the exclusive operation of the Katyusha . The first time he went into combat was in July 1941 the city of Orsha in the current Belarus, Where a total of seven rocket launchers caused considerable casualties in the German forces.

Following the initial success, the command of war in the USSR led to the construction of new Katyushas and the creation of several regiments equipped with the launcher, aiming to support the movement of infantry. A total of 554 launchers were in service in late 1941, a total of eight regiments, 35 independent battalions and two batteries alone.

The rocketEdit

800px-BM-13-Katjuscha Berlin

BM-13 Katyusha

The Katyusha rocket is formed by the party propellant that propels the rocket and the party or explosive warhead.

The rocket has a low accuracy and short range, being relatively simple and inexpensive to manufacture, compared with other artifacts of the genre. Homemade, are used by Palestinian fighters against Israel, although not equal to the models used by the Soviets, who have seen improvements through the decades.

After the Second World War, rockets were used in various conflicts and wars, among others, in Korean War, Vietnam War, War in Afghanistan, Second Lebanon War (At Hizbollah) Iraq War and are currently being used by Taliban against Armed Forces of the United States of America and multinational troops and installations in Afghanistan.

More recently, it was observed using similar to the Katyusha launchers in conflicts involving Russia and Georgia in 2008.



The Katyusha was an artillery piece introduced by the Soviets from 1941 in various calibers. BM -8 launchers, rocket using M8, were placed in a wide variety of vehicles, from trailers pulled by motorcycles, trucks, tanks and even chassis river gunboats . The number of rails release varied depending on the vehicle, the WB -8- 12 with 12 rails, the BM -8- 24 with 24 tracks and so on, with models of 36, 40, 48 and 72 rails. The small size of the M -8 rockets made them ineffective against targets protected, however. Nevertheless, there have been over 2,400 launchers BM -8.


The BM -13 was the second weapon nicknamed Katyusha (small Catarina ), also known as the body of Stalin. Due to its larger size, was less versatile than the version of 82 mm but on the other hand, their firepower was much greater and the gun overall, more effective, and continued to be manufactured and used after the war. The system was introduced in 1930, and was kept under complete secret until the Soviet military, the batteries being handled by troops of the NKVD, and was an unpleasant surprise to the Germans. Were produced around 6800 launchers

BM-21 GradEdit

One of the most modern version of the Katyusha. Grad is the world’s most widely used rocket artillery system.Its success in combat has led other countries to copy it or to develop similar systems.


Katyusha BM-8 Katyusha BM-13
Model BM -8- 24 on the chassis of light tank T-60

or a Zis-6

BM13 -16 chassis ZIS -5 ( original model )
Caliber 82mm 132mm
Salve 8 M- 24 rockets fired in 15–20 seconds 16 M-13 rockets in 7 to 10 / 2
Weight of Rocket: 8 kg 41,5 kg
Weight of Warhead 640 grams 21,3 kg
'Elevation of the launcher'
Range 5,500m 8,500 m
Inclination of the launcher 5º For each side 5º For each side
Zis-6 Vehicle weight

6400 kg

3100 kg without the rockets, 7200 kg with the rockets
Truck Length 4.1m 6,06m
Truck Width 2.3m 2,23m

Truck Height (Without the Launcher)

1.75m 2,16m

Truck Armor

35 mm (front), 15mm (side ), 10 mm ( tower)




Truck Engine GAZ -202, 6 cylinder petrol (76 hp ). petrol, water cooled, 73 hp, 4-speed unsynchronized
Truck Maximum Speed 44 km / h ( road ) 20 km / h ( off road )

60 km/h (Road and Off Road)

Autonomy 350 km 175 km
Crew 2 2
Traction 4x2 4x2

The Katyusha BM-21is one of the most modern Katyushas and is being used in many countries and in great numbers

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