The M-87 Orkan MLR system was developed in the former Yugoslavia by the Artillery department of the Military Technical Institute during the 1980’s. Despite being a capable vehicle, it wasn’t manufactured in any significant numbers, with only 4 in the former Yugoslavia. It served in the Balkans Wars of the 1990’s and its believed that these 4 vehicles were inherited by Croatia where they are still in service.
The launcher consists of 12, 262mm launch tubes mounted on a FAP 2832 truck chassis. A standard rocket is 4.85m long and weights 390kg. Various warheads such as HE, HE-FRAG, thermobaric and cluster warheads with 288 dual-purpose bomblets, or 24 magnetic sensor-fused anti-tank mines can be fitted
A standard rocket has a range of 50 km. An extended range rocket is 4.88m long and weights 404 kg, with a maximum range of 65 km.
The vehicle was manufactured in Iraq and seen in public during the 1988 during defence exhibition in Iraq, under the designation Ababil-50. Its believed that 8 were manufactured and are no longer in service.
Serbia use the Orkan launching tubes and equipment mounted on their ageing ZIL-135 launchers under the designation M-96 Orkan II (please see separate entries in Serbia section).