According to Umair Aslam in Defense Talks, the Pakistani Army is set to receive the 2nd batch of Chinese-made NORINCO SH-15 Self-Propelled Howitzers (export variant of the PCL-181). A ceremony was also held in China to mark the production of 56 SH-15 for the Pakistani Army.
The official induction of the SH-15 in the Pakistani army took place on 15 March 2021 (other sources mention 2022). Pakistan is said to have purchased around 300 units with TOT to further build these self-propelled howitzers locally at Heavy Industries Taxila.
The SH-15, which is the export version of the Chinese army’s PCL-181 (PCL is an acronym derived from pinyin, meaning Gun Vehicle Howitzer), is a self-propelled howitzer designed and manufactured by the Chinese defense company NORINCO. It is a 155mm caliber artillery system that is mounted on a Taian GM 6×6 chassis. The SH-15 has a combat weight of approximately 28,000 kg and is powered by a 520hp diesel engine, which provides a maximum road speed of up to 90 km/h, with a range of up to 500 km. The howitzer has a crew of 5: driver, gunner, and three artillerymen.
The main armament of the SH-15 is a 155mm/52 caliber gun, which is capable of firing a variety of rounds, including high-explosive, armor-piercing, and smoke rounds. The gun has a maximum range of approximately 30 km and can fire up to 6 rounds per minute.
The SH-15 also features a semi-automatic loading system, which reduces the time required to load and fire the gun. The howitzer has an onboard ammunition storage capacity of up to 30 rounds and can carry additional rounds in a separate ammunition vehicle. It is equipped with an advanced fire control system that includes a digital ballistic computer, a GPS, and a laser rangefinder. The system provides accurate targeting information and allows the gunner to quickly adjust the aim of the gun to compensate for factors such as wind and temperature.
The SH-15 also has a fully automated hydraulic system, which allows the gun to be raised and lowered quickly and accurately. The system also provides stability and reduces the recoil of the gun during firing.