The Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) has officially handed over the Archer artillery systems to the country’s armed forces and the artillery regiment.

A 9 Artillery Regiment in Boden commanding officer colonel Johan Pekkari said: "This day is very important for the regiment, these pieces are a big part of our identity as a regiment and as gunners."

During the handover ceremony, a demonstration involving the firing of two Archer guns was carried out.

The Artillery Regiment unit is set to receive 24 series of pieces, which will be made throughout this year.

Major general Anders Brännström said: "The focus for the Artillery Regiment will now be on getting as much power and capacity from the Archer pieces as we possibly can. Materials, staff and completed operations are what create this capacity."

The FMV took delivery of the first production series Archer artillery system from BAE Systems‘ facility in Karlskoga, Sweden, in October 2015.

"These pieces are a big part of our identity as a regiment and as gunners."

BAE received a $200m contract in 2010 to supply of a total of 48 artillery systems, including 24 each for the Swedish and Norwegian Armed Forces, as well as associated ammunition handling systems.

The company handed over the first four Archer systems to the Swedish Government in 2013, which are used by the Swedish artillery regiment.

A development of the 155mm towed FH77 L39 system, the Archer is a fully automated 155mm howitzer and a M151 Protector remote-controlled weapon station mounted on a modified 6×6 chassis of Volvo A30D all-terrain truck.

It is designed for rapid deployment and high-mobility in demanding operational scenarios.

Image: Archer in place outside the handover ceremony. Photo: Jesper Sundström / Swedish Armed Forces.