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Thread: Artillery in the 21st Century

  1. #11
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    Well, you still have the G-6 and its latest incarnation as RWG-52. Given, it has a purpose-build chassis instead of a modded COTS one and it is a 48t package on six wheels instead of <30t like most other wheeled artillery systems. Still she looks business, is wheeled, has the armour and provides the punch...

  2. #12

    DATE:09/04/10

    SOURCE:Flight International

    Indian air force orders Harop loitering munitions


    By Arie Egozi

    The Indian air force is to purchase Israel Aerospace Industries' Harop loitering munition system, with deliveries next year.

    Suitable for launch from a variety of platforms, the long-endurance Harop has tactical unmanned air vehicle-type capabilities, including an electro-optical/infrared seeker providing 360° coverage. The aircraft can search for, detect and attack high-value mobile, time-critical and moving targets at land or sea, and with pinpoint accuracy from long range, IAI says.

    Each Harop system comprises transportable launchers and a mission control shelter that provides a man-in-the-loop function to approve engagements or abort attacks in real time to avoid collateral damage. The system can be used across a range of scenarios, from low- to high-intensity conflicts, urban warfare and counter-terror operations.


    © Billypix

    After launch, a Harop air vehicle navigates towards a target area and loiters while searching for targets. If an attack mission is aborted, the UAV can be returned to loitering mode before making a new strike. Another Harop can be used to deliver real-time video to support battle damage assessment tasks.

    IAI's success builds on its previous sale of Harpy attack drones to India several years ago, and follows a German army order for the Harop system signed last year with the company and Rheinmetall Defence.

  3. #13

    U.S. Army's Truck Choice Puts Rocket Launcher Program in a Bind

    By KATE BRANNEN

    Published: 27 Apr 2010 17:49

    The U.S. Army's decision to give the next contract to build Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles to Oshkosh instead of incumbent BAE Systems has complicated the procurement of the service's High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS).

    "We were in a crunch once Oshkosh got that award," Col. Dave Rice, program manager for precision fires, rocket and missile systems, said during an April 27 conference call with reporters. The change has opened up "a big Pandora's box," he said.

    Currently, the government sends FMTV chassis from BAE's plant in the company's facility in Sealy, Texas, to Lockheed Martin, which makes the rocket launchers and installs them on the new trucks.

    But as BAE shuts its line down and Oshkosh prepares to begin production, Rice expects a gap right when the HIMARS program needs chassis.

    The Army has two more years of procuring HIMARS, but there is a 14-month lag between the time the HIMARS production contract is awarded and the time the system is produced, said Rice.

    The Army planned to procure its last 44 BAE chassis for the HIMARS system in fiscal year 2011, said Rice, but BAE is expected to discontinue FMTV production over the period of time it would take to build the chassis.

    BAE's loss put the HIMARS program in an "immediate bind," he said.

    Some of the HIMARS chassis will be included in the Army's last buy of FMTVs from BAE, said Rice, but that leaves one more year's worth of BAE chassis that the HIMARS program needs.

    "We need advanced authorization to procure those and we are working that action right now," said Rice. "If we're not able to get our last 44 chassis out of BAE, then we've got to start looking at some serious options."

    Rice is also worried that the Oshkosh trucks won't have cabs that protect their crews as well as BAE's Increased Crew Protection (ICP) cab.

    "The design of the ICP CAB is proprietary to BAE," said Rice.

    The Army could buy the rights to the ICP cab, but they are expensive, he said.

    The service will have to see if the cab changes are militarily significant, he said.

  4. #14

    U.S. Army May Salvage Parts of NLOS-LS

    By KATE BRANNEN

    Published: 27 Apr 2010 17:54

    Not sure why saving the CLU will mean anything worth a sh1t but hey IF they can recoup anything of the fortune spent so far then good on them?

    U.S. Army officials are debating whether to salvage parts of the Non-Line of Sight Launch System (NLOS-LS), a program they have slated for cancellation.

    "The scope of what's going to be preserved and what's not going to be preserved is still kind of open in my mind," said Barry Pike, deputy program executive officer for fires in the Army's Program Executive Office for Missiles and Space. He spoke April 27 with reporters during a conference call.

    Senior Army leaders decided April 22 to recommend the program's cancellation by the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Service officials plan to formally deliver the recommendation this week, said Army spokesman Lt. Col. Jimmie Cummings.

    The final decision rests with Pentagon acquisition chief Ashton Carter because NLOS-LS is an acquisition category one joint program.

    Part of the Army's Brigade Combat Team Modernization program, NLOS-LS is also intended for the Navy's Littoral Combat Ship.

    There are two major components to NLOS-LS: the Precision Attack Missile and the Container Launch Unit (CLU). Raytheon is responsible for developing the missile and Lockheed Martin builds the CLU.

    According to sources, Army acquisition executive Malcolm O'Neill did not participate in the April 22 meeting. From 2000 to 2006, O'Neill served as vice president and chief technical officer of Lockheed Martin, and from 1996 to 2000, he served as vice president for operations and best practices in the space and strategic missiles division at the company.

    According to Pike, the CLU may have a life beyond NLOS-LS.

    The government owns data rights to the CLU "that may still be useful for the Army to do organic fires from [infantry brigade combat teams] and so the final decision on what's going to happen to the NLOS program is not quite soup yet," Pike said.

    Col. Dave Rice, who was in the room during last week's decision, said he thought the requirement for NLOS-LS remains. Rice serves as program manager for precision fires, rocket and missile systems.

    "The question that the Army has to grapple with now is what is going to replace that capability that's lost," he said. That decision will involve "a lot of senior leadership guidance" and "modeling, simulation and analysis," he added.

    "It will be up to the user community and senior Army leadership to decide how best to fill that gap," said Rice.

    GMLRS Milestone

    The conference call was scheduled to announce Lockheed Martin's delivery of the 10,000th Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) rocket to the Army.

    Lockheed is funding an internal research and development effort to improve the GMLRS, said Scott Arnold, Lockheed Martin vice president for precision fires programs. The company calls the initiative "GMLRS-plus." The new rocket is a test platform on which Lockheed can explore technologies that the Army might be interested in down the line, said Arnold.

    The company is evaluating the integration of a semi-active laser seeker onto the rocket, he said. The technology is derived from the seeker the company uses on its DAGR rocket.

    Arnold said the company is also looking at a scalable effects warhead and extending the range of GMLRS with a more maneuverable airframe. The company has two more flight tests planned at White Sands Missile Range, N.M., this year.

  5. #15

    Quote Originally Posted by buglerbilly View Post
    Not sure why saving the CLU will mean anything worth a sh1t but hey IF they can recoup anything of the fortune spent so far then good on them?
    Because the CLU can be used to autonomously fire other missiles than the PAM: lofted Hellfire, VL Stinger, etc.

  6. #16

    Ares

    A Defense Technology Blog


    Retired Army Gen. Defends Need for NLOS

    Posted by Amy Butler at 4/30/2010 12:07 PM CDT

    Gen. Paul Gormon, retired U.S. Army officer and advisor to the service and Darpa, sent us the following letter to sound off on his concerns for the need to move ahead with fielding guided weapons in support of ground soldiers.

    In the interest of full disclosure the letter was passed to us by way of Raytheon, NLOS contractor. But, we verified its contents with Gormon, who noted this effort has been under way since the mid-1990s.

    At issue is a performance problem with the iPAM seeker, and subsequent reluctance from the Pentagon to continue with development with the ground-based precision fires system.

    NLOS-LS: Another critical operational capability on the verge of cancellation.

    Paul Gorman (General, U.S. Army, Retired).

    Engaged, as is Secretary Gates in the longest war that the United States has ever fought,
    he needs to pay closer attention to its growing human costs, not only in lives lost, but also in the
    ever-expanding numbers of wounded warriors. Our adversaries know well that it is those
    numbers, not the size of the defense budget that will determine success or failure. Congress has
    been generous in providing funds to lessen the impact of Improvised Explosive Devices, but that
    is a measure/countermeasure contest that the U.S. is far from winning. My advice to Bob Gates –
    an old friend and CIA colleague—would be to look as well at force structure and operational
    concepts.

    Over the past months our enemies in Afghanistan have found it possible to inflict heavy
    casualties by attacking the small outposts the coalition has established in the interests of fostering
    a presence in the midst of the population, and thus neutralizing anti-government factions. The
    very success of that policy has increased the incentive for deadly assaults mounted by skilled,
    well-armed fighters who know how to use darkness to creep in close to the defenders. As was the
    case in the Pacific islands of World War II, and in Korea and Vietnam, such “hugging tactics”
    render defensive fires from artillery and mortars useless in that they fall uselessly behind the
    attackers, who rise up suddenly at short range to concentrate their assault weapons on destroying
    or suppressing key elements of the defense, such as mortars or TOW. Artillery usually supports
    from a distance, well away from the battleground, but because of Afghanistan’s mountains, its
    projectiles are typically fired at high-angle, and therefore have extensive range dispersion. When
    artillery fires are properly planned and on-call, they are more responsive and continuous, but they
    are imprecise. They evidently do not deter the attackers, and they often cause collateral damage
    and civilian casualties that gainsay the purpose if having the friendly unit there in the first place.
    Only the arrival of aircraft armed with precision weapons gives the enemy pause, and causes
    withdrawal. But on the record, even loitering aircraft such as the B-1 or REAPER arrive at least a
    half hour or more after the onslaught, by which time the enemy often achieves his intended effect.
    Our adaptation to this circumstance can not be to deploy more artillery and mortar units, for
    such conventional weapons will necessitate sending to theater skilled crews, guns, ammunition,
    trucks, and onerous road-bound logistics, will rarely be useful in stopping a well-executed assault,
    and will lead to higher casualties not only by failing to save the defenders, but also by rendering
    the force more vulnerable to IED ambush.

    Instead, the Secretary might exercise an option to substitute rockets-in-a-box for mortars
    and artillery. In the mid-‘90s I assisted DARPA’s development of containerized missiles launched
    instantaneously in response to signals on a network. Termed NETFIRES, the DARPA program
    centered on a steerable-jet rocket capable of flying to a GPS coordinate up to 40 km away, or of
    homing on an infrared image, or of hitting a laser spot. Its warhead would be a fragmentationwrapped,
    shaped-charge capable of defeating both soft and hard targets. Moreover, the system
    was to function night and day, whatever the weather. Eventually, the system was successfully
    transitioned to the Army, and incorporated into its Future Combat System as the Non-Line of
    Sight-Launch System (NLOS-LS). NLOS-LS, expected to be fielded in FY 2011, consists of three
    elements: (1) the Container Launch Unit (CLU) with 15 missiles and a radio, (2) the Precision
    Attack Missile (PAM), and (3) the controlling network, with related communications and
    management software. When Sec Def cancelled FCS, NLOS-LS was one of the systems the
    Army judged valuable and mature enough for retention and further development.

    Up until the recent past, through numerous program reviews and detailed U.S. Army
    analyses, NLOS-LS was repeatedly selected for continuation. OSD recognized that over a billion
    dollars had been invested in developing NLOS-LS. The Army believed that system could close a
    critical capability gap in mutual fire support among forward operating bases, and could do so
    without the combat support and combat service support burden entailed by conventional indirect
    fire weapon systems. NLOS-LS is platform independent and can be embedded within small units
    without extensive training. Strategically, it is adaptable to a wide range of CONOPS, and is rapidly
    deployable: a 90 missile NLOS-LS package for 6 FOBs could be deployed to Afghanistan with five
    trucks, 11 personnel, and four C-130 sorties. This potential led to accelerated development and
    aggressive testing. Haste has presented issues, and precipitated a reexamination of cost
    effectiveness.

    In a recent Limited User Test (LUT), I understand that PAM did not perform well. I am told
    that the prime contractors (Raytheon and Lockheed Martin, partnered in Netfires LLC), have
    identified the cause, an untried software enhancement just before the firings, and have remedied
    the defect(s).

    But in the meantime, costs have been questioned. In December 2009 the Defense
    Acquisition Board prompted the Army to conduct an Analysis of Alternatives (AoA) on NLOS-LS
    for the BCT. In approximately 30 days a report was delivered that was contrary to previous, more
    detailed studies that supported the program’s cost-effectiveness and relevancy. I am told that the
    AoA failed to address the serious operational concern that often aviation support isn’t responsive
    enough to our soldiers because of weather, terrain and mission priorities. The AoA suggested
    Maverick missiles, Hellfire missiles and the Joint Air to Ground missile, which is still in
    development, as suitable alternatives to the NLOS-LS PAM. However, all of these missiles are
    dependent on aviation platforms constrained by weather, terrain, command and control, and time
    to target. In fact, reports from theater suggest that the enemy capitalizes on our lack of
    responsiveness, and our inability to cope with bad weather and adverse terrain.

    In my view, the Secretary ought to intervene before the budgeters scrap NLOS-LS, and
    insure that we field that system, for it surely can prevent friendly casualties, assist the dispersal of
    our own and allied forces, and thereby extend the area within which runs the writ of the
    government of Afghanistan.

  7. #17

    Indian Army Seeks Loitering Missiles

    By VIVEK RAGHUVANSHI

    Published: 3 May 2010 17:03

    NEW DELHI - The Indian Army wants to equip its troops with missiles that can loiter over a target for 30 minutes, and it sent a global request for information (RfI) in March, Defence Minister A.K. Antony told the parliament here in a written response.

    The loitering missile would be able to send critical data on enemy installations and later self-destruct on the target.

    In the RfI, the Defence Ministry has sought details from the vendors on the missile's cruising speed, the maximum range at which it can engage a target, its loitering time, the range of its data link, its accuracy, ability to attack from the top, and if it can abort after locking onto a target and be redesignated to a new target.

    After receipt of the RfI, a formal request for proposals will be issued and the missiles are likely to be procured by the end of 2011, a Defence Ministry official said.

  8. #18

    McCain Wants Info from U.S. Army on NLOS-LS

    By KATE BRANNEN

    Published: 7 May 2010 12:19

    With the fate of the Non-Line of Sight Launch System (NLOS-LS) still undecided, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., is requesting more information from the U.S. Army on its recommendation to Pentagon acquisition chief Ashton Carter.

    "I understand that the Army has forwarded a recommendation to the undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics, for its upcoming decision on whether or not to continue the Non-Line of Sight Launch System program," McCain wrote in an April 30 letter to Army Secretary John McHugh. "As such, I request the Army provide the committee with its written recommendation to Dr. Carter, as well as any supporting materials provided to justify the recommendation."

    McCain is the top-ranking Republican member of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

    Army spokesman Jimmie Cummings said the service had not yet formally notified Carter of its recommendation for NLOS-LS.

    Sources have said that Army senior leaders have completed a review of the service's precision fires portfolio, and decided April 22 to recommend the Pentagon cancel the program.

    Carter has the final say on NLOS-LS because it is an acquisition category 1 program.

    The Army is still revising the details of its formal written recommendation, but the recommendation itself remains unchanged, sources said.

    McCain also wants documentation pertaining to the service's portfolio reviews being led by Gen. Peter Chiarelli, the Army's vice chief of staff. McCain said this information has not yet been made available to the Senate Armed Services Committee.

    "As you're aware, the committee is preparing to mark up the fiscal year 2011 National Defense Authorization Act," he wrote. "We would appreciate receiving your recommendation and analysis regarding this program prior to mark-up. Your assessment of this program will assist us in making important resourcing decisions regarding NLOS-LS and other Army and DoD programs."

    McCain asked that the requested information be provided no later than May 20.

    Originally part of the Army's Future Combat Systems program, NLOS-LS also is intended for the Navy's Littoral Combat Ship. It is being developed by Netfires, a joint venture between Raytheon and Lockheed Martin. Lockheed builds the system's container launcher unit, and Raytheon is responsible for the system's Precision Attack Missile.

  9. #19

    \McCain is the top-ranking Republican member of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
    He is also the senior Senator for Arizona home of the old Hughes Aviation missile factory where the PAM is built...

  10. #20

    Strange-looking thing this one..............

    The new wheeled self-propelled howitzer SOKO SP RR 122/100/105 mm from Yugoimport.


    Serbia Serbian Yugoimport SOKO SP RR 122 mm wheeled self-propelled howiter picture

    At SOFEX 2010, the Serbian Defence Company Yugoimport present for the first time to the public his new wheeled self-propelled howitzer, the SOKO SP RR 122/100/105 mm. The SOKO SP RR 122/100/105 mm (Self-Propelled Rapid Response) truck mounted gun howitzer family is consisting of three models, based on same truck chassis and gun mount, with three ballistic systems options:

    - 122 mm D-30 J howitzer with appropriate standard and HE-BB ammunition, reaching combat ranges of 17.3 km with HE round and 21 km with HE/BB round.

    - 100 mm tank gun with appropriate standard ammunition, reaching a maximum range of 24 km.

    - 105 mm / 52 cal. long range ballistic system, with appropriate advanced ammunition reaching a range of 30 km with HE/BB round.


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