The Israel Missile Defense Organization (IMDO) of the Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D) and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) successfully completed a series of tests of the David’s Sling Weapon System. This test series, designated David’s Sling Test-4 (DST-4), was the fourth series of tests of the David’s Sling Weapon System and the final milestone before declaring delivery of an operational system to the Israeli Air Force in 2016. The test series was conducted at a test range in southern Israel.
The tests examined capabilities and performance of the entire David’s Sling Weapon System. The series included intercepts of multiple threat representative targets by Stunner interceptor missiles in realistic, real-time engagements. During each test, the Multi-Mission Radar (MMR) detected the target after launch and transferred flight information to the Battle Management Center (BMC), which calculated the defense plan. The Stunner interceptor was successfully launched, performed all flight phases, and engaged the target as planned. Preliminary analysis indicates that test objectives were successfully achieved.
Information collected during the test series is being analyzed by program engineers and will be used for ongoing development and fielding of the David’s Sling Weapon System. This test series provides confidence in future Israeli capabilities to defend against large caliber rockets and other developing threats.
The David’s Sling Weapon System is a central part of Israel’s multi-layer defense array. The other layers of defense are: Iron Dome (operational), the Arrow-2 (operational) and Arrow-3 (under development).
The prime contractor for David’s Sling Weapon System is Rafael, with Raytheon Missile Systems as a sub-contractor. The MMR is developed by Elta, a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries. The BMC, known as the Golden Almond, is developed by Elisra, an Elbit subsidiary.
The mass production of the system’s Stunner interceptor missiles has already begun and the production of additional radars and fire control stations will begin next year
The U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM) Life Cycle Management Command (LCMC) has directed Oshkosh Defense, LLC, an Oshkosh Corporation company, to resume work on the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) production contract. The JLTV program fills a critical capability gap for the U.S. Army and Marine Corps by replacing a large portion of the legacy High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) fleet with a light vehicle that provides unprecedented protection, off-road mobility and transportability.
«We are pleased that the JLTV production contract, awarded to Oshkosh in August, is now moving forward to deliver the world’s most capable light tactical vehicle», said U.S. Army Major General (Retired) John M. Urias, executive vice president of Oshkosh Corporation and president of Oshkosh Defense. «Our JLTV is designed to safely transport Soldiers and Marines as they perform their missions ‘outside the wire’ – providing unprecedented off-road speed and mobility on future battlefields that could be virtually anywhere in the world».
The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) dismissed Lockheed Martin’s protest earlier today based on Lockheed’s notice that it intends to file a protest in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Shortly thereafter, the U.S. Army lifted the stop work order and instructed Oshkosh to resume performance of the JLTV contract. According to the JLTV production contract, Oshkosh will begin delivering vehicles within the next 10 months, reaching an expected total volume of nearly 17,000 vehicles, as well as kits and sustainment services over an eight-year period.
«The Army conducted a thorough, methodical procurement including exhaustive testing and evaluation to ensure our troops get the best vehicle», said Urias. «The Oshkosh team and our employees will immediately resume work to deliver JLTVs to our Soldiers and Marines. The JLTV program fills a critical gap in the U.S. military’s current tactical vehicle line-up», said Urias. «The Oshkosh JLTV will give our troops new levels of payload, performance and protection in a platform that was engineered to evolve as new technologies emerge and our adversaries’ tactics change».
In designing its JLTV, Oshkosh leveraged its extensive experience producing and sustaining more than 150,000 heavy, medium and protected Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles for the U.S. and its allies. The JLTV Family of Vehicles is comprised of two seat and four seat variants, as well as a companion Trailer (JLTV-T). The two-seat variant has one base vehicle platform, the Utility (JLTV-UTL). The four-seat variant has two base vehicle platforms, the General Purpose (JLTV-GP) and the Close Combat Weapons Carrier (JLTV-CCWC).
According to Agence France Presse, Lithuania said on December 11 it would buy 88 German-made armoured fighting vehicles in its biggest-ever military purchase amid concerns over neighbouring Russia. «We have come to the unequivocal opinion to choose and acquire the Boxer Infantry Fighting Vehicles (IFV)», said Lithuania’s defence chief Jonas Vytautas Zukas.
Speaking after a meeting of the State Defence Council, he said the Baltic EU and NATO nation had picked the German-made vehicles out of 12 bids. The first vehicles made by the Artec grouping of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles are expected to arrive in 2017.
Jonas Vytautas Zukas said the price would be disclosed only after the talks with Artec are over, but a government source said the deal could be worth around 400 million euros ($438 million). In its state budget for 2016 approved on Thursday, Lithuania has vowed to raise defence spending by more than a third against this year amid increased concerns over Russia’s actions in Ukraine and military activity in the Baltic area.
In September, Lithuania signed a 16-million-euro deal to buy 21 used self-propelled howitzers from Germany. The United States has meanwhile deployed some military equipment in Lithuania, including its Abrams battle tanks.
The three Baltic States and Poland have also called for a permanent NATO presence in the region to deter Russia but the allies have so far stuck to back-to-back troop rotations.
Combat Weight Maximum
77,162 lbs/35,000 kg
711 hp/530 kW
> 62 mph/100 km/h
27.33 feet/8.33 m
9.81 feet/2.99 m
> 9.65 feet/2.94 m
All around anti-tank mines and anti-personnel landmines, heavy machine gun and artillery fragments
The Fire Support Group of Yankee Company, 45 Commando Royal Marines have let rip with the next-generation light anti tank weapon. The Arbroath-based green berets missed out on the chance for live firing back in the spring because they were deployed with HMS Bulwark rescuing migrants in the Mediterranean.
Six months later and their chance came at Otterburn ranges, outside Newcastle, and a week of non-stop firepower, beginning with machine-guns and ending with some tankbusting. However, as impressive as two gun lines of machine-guns hammering away are, the party piece of Exercise Black Storm was some live missile firing – three NLAWs, one Javelin.
Javelin can knock out enemy armour at four times the distance (about 2,500 metres or 1½ miles) of the smaller NLAW (Next-generation Light Anti-tank Weapon) anti-tank missile.
Marine Danny Dugan was selected to fire the ‘Jav’ in front of a large crowd of soldiers and marines: «There was a gasp of shock when the missile left the launcher and started curving off to the left – only for a sigh of relief to hit as the missile curled back towards the target after taking a dogleg».
«There was a gasp of shock when the missile left the launcher and started curving off to the left – only for a sigh of relief to hit as the missile curled back towards the target after taking a dogleg,” said Marine Kev MacNeish. «Everyone was buzzing».
The lighter NLAWs are only effective at tanks closer than 600 metres – under 2,000 feet – and can be fired directly into the target, or can climb and plunge into the turret from above, known as ‘top attack’.
Marine MacNeish added: «All the fire support group had been looking forward to getting some valuable trigger time. This was a hoofing week and everyone left with high morale».
In response to a request from Ukraine, and as part of our ongoing efforts to bolster Ukraine’s defense and internal security operations, on November 14, 2015 the United States delivered two AN/TPQ-36 radar systems to Ukraine at a ceremony in Lviv.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko had the opportunity to review the equipment, and was briefed by U.S. military personnel on its capabilities. The radar systems delivered on November 14 will help defend Ukrainian military personnel and civilians against rocket and artillery attacks, which have historically been the most lethal threat to Ukrainian personnel and civilians.
The equipment was delivered on a rapid timeline – less than two months after President Obama delegated to the Secretary of State the authority to draw down up to $20 million in defense articles and services and up to $1.5 million in non-lethal commodities and services to provide these systems to Ukraine.
The provision of these systems brings our total security assistance committed to Ukraine in response to the crisis to more than $265 million since 2014.
AN/TPQ-36(V)10 Firefinder Weapon Locating System
The AN/TPQ-36 directs accurate counterfire to neutralize enemy positions.
ThalesRaytheonSystems’ compact, mobile, combat proven AN/TPQ-36 Firefinder radar accurately, rapidly and automatically locates medium-range enemy mortars, artillery, and rocket launchers. It can handle simultaneous fire from weapons at multiple locations, detecting and reporting their positions on the first round. The AN/TPQ-36 can detect and report the positions of up to 10 different weapons in seconds, at a maximum range of 15 miles/24 km. The system also corrects and improves delivery of friendly fire.
Compact and highly mobile, the AN/TPQ-36 supports rapid deployment of forces and close combat. It can be positioned and ready for operation in 15 minutes. It can be readied for movement in 5 minutes by a five-man crew. Because it can move quickly from one position to another, it is typically located close to the forward battle line in direct support of brigade operations. The AN/TPQ-36 comprises an antenna-transceiver trailer, a generator, and an operation control shelter that contains the paper map display and communications suite.
The prime movers for the system consists of three HMMWVs (Recon/Cargo Vehicle, Shelter Vehicle with Q-36 in tow, Generator Vehicle with spare generator in tow). The manned operation control shelter can be located as far as 164 feet/50 m away from the unmanned antenna trailer. The system is capable of being operated remotely 328 feet/100 m from the shelter.
The AN/TPQ-36 stationary antenna sweeps a rapid sequence of beams along the horizon, forming an electronic radar curtain over 90 degree area. Any target penetrating the curtain triggers an immediate verification beam. On verification, an automatic tracking sequence begins. While tracking any single target, the radar continues scanning, locating, and tracking others.
Training and Maintenance
With high system reliability and maintainability simplified by computer-controlled, built-in test equipment, ThalesRaytheonSystems’ AN/TPQ-36 provides unusually high system availability. Improved On-line fault detection and off-line fault diagnostics alert the operator to system faults, directing repair action to the unit that must be replaced. Ninety percent of all repairs required in the field can be performed by the crew, with a mean-time-to-repair of only 30 minutes. The cost effectiveness of the AN/TPQ-36 is enhanced by its 90 degree – 360 degree sector, small crew, ease of operation, and high availability.
State of the Art Radar Processor
The AN/TPQ-36 has been upgraded with a full radar compliance radar processor. The radar processor is common between the AN/TPQ-36 and AN/TPQ-37 Radars. The new processor reduces the number of circuit cards from 9 to 3. Customers benefit tremendously from the significant reduction in cost per unit and unlimited future growth potential. The open LAN based design accommodates future changes.
The Finnish Defence Forces is currently preparing the procurement of GMLRS AW and the GMLRS UNITARY munitions. The invitation to tender concerning the procurement is currently under consideration in the United States Congress.
Procurement of the new guided munitions will make the use of the rocket launch system procured in 2006 more efficient and diversify the range of munitions available for the multiple launch rocket systems. The use of guided munitions is possible due to the reform of the fire control of rocket launcher systems drawn up in 2012-15.
When exploding the GMLRS AW spreads fragments above the target. The effect of the GMLRS UNITARY on the other hand is based on its explosive and pressure impact. The range of both the munitions is approximately 70 kilometres.
The procurement decision for the munitions will be made by Finland’s Ministry of Defence following the contract negotiations. The product is in accordance with the international Convention on Cluster Munitions.
Guided MLRS Unitary Rocket
The MLRS Family of Munitions includes three rockets and four missiles with an additional six variants in development. This MFOM meets the complete Army requirement for tactical and operational support.
Guided Unitary MLRS:
A pre-planned product improvement to GMLRS;
Integrates approximately 200 pound Unitary Warhead into the GMLRS;
Enhanced anti-jam and accuracy processor;
Low cost/risk program to greatly reduce collateral damage;
The U.S. Army awarded BAE Systems a contract option worth $245.3 million to complete the Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP) of the M109A7 self-propelled howitzer and M992A3 ammunition carrier. «The success of this program is directly attributable to the partnership between the Army and BAE Systems», said Adam Zarfoss, director of Artillery and Bradley programs at BAE Systems. «We’ve worked as a team to bring this much needed enhanced combat capability to the soldier to address immediate needs while providing a platform that can support future growth as requirements evolve».
The M109A7 program is a significant upgrade over the vehicle’s predecessor, the M109A6 Paladin Self-Propelled Howitzer. It uses the existing main armament and cab structure of the M109A6, but replaces the vehicle’s chassis structure with a new design that increases survivability and allows for the integration of Bradley common drive-train and suspension components. Additionally, the system leverages technologies developed under the Crusader and Non-Line-of-Sight Cannon programs such as a 600-volt on-board power generation, distribution and management system, coupled with high-voltage gun drive and projectile ramming systems.
The state-of-the-art «digital-backbone» and power generation capability provides significant growth potential for future payloads as well as accommodating existing battlefield network requirements. The upgrades ensure commonality with the existing systems in the U.S. Army’s Armored Brigade Combat Team, including the BAE Systems-built Bradley Fighting Vehicle and Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle.
BAE Systems was awarded a one-year base contract for the M109A7 in October 2013, and the first of two option year awards to produce an additional 18 vehicle sets in October 2014. The current exercise is for the second option year to produce an additional 30 sets. One set includes an M109A7 Paladin Self Propelled Howitzer (SPH) along with its battlefield companion, the M992A3 Carrier Ammunition, Tracked. With all two options exercised, BAE Systems will deliver a total of 66 vehicle sets plus one additional SPH and associated kits, spares, and technical documentation to complete the LRIP phase. The U.S. Army has a total acquisition objective of 580 vehicle sets.
Work on the M109A7 is currently underway at Anniston Army Depot, Alabama and BAE Systems’ York, Pennsylvania, and Elgin, Oklahoma, facilities.
Raytheon Company has introduced its TOW (Tube-launched, Optically-tracked, Wireless-guided) EagleFire launcher, an evolutionary development designed to bridge the capabilities of existing launchers and eliminate obsolescence issues. Designed to fire both the wire-guided and wireless radio frequency missiles, TOW EagleFire provides increased capabilities over the TOW 2 launcher at a lower cost.
«We improved target acquisition and engagement found in the older TOW 2 launcher system», said Duane Gooden, vice president of Raytheon’s Land Warfare Systems. «TOW EagleFire is simpler to maintain and more reliable, thanks to built-in test equipment and a significant reduction in system subassemblies».
Other improvements include:
Integrated day-and-night sight with range-finding capability;
Extensive Built-in-Test capability.
TOW EagleFire’s lithium-ion power source allows for a nine-hour silent watch capability, when a vehicle’s engine is off, along with built-in AC and on-vehicle charging capability.
«Because the new system is less complex, we can provide superior performance in a reduced package», said Gooden. «By planning today for tomorrow’s upgrades, TOW EagleFire will accommodate future missile evolution».
The tube-launched, optically-tracked, wireless-guided Weapon System, with the multi-mission TOW 2A, TOW 2B Aero and TOW Bunker Buster missiles, is the premier long-range, heavy assault-precision anti-armor, anti-fortification and anti-amphibious landing weapon system used throughout the world today.
The weapon system is deployed with more than 40 international armed forces and integrated on more than 15,000 ground, vehicle and helicopter platforms. TOW is also the preferred heavy assault anti-armor weapon system for NATO, coalition, United Nations and peacekeeping operations worldwide.
The TOW 2A, TOW 2B Aero and TOW Bunker Buster missiles can be fired from all TOW launchers – including the Improved Target Acquisition Systems (ITAS), Stryker anti-tank guided missile vehicle (modified ITAS) and Bradley Fighting Vehicles (Improved Bradley Acquisition Subsystem).
With its extended range performance, the TOW Weapon System is the long-range precision, heavy anti-tank and assault weapon system of choice for the U.S. Army Stryker, Bradley Fighting Vehicle, ITAS High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle and Light Armored Vehicle-Anti-tank platforms. The TOW weapon system will be in service with the U.S. military beyond 2050.
The TOW Weapon System has transitioned to wireless guidance and is being produced for the U.S. Army, U.S. Marines and all international customers
BAE Systems on September 28 delivered the first production series Archer artillery system to the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) during a ceremony at the company’s Karlskoga facility. The Archer system is one of the world’s most advanced artillery systems with high mobility and precision. Archer provides fire support that is powerful and flexible, and features high levels of autonomous operation under protection. It is based on proven subsystems and has an extensive ammunition portfolio.
«BAE Systems and FMV have been working very closely to achieve our high-level requirements for the Archer program. This is an important milestone as we begin the delivery of all systems for our Swedish customer», said Lena Gillström, managing director for Weapon Systems, Sweden at BAE Systems, Inc. « Archer will provide the Swedish armed forces with an advanced artillery system that focuses on the safety of our soldiers».
BAE Systems’ employees and representatives from FMV, the Swedish Armed Forces, and the Ministry of Defence were in attendance as Gillström delivered the first system to Swedish Defence Minister Peter Hultqvst. «Archer is an important part of strengthening the Swedish defense», said Dan Ohlsson, Acting Director General for FMV.
BAE Systems delivered the pre-serial Archer systems to the Swedish government in 2013, which have been in use by the Swedish artillery regiment.
Archer artillery system
Archer is a self-propelled field howitzer that can operate autonomously in tandem with today’s command and control systems. The 155-mm, 52 calibre, long-range weapon features an outstanding tracking capability and an intensive rate of fire, engaging ground and sea targets, both stationary and moving, with high precision.
The projectile magazines handle all types of 155-mm artillery ammo, including advanced sensor-fused and precision-guided munitions. Depending on customer requirements, the charge magazine can be adapted for either conventional bags or modular systems. Fire capabilities include direct fire and Multiple Rounds Simultaneous Impact (MRSI).
Precision targeting is achieved using highly integrated components, such as ballistic calculation, in the gun computer system. Firing and operation of the gun computer can both be handled automatically or manually, providing ultimate flexibility.
9.84 feet/3.0 m
11.15 feet/3.4 m
Height with Remotely-Controlled Weapon Station (RCWS)
13.12 feet/4.0 m
34.12 feet/10.4 m
-1° to +70°
-85° to +85°
Rate of fire (burst)
3 rounds/20 sec
Rate of fire (intensive)
21 rounds/3.5 min
Rate of fire (continuous)
54 rounds/35 min
BONUS: Up to 21.75 miles/35 km
HEER 40: Up to 24.85 miles/40 km
EXCALIBUR: Up to 31 miles/50 km
approximately 20 secs
Out of action
approximately 20 secs
Up to 6 rounds
Day and night capability
Grenade launcher or heavy machine gun (optional)
43.5 mph/70 km/h
310.68 miles/500 km
Maximum longitudinal slope
Maximum lateral slope traverse
3.28 feet/1 m
1.31 feet/0.4 m
Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) protection
Climate control system
For harsh winter and summer conditions
BAE Systems delivers the first production series Archer artillery system to Sweden. Archer is one of the world’s most advanced artillery systems. It’s highly mobile and precise; provides powerful and flexible fire support; and features high levels of autonomous operation under protection
ThalesRaytheonSystems announced on September 30 that the country of Latvia will procure four Improved Sentinel AN/MPQ-64 F1 air defense radars. The Sentinel procurement, the first of its kind for the Latvian Armed Forces, will complement the country’s existing defense network by detecting, identifying and tracking airborne threats including: fixed and rotary wing aircraft, cruise missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles.
Sentinel is a highly mobile and versatile three-dimensional, phased-array radar system that operates in the X-band frequency range. Its capabilities are suited for a wide range of missions including air surveillance, air defense and missile systems coordination, and homeland defense, as well as infrastructure and asset protection. The radar is also the primary sensing component for alerting and cueing of targets for NASAMS (National Advanced Surface to Air Missile Systems).
«Sentinel meets the unique requirements of the Latvia Armed Forces, giving them the ability to more effectively meet today’s ever-evolving threat», said Ross Niebergall, chief executive officer, ThalesRaytheonSystems, LLC, US Operations. «The radar provides accurate, reliable situational awareness that many nations, including the United States, rely on for air defense».
AN/MPQ-64F1 Improved Sentinel
Range Extension Improvement:
Improved target detection at extended ranges – especially Cruise Missiles (CM) and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV);
Improved target detection for Rotary Wing (RW) and Fixed Wing (FW) aircraft;
Improved capability to cue targets beyond visual range.
Signal Data Processor:
10 slot VME-64x Rack with slots available for growth;
Multiple On-board computers.
X-Band, single channel;
X-Band, DDS Technology;
Single Master Oscillator upconverted to generate frequency;
X-Band, Multiple TWT;
Digital Interface to the Signal Data Processor;
Improved DC Motor and Controller.
New Operating Modes:
Full Coverage Mode – Surveillance from Horizon (terrain) to ~18 degrees, providing balanced height coverage;
Low Altitude Coverage Mode – Surveillance from Horizon to ~5 degrees, providing focused energy and fast revisit times for low altitude advanced target threats (cruise missiles, UAVs).