This is intended for people interested in the subject of military guns and their ammunition, with emphasis on automatic weapons.
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The ground based APWKS continues to evolve.
1. BAE has figured out a way to pair the 'Fletcher' 4 shot launcher developed by Arnold Defense with a pretty sophisticated RWS with laser designator and likely other features:
BAE Systems' ground-launched APKWS® laser-guided rocket provides precision strike capabilities on the move. The hardware is compatible with existing turret r...
2. BAE has developed a Counter Drone Proximity fused version of APKWS that also allows point detonation against ground targets. This may also allow ground to ground airburst options against infantry. The new fuse works with regular warheads and rockets.
The utility as a CUAS is entirely dependent on the RWS being able to lock onto and track the incoming drone in order for the laser to designate the target. So not nearly as ideal as a real 'fire and forget' AA missile, but it offers a low cost and versatile 'dual use' feature to APKWS allowing to be used for both Ground to Ground as well as offering some limited AA effect.
3. BAE has managed to increase range 'up to 30%' by changing how the rocket flys, which also allows for higher angles of attack. All with existing rocket motors. How much range this adds for G2G is unknown, but more range is more range.
4. Arnold defense has created a 3x shot launcher that is specifically designed to work with existing Hellfire missile mounting rails. So anything that can mount a Hellfire can now mount a 3x shot APKWS in its place.
I wonder why ground launched APKWS doesn't vent gasses upwards. I mean, backslash is serious and venting upwards would reduce danger to the troops
Perhaps the off-axis force would push the launcher out of alignment.
or the redirect could choke the exhaust and generate damaging pressure in the tube?
#4 might be a good fit for smaller UAVs. Hellfire missile on one side, Arnold launcher on the other.
#4 might be a good fit for smaller UAVs. Hellfire missile on one side, Arnold launcher on the other
Absolutely. I think it would be nice on those little hellicopters like Firescout.
And honestly it would be good for larger UAV's like the Reaper as well. Even though they are big drones, their capacity isn't that hight. Having Tridents would let really up their precision missile loadout for performing hits / fire support, without having to do any real modification beyond bolting on a trident instead of hellfire.
4x Hellfires + 2x 500lb = 6 shots total
2x Hellfires + 2x Tridents + 2x 500lb = 10x shots total
4x Tridents + 2x 500lb = 14x shots total
In terms of Ground Launched, Arnold is also still developing their 23x MLHS, which is a sort of 'Micro MLRS' launcher.
This would be especially promising for a small UGV to serve as a compact, mobile fire support vehicle for infantry.
Thales and FN seem to try to be getting in on similar concepts:
And Thales and Rheinmetall are working on what looks a lot like the MLHS UGV 'micro MLRS' vehicle:
This is a very small vehicle yet would offer a pretty big punch; the vehicle looks small enough to fit inside a helicopter: