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09 Aug 13. AAI receives contract to continue LSAT development for US military. Textron Systems subsidiary, AAI has secured a contract to continue development of both its caseless and cased-telescoped lightweight small arms technologies (LSAT) for the US military. Awarded through the US Department of Defense Ordnance Technology Consortium, the
$2.05m contract covers maturation of LSAT 5.56mm cased telescoped ammunition and light machine gun (LMG), prototype 5.56mm caseless ammunition and cased-telescoped ammunition. The company will specifically refine LSAT 5.56mm ammunition for a US Army live fire experiment, enhance propellant and ignition formulations of prototype 5.56mm caseless ammunition, in addition to extending cased-telescoped ammunition technologies to a 7.62mm cartridge. The initiative is jointly pursued by the army’s Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) and the Office of Naval Research (ONR). The upgraded LSAT 5.56mm system is scheduled to be evaluated during the army’s dismounted non-networked experiment (DNNE), which will be held at the Maneuver Battle Lab at Fort Benning in Georgia, US, this month. According to the company, the 7.62mm cased-telescoped cartridge will feature mature lightweight ammunition technologies that have successfully been demonstrated in the 5.56mm LSAT cartridge. Capable of offering up to a 50% reduction in weight compared to the US military’s existing M249 machine gun and M855 brass cased ammunition, the company’s prototype cased telescoped LMG has already been demonstrated at Technology Readiness Level 7. Fitted with a quick-change 12in barrel and a folding buttstock, a compact LSAT LMG variant developed for close quarters applications was also evaluated by the Army Special Operations Command in 2012. Work under the contract is scheduled to be carried out across a one-year period by the AAI-led team, comprising Alliant Techsystems (ATK), Veritay Technology and St. Marks Powder, a General Dynamics (GD) company. (Source: army-technology.com)

06 Aug 13. Serbia’s new extended-range and course-corrected rocket uses a nose-mounted correction module equipped with an inertial unit and sideways-firing thrusters. Details of a 128mm course-corrected artillery rocket were released by the Military-technical Institute VTI (Voyno-Tehnicski Institut) of the Serbian Ministry of Defence (MoD) during the recent Partner 2013 defence exhibition in Belgrade. The rocket is based on the earlier 128mm M77 Oganj, and will offer extended range as well as improved accuracy. This new design is expected to result in production of 128mm rockets being restarted to arm the Oganj and LRSVM Morava multiple rocket launch (MRL) systems, with all manufacturing being carried out in Serbia. The basic 128mm M77 Oganj unguided rocket is 2,600mm long, weighs 67kg at launch, and has a maximum range of 20.6km. The use of aerodynamic brakes allows rockets to be fired on four different trajectories from the same launcher elevation angle. The warhead weighs 19.5kg (including 3.8kg of explosive filling), and is fitted with a mechanical fuze with instantaneous or delayed action. To improve its stability, the rocket rotates 15 times per second during flight. Circular error probable (CEP) is less than 0.7 % of range. The main changes introduced by the new design include a new rocket motor based on a composite propellant and new correction module intended to eliminate both longitudinal and crosswise dispersion. According to Serbian company CITI, these circuit boards are part of the first developmental version of the correction module electronics for the extended-range 128 mm rocket. The new extended-range rocket will be 2,800mm long, weigh 70kg at launch, and have a maximum range of 30 km. The designers are not trying to develop a high-accuracy precise weapon. While the use of GPS-based guidance can create a guided rocket or projectile of high accuracy (the Raytheon Excalibur guided artillery projectile was de

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