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BAE Systems APKWS Kits Testing Yields Target Accuracy; Sam Kirsh Quoted

2 mins read

BAE Systems has completed the testing of its APKWS laser-guidance kits with General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems’ High-Explosive Anti-Tank Anti-Personnel Anti-Material warheads.

In a recent demonstration, the use of APKWS guidance kits enabled three rockets to hit three different test targets directly, BAE Systems announced from Hudson, New Hampshire earlier this month.

“We’re giving our customers more in-mission options for precision strikes against tougher targets. APKWS guidance kits with HEAT/APAM warheads provide a low-cost, lightweight, easy-to-deploy strike capability against armored and unarmored targets,” said BAE Systems APKWS Program Manager Sam Kirsh.

The APKWS guidance kits are used to convert unguided rockets into smart munitions for precision strikes on soft targets, equipment and armored targets and their installation and activation require minimal training.

During the assessment, BAE Systems launched rockets with HEAT/APAM warheads equipped with these guidance kits against substantial targets including a steel plate and an armored military vehicle. The rockets destroyed each target at range with direct hits in every challenge.

APKWS guidance kits also work with 70 millimeter Hydra rocket components including motors, warheads, fuses, launchers and laser target designators. They are versatile across launch platforms for fighter jets, combat helicopters, ground vehicles and remote weapon stations.

Over 100 successful shots have been fired through the use of APKWS guidance kits in M151 high explosive warheads, which demonstrates the strong accuracy of the kits.

This development coincides with an ongoing Air Force Research Labs contract which tasks BAE Systems’ FAST Labs with developing Environmentally Adaptive Geospatial Learning and Exploitation, a suite of machine learning and fusion algorithms. The award falls under the Multi-Sensor Exploitation for Tactical Autonomy program.

The organization recently won an additional AFRL award to further develop the Fight Tonight program through the provision of autonomy-based planner tools to improve the evaluation and selection of plan options.