CONTENT PREVIEW
Air-Launched Weapons

Textron Systems finalises G-CLAW development

06 March 2017
A G-CLAW precision-guided weapon in flight following launch from the bay door of a Cessna Grand Caravan EX light utility aircraft. Source: Textron Systems

Key Points

  • Tests verify end-to-end guidance with incorporated SAL seeker
  • Roll-on/roll-off CLT battle management system enables rapid re-arming, re-configuration of delivery platform

Textron Systems Weapon & Sensor Systems has finalised development of the G-CLAW air-launched precision-guided glide weapon with a series of successful test firings at the US Army Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona, in October 2016.

A guidance-enhanced variant of Textron Systems' Clean Area Weapon (CLAW) blast-fragmented unitary area munition, G-CLAW, is a 50 lb (22.7 kg) air-to-surface munition equipped with a 20 lb (9.07 kg) shaped charge warhead with fragmentation sleeve (4,300 x 1 gram steel cube fragments). A tri-mode fuze (height-of-burst, impact, and delay) delivers optimised effects against a wide target set including personnel, vehicles (including light armour), watercraft, and light structures.

Originally furnished with a global positioning system (GPS)-aided inertial navigation system (INS), Textron Systems has evolved the G-CLAW with integration of a full a precision guidance package that features an articulated tail control actuation system and GPS/INS with semi-active laser (SAL) terminal homing.

A modular design approach to the munition allows for the incorporation of emerging technologies in guidance, seeker types, and warhead effects, enabling G-CLAW to be adapted to mission requirements with minimum development cost, and to be integrated on multiple delivery platforms.

A G-CLAW precision-guided weapon shown in triple CLT assembly mounted in the bay door of a Cessna Grand Caravan EX light utility aircraft. In the CLT application, the G-CLAW is ejected backwards from the tube before righting itself and gliding to the target. (Textron Systems)A G-CLAW precision-guided weapon shown in triple CLT assembly mounted in the bay door of a Cessna Grand Caravan EX light utility aircraft. In the CLT application, the G-CLAW is ejected backwards from the tube before righting itself and gliding to the target. (Textron Systems)

The G-CLAW is designed to be dispensed from the Common Launch Tube (CLT) system, notably from the bay door of an aircraft. Adopted by US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) for a variety of platforms, the CLT allows munitions to be ejected into the airflow from within the aircraft or from a weapons bay. In CLT application, the G-CLAW is ejected backwards from the tube before righting itself and gliding to the target.

For launch from the bay door of an aircraft, Textron Systems has leveraged a self-contained CLT design - which can be configured in stacks of three, six, or nine tubes - utilising a roll-on/roll-off battle management system for ease of integration with the aircraft.

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