BAE Systems Land UK is investing around £10 million in its ammunition production capability with the decision to build a new production line for 12.7mm ammunition at the Radway Green small arms ammunition facility, adding up to 10 million rounds a year.
The company is working with the University of Sheffield’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre to design the new production line, which will use the latest manufacturing technology to maximise efficiency and quality.
The British Army has bought significant quantities of .50 M2 machine guns, many for protected weapon stations (PWS) or remote weapon stations (RWS) installed on British Army and Royal Marines platforms. The Norwegian Kongsberg RWS is becoming the UK’s standard RWS and is usually armed with a stabilised .50 M2 machine gun. While referred to as a 12.7mm round, it is more correctly called the .50 cal round, with the gun entering service back in 1933.
BAE Systems Land UK has already established new production lines for 5.56mm and 7.62mm ammunition at Radway Green and has won significant export orders for both calibres. Total investment in Radway Green is about £83 million and the facility can produce one million rounds of 5.56mm or 7.62mm ammunition a day.