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Naval Weapons

DSEI 2019: BAE Systems showcases Kingfisher naval munition concept

12 September 2019
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BAE Systems unveiled its Kingfisher concept round for sub-surface warfare at the 2019 Defence and Security Equipment International exhibition (DSEI 2019) in London. The Kingfisher is still at an early conceptual phase and is planned to be added to BAE Systems' naval weapons portfolio as a lighter and more cost-effective option for surface ships engaging sub-surface targets compared with torpedoes. The round is nominally intended for a naval five-inch gun.

The conceptual model round displayed at DSEI 2019 consists of a hollow container-type shell housing a fuze, expulsion charge, and a single submunition that takes up most of the space inside the shell.

A cutaway model showing the Kingfisher round's internal components, including fuze, expulsion charge, and submunition. (IHSMarkit/Mark Cazalet)A cutaway model showing the Kingfisher round's internal components, including fuze, expulsion charge, and submunition. (IHSMarkit/Mark Cazalet)

Details may change, but company representatives told Jane's the likely method of operation would be to fire the shell, and once it is above the target the expulsion charge pushes out the submunition, which then deploys folding fins to control the angle of entry into the water. The submunition then enters the water and begins to sink. A depth fuze, housed in the rear of the submunition, then activates the submunition's charge, which consists of approximately 3 kg of high explosive, when it has reached the pre-set depth.

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