Weapons news

US Army conducts ‘max range' PrSM test fire

By Ashley Roque 14 October 2021
The US Army conducted a ‘max-range shot' of a Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) prototype on 13 October at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, but neither the service nor Lockheed Martin have disclosed just how far the missile flew.  “Lockheed Mar...

S-500 enters service in Moscow region

By Samuel Cranny-Evans & Mark Cazalet 14 October 2021
The first S-500 air defence system has entered service in the Moscow region. (Russian MoD)  The first S-500 55R6M Prometey (Prometheus) strategic air-defence system has entered service with a unit in the Moscow region, the TASS news agency reported on 13 October, citing a source close to the Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD).  The first regimental set is to be followed by a second in the first half of 2022, the source added. No official announcement has been made by the MoD, but Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov told the RIA Novosti news age...

New SHORAD systems seen in Iranian exercise

By Jeremy Binnie 14 October 2021
Two Majid SHORAD systems featured in the latest ‘Defenders of the Velayt Skies' exercise. (Tasnim News Agency)  New short-range air-defence (SHORAD) systems featured in Exercise ‘Defenders of the Velayet Skies 1400' , which was held by Iranian air-defence forces on 12–13 October, reflecting a growing emphasis on countering low-altitude threats.  Brigadier General Amir Qader Rahimzadeh, commander of the regular military's (Artesh's) air-defence force, announced that both the Majid and Dezful systems had been successfully fired during the exerc...

AUSA 2021: US aims to ramp up hypersonic weapon industrial base, cut unit costs

By Daniel Wasserbly 14 October 2021
A C-HGB launches from Pacific Missile Range Facility during a Defense Department flight experiment in March 2020. (US Navy/Oscar Sosa)  US contractors are working to productionise hypersonic-speed strike weapons, and rapidly shift them from costly hand-built prototypes into usable equipments that the Pentagon is willing to buy.  Lockheed Martin is a prime contractor for the Navy-Army All Up Round + Canister (AUR+C) for the army's Long-Range Hypersonic Weapon (LRHW) integration, and for the US Navy's Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS) hypersonic...

Peruvian Navy successfully test-fires Exocet Block 3 missiles for the first time

By Cesar Cruz Tantalean 14 October 2021
Peruvian Navy frigate FM-57 BAP   Bolognesi   recently conducted first test-fire of an Exocet MM40 Block 3 missile.  (Peruvian Navy)  The Peruvian Navy (Marina de Guerra del Peru: MGP) recently conducted its first live-fire exercises with its surface-to-surface MBDA Exocet MM40 Block 3 and air-to-surface MBDA Exocet AM-39 missiles, navy officials said.  The successful live-fire test of the Exocet MM40 Block 3 missile firing – the first since this weapon was introduced in the service five years ago – was conducted...

Seoul’s ADEX escapes the worst of Covid-19 cancellations

By Gareth Jennings 13 October 2021
As the Seoul International Aerospace and Defence Exhibition 2021 is staged at Seoul Airport on the outskirts of the South Korean capital from 19 to 21 October, Gareth Jennings explores the expected developments at the show…  ADEX, as the event is popularly known, is rapidly becoming one of Asia-Pacific's most influential and prestigious aviation, aerospace and defence events, along with Aero India, Avalon in Australia, the Singapore Air Show, and the China Air Show in Zhuhai in China.  For organisers, the biennial show has been fortunate to esc...

AUSA 2021: US Army unit receives hypersonic weapon launchers, set to begin training

By Daniel Wasserbly 13 October 2021
The delivery of the first prototype hypersonic hardware to soldiers of the 5th Battalion, 3rd Field Artillery Regiment, 17th Field Artillery Brigade is completed on October 7, 2021, with a ceremony at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington state. (US Army photo / Spc Karleshia Gater)  A US Army unit has officially received its first Long-Range Hypersonic Weapon (LRHW) launchers and is scheduled to begin ‘new equipment training' on 18 October, according to Lieutenant General Neil Thurgood, the army's director for hypersonics, directed energy, sp...

Partner 2021: Serbia integrates Russian unmanned weapon stations on Lazar III A1 ACVs

By Dmitry Fediushko 13 October 2021
The Lazar III A1 ACV armed with the Russian-made 32V01 unmanned combat module. (Dmitry Fediushko)  Serbia's Yugoimport has integrated Russian-designed 32V01 and AU-220M remotely operated weapon stations (ROWS) on to its new Lazar III A1 family of armoured combat vehicles (ACVs). The modified platforms were unveiled at the Partner 2021 international defence show in Belgrade, Serbia, between 11 and 14 October.  The Lazar III A1 with the 32V01 ROWS carries a modification of the module with a Shipunov 2A42 30 mm automatic cannon, a Kalashnikov P...

US Air Force drops new ‘bunker buster' bomb for first time

By Gareth Jennings 13 October 2021
The new GBU-72 bunker buster bomb being dropped from an F-15E Strike Eagle during a series of tests now announced by the US Air Force. (US Air Force)  The US Air Force (USAF) has performed the first test drops of its new Boeing Guided Bomb Unit‐ (GBU)-72 Advanced 5K (A5K) Penetrator, releasing the ‘bunker buster' bomb from a Boeing F-15E Strike Eagle.  The service announced on 12 October that it had dropped the 5,000 lb weapon (the 5K in its moniker) on several occasions during a series of tests from late July through to early October.  “That...

Update: Czech Republic, Israel sign SPYDER air defence agreement

By Yaakov Lappin 12 October 2021
Israel and the Czech Republic signed a government-to-government agreement covering the delivery of four Rafael SPYDER air-defence systems on 5 October.  The agreement was signed in Prague by Czech Deputy Minister for Armaments and Acquisitions Lubo...

Philippine Navy receives Mistral 3 SAMs for new frigates

By Gabriel Dominguez 12 October 2021
BRP   Antonio Luna  , the PN's second Jose Rizal-class guided-missile frigate, during its commissioning ceremony on 19 March at South Harbor in Manila. Philippine media reported on 11 October that the Mistral 3 SAMs meant to arm the two frigates have been delivered to the PN.  (Philippine Navy)  Philippine media reported on 11 October that the Philippine Navy (PN) has received an undisclosed number of Mistral 3 short-range surface-to-air-missiles (SAMs) from MBDA to arm its two recently acquired Jose Rizal-class g...

BAE Systems demos APKWS II in CUAS role

By Robin Hughes 12 October 2021
Computer-generated image of an APKWS II 70mm/2.75 inch laser-guided rocket in a surface-launched CUAS role. (BAE Systems)  BAE Systems has demonstrated its AGR-20A Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System II (APKWS II) 70mm/2.75 inch laser-guided rocket system in a surface-to-air counter-unmanned aircraft system (CUAS) role.  In a company-funded event conducted at the US Army's Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona in June, APKWS II rockets fired from a remote weapon station (RWS)-mounted four-cell rocket launcher defeated undisclosed Class 2 UAS syst...

AUSA 2021: US Army's ‘Scarlet Dragon' project aims to use AI, satellites for targeting

By Daniel Wasserbly 12 October 2021
The US Army is running a series of training and experimentation events for using artificial intelligence (AI) to identify targets, in an effort to drastically reduce so-called sensor-to-shooter times.  The ‘Scarlet Dragon' series is designed to pro...

AUSA 2021: Pentagon eyes new ‘rapid fielding' experimentation series for 2023

By Daniel Wasserbly 12 October 2021
The US Department of Defense (DoD) is plotting to begin a series of technology experiments in fiscal year 2023 (FY 2023) to consider a variety of rapid fielding projects, and is seeking FY 2022 funding to get the effort started, according to the Pe...

AUSA 2021: Japan seeking more military co-development work with US DoD

By Daniel Wasserbly 12 October 2021
An SM-3 Block IA missile launches from JS   Kirishima  .  (US Navy)  The Japanese Ministry of Defense (MoD) has asked the US Department of Defense (DoD) to consider areas for new co-development work, ranging from acquisition programmes to science and technology (S&T) projects, the Pentagon's chief technology officer said on 12 October.  “They're interested in hypersonics, they're interested in quantum; and out of the wide spectrum of their interests we agreed to have a follow-up meeting to try to flesh out, out of...

AUSA 2021: Army prepares for next phase of RCV prototype testing

By Ashley Roque 11 October 2021
An RCV-M fires a round at a target during the vehicle's live-fire testing at Fort Dix, New Jersey, on 30 June. (US Army )  US Army officials will conclude shakedown testing with eight robotic combat vehicle (RCV) prototypes in the late-October timeframe, and will then transfer the robots to Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland for an additional series of tests to ensure that they are safe for soldiers to operate.    Director of the Next Generation Combat Vehicle Cross-Functional Team Major General Ross Coffman, and Michael Cadieux, the di...

USAF F-35As complete design certification for B61-12 nuclear weapons

By Robin Hughes 11 October 2021
An F-35A Lighting II carrying a B61-12 Joint Test Assembly sits on the flight line at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, on 21 September. Two F-35A Lightning II aircraft released B61-12 Joint Test Assemblies during the first Full-Weapon System Demonstration, completing the final flight test exercise of the nuclear design certification process. (US Air Force)  The US Air Force (USAF) has completed the nuclear design certification process for use of the B61-12 air-launched tactical gravity nuclear bomb with the F-35A Lightning II conventional take...

AUSA 2021: Army pulled Strategic Long-Range Cannon funds, anticipates decision on path forward later this year

By Ashley Roque 11 October 2021
Senior US Army leaders are expected to review Strategic Long-Range Cannon (SLRC) feasibility study findings later this year and decide how they want to proceed with weapon development. However, they have already pulled development funding away from...

US Army evaluates DroneGun MKIII C-UAV system

By Gerrard Cowan 11 October 2021
DroneShield's DroneGun MKIII handheld C-UAV system was tested by the US Army in September. (DroneShield)    DroneShield's DroneGun MKIII handheld counter-unmanned aerial vehicle (C-UAV) system has undergone an evaluation at the US Army's Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona to gather feedback that will be used to improve the technology in the coming months, the company told   Janes  .   DroneGun MKIII is a 2 kg pistol that can neutralise individual platforms or swarms of drones in various domains using a radio frequency (RF) dis...

Czech Republic, Israel sign SPYDER air defence agreement

By Yaakov Lappin 08 October 2021
Israel and the Czech Republic signed a government-to-government agreement covering the delivery of four Rafael SPYDER air defence systems on 5 October.  The agreement was signed in Prague by Czech Deputy Minister for Armaments and Acquisitions Lubo...
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