Multipurpose Individual Munition (MPIM)
Predator Short Range Assault Weapon (SRAW)
The Predator Short Range Assault Weapon [SRAW] is a one man portable, fire-and-forget system designed to defeat the next generation of advanced armor threats. Predator system characteristics consist of the following, weight of 20 pounds or less, length less than 40 inches, effective range of between 17 and 600 meters, inertial guidance capable of addressing moving, as well as stationary targets and soft launch fire-from-enclosure capability. The Predator will be built to a performance specification.
The Predator SRAW is capable of defeating all current and future main battle tanks, including those incorporating advanced armor protection, supplemental armor kits, and Explosive Reactive Armor (ERA). The Predator features an advanced guidance- and-control system, a soft-launch capability, and a lethal, explosively-formed penetrator warhead. Once launched, the missile flies in a top-attack (i.e., fly over, shoot down) profile and uses optical and magnetic sensors to detect the target and detonate the warhead. Predator can effectively engage moving targets from 17 to 200 meters and stationary targets from 17 to 600 meters.
The munition consists of a disposable launcher/carry case equipped with a 2.5X telescopic sight compatible with current and planned night-vision devices. The shoulder-launched missile consists of a two-stage, soft-launch propulsion system with inertial guidance and an explosively formed penetrator with follow-through grenade warhead. The missile is capable of firing quickly from its carrying configuration, and it can be fired safely from enclosures.
With a length of 35 inches, a weight of 20 pounds and a range of 500 meters (depending on target size), it is a single-man user munition that is capable of incapacitating personnel in bunkers and reinforced buildings and defeating modern light armor.
The SRAW missile itself consists of three modular components: (1) a Flight Module, (2) a Target Detection Device (TDD), and (3) a Warhead. The Flight Module consists of several components, the heart of which is the Guidance and Control Unit (GCU). The GCU controls the missile flight profile and provides flight path correction commands to the missile. The missile intercept solution is designed to over-fly the target. The TDD is a dual mode device that combines a laser ranger and magnetic detector. The TDD commands detonation of the warhead when both laser ranger and magnetic detector have confirmed target over flight.
The Predator (SRAW) will provide the infantry battalion with the organic capability to engage and destroy ERA-equipped Main Battle Tanks at ranges between 17 and 600 meters. Its soft-launch (fire from enclosures) and fire-and-forget features will significantly enhance both gunner survivability and the ability of the battalion to conduct anti-armor operations in urban terrain. It will provide greater range and lethality than both the AT-4 and SMAW (HEAA).
Multipurpose Individual Munition
The Multipurpose Individual Munition / Short Range Assault Weapon (MPIM/SRAW) is the future answer for effectively defeating personnel in three different environments: behind masonry/brick walls, within earth and timber bunkers and in light armored vehicles. Ideally suited for MOUT environments, MPIM/SRAW will replace the LAW, AT-4, and other light shoulder fired weapons.
The Multipurpose Individual Munition (MPIM) will enable the soldier to engage and defeat a variety of targets. The system will allow the individual soldier both to destroy light armor and incapacitate personnel within or behind structural barriers or field fortifications. It will be used by soldiers in all geographical areas under any climatic and battlefield conditions. Combat arms, as well as combat support and combat service support units, will use this weapon to accomplish their missions. The weapon will be employed as a round of ammunition and will not require any maintenance other than inspection and cleaning. The MPIM is a multipurpose weapon system that is projected to supplement and eventually replace the Launcher and Cartridge, 84-MM, M136 (AT4), HEAT and the M72A2/A3 Light Antitank Weapon (LAW).
In the statement of managers accompanying the conference report on the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1994 (Public Law 103-160) (H. Rept. 103-357), the conferees agreed that the Army should pursue a limited, interim program for procurement of a bunker-defeat munition (BDM). The conferees also agreed that the Marine Corps' short-range anti-armor weapon (SRAW) and the Army's BDM were too similar to justify maintaining separate programs for the long-term. The conferees believed that a long-term solution to the problem should be sought which drew from the SRAW missile and from warhead technology developed in the Army's multi-purpose individual munition (MPIM) program.
As of 1996, two technologies were under consideration: a shoulder-launched munition and two rifle-launched munitions.
The Army decided on a program for a MPIM system that will capitalize on the SRAW's propulsion technology and the MPIM's warhead technology. The SRAW missile, with the MPIM warhead, has the potential to satisfy the Army and Marine Corps requirements to defeat multiple targets, while the original SRAW warhead provides an anti-armor capability.
The MPIM/ SRAW munition consists of a disposable launcher/ carry case equipped with a 2.5X telescopic sight compatible with current and future night vision devices. The shoulder-launched missile consists of a two- stage, soft- launch propulsion system with inertial guidance and explosively- formed penetrator with follow- through grenade warhead. The missile is capable of firing quickly from its carrying configuration and is safely fired from enclosures. The 35-inch, 20-pound disposable weapon has a range out to 500 meters. Internal rate sensors allow Soldiers to aim directly at a moving target and a soft launch capability allows Soldiers to fire from enclosures. The warhead is extremely lethal due to the combination of an explosively formed penetrator with a follow through fragmentation grenade.
The Predator SRAW was conceived by the Marine Corps in 1987 as a low-cost, short-range anti-armor missile with a top attack warhead. Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) began in 1994. EMD was intended to produce 125 missile systems to support Technical Evaluation and 103 missiles to support OT&E.
In August 1996, MCOTEA and the MARCORSYSCOM PM collectively decided to pursue the development of the SRAW M&S System to provide supplemental DT&E and OT&E data that could help resolve Probability of Hit (Ph), Probability of Kill (Pk), and address software quality concerns.
Problems arose because the decision was made after program start to add M&S [Modeling & Simulation] for the Predator. Inadequate scoping of the effort caused greater than 100% cost growth plus withdrawal of support organizations during system under test (SUT) M&S development. Other discrepancies in system data available for the modeling resulted in poor correlation between flight test data and simulation results. However, while MCOTEA gained invaluable test simulation experience, and DoD gained a new magnetic environment measurement capability, the Predator Missile program manager gained little confidence through this M&S effort.
Loral Aeronutronic, Rancho Santa Margarita, California, was awarded on December 21, 1994, a $3,700,000 increment as part of a $7,850,000 cost plus incentive fee contract for a Multi-Purpose Individual Munition/Short Range Antiarmor Weapon (MPIM/SRAW) Technology Demonstration. Work was performed at Rancho Santa Margarita, California, and was completed by mid-1995. The prime contractor is Lockheed Martin Electronics and Missiles (Orlando, FL).
The program completed Phase I (Risk Reduction Phase) in March 1998. All Phase I requirements were met on schedule and within budget. Accuracy solution was verified by two successful full missile shots at 500m wall and 200m bunker. MPIM/SRAW executed Phase II (System Qualification) option in May 1998. USMC Predator qualification testing began in August 1998.
During missile development the MPIM/ SRAW program has had 100 percent flight test success. Other accomplishments include early user demonstration, qualification of the modified safe and arm device and successful demonstration of grenade insertion in both triple brick and reinforced concrete walls using a prototype design.
Upon completion of the exiting Engineering, Manufacturing, and Development contract, production of the Predator (SRAW) Weapon System was continued on a sole source basis with Lockheed Martin Electronics & Missiles Division. The quantity consists of: Base Year 442 units, Option Year 1-647 units, Option Year 2-781 units, Option Year 3-1909 units, and Option Year 4-2126 units. The production of the supplies listed requires a substantial initial investment and/or an extended period of preparation for manufacture by any source other than the exiting EMD contractor. Maintaining production with the current EMD contractor will eliminate substantial duplication of cost due to existing proofed out production line and elimination of extensive first article testing, production readiness review, physical configuration testing, production readiness review, physical configuration audits and engineering support.
In January 2002, a one-year low-rate initial production (LRIP) contract for 330 weapons was awarded. Weapon first article testing will be conducted March-May 2003. Fielding will commence in December 2003 following the delivery of Lots 1 and 2 in August and December 2003. A second LRIP contract for 400 weapons was awarded in December 2002. Lots 1 and 2 deliveries from the second LRIP contact are planned for April and August 2003.
First unit was equipped in FY 2002.
Short-Range Assault Weapon-Multiple Purpose Variant (SRAW-MPV)
In May 2005, responding to an urgent request from warfighters, Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] expanded the capabilities of its Predator anti-tank weapon and delivered 400 rounds to the U.S. Marine Corps. The US Marine Corps requested Lockheed Martin to modify the shoulder-fired, short-range Predator anti-tank weapon into a direct-attack urban assault weapon. Renamed the Short-Range Assault Weapon-Multiple Purpose Variant (SRAW-MPV), the new urban assault missile has a multiple-purpose blast warhead, enabling it to defeat a variety of targets such as buildings and bunkers, as well as light-armored vehicles.
The conversion of Predator from a top-down anti-armor weapon to a direct-fire urban assault weapon was prompted by the need for fire-from-enclosure assault weapons, which has become paramount to support current actions. Other current short-range assault weapon systems cannot meet the requirement.
This variant of the Predator weapon system is uniquely suited to the urban warfare environment that is prevalent in military operations today. The SRAW-MPV is the only short-range soft-launch assault weapon in the world. It can be safely fired from buildings with single hearing protection, which protects the gunner by minimizing exposure to enemy counter-fire. In addition, its point-and-shoot, fire-and-forget inertial guidance system minimizes gunner operations and corrects for in-flight disturbances such as cross-wind.
The new weapon passed an acceptance test at the Naval Air Warfare Center (NAWC), China Lake, CA, in November 2004, as well as successful man firings in December 2004 demonstrating it can be fired safely even with minimal prior training. The flight tests included two rounds that successfully breached a triple-brick target, leaving a gap wide enough for troop entry, and another round that disabled an armored personnel carrier. All shots were at a range of 200 meters.
Lockheed Martin previously delivered 344 Predator rounds under a Low-Rate Initial Production-I contract. Both the Predator and SRAW-MPV weapons are fully man-rated (all qualification, safety certification and gunner hazard tests are complete, any limitations on the use of the weapon are quantified and documented, and the weapon is tested as safe to fire within the defined limitations) - ready to deploy.
The US Army was evaluating options for upgrading its urban assault weapon capabilities for fire from enclosure and improved performance over the next few years, and SRAW-MPV, in its current configuration, will meet most of these upgrade requirements. U.S. allies also have urban warfare requirements that SRAW-MPV will meet.
|Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list|