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Northrop Grumman hits artillery kit production milestone

Northrop Grumman hits artillery kit production milestone

The prime has reported the supply of over 100,000 artillery guidance kits for the US Army.

The prime has reported the supply of over 100,000 artillery guidance kits for the US Army.

Northrop Grumman has confirmed it has surpassed the production and delivery of over 100,000 Precision Guidance Kits (PGK) for 155mm artillery projectiles as part of a US Army program.

PGK is expected to replace standard fusing for conventional projectiles currently in service, upgrading them into GPS-guided, precision weapons.

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“PGK’s precision provides a critical capability to artillery units, enabling forces to rapidly achieve mission success by reducing the number of rounds required to defeat targets,” Dave Fine, vice president for armament systems, Northrop Grumman, said.

“Throughout our 100,000 deliveries, we’ve maintained superior performance, surpassing the Army’s objectives for both accuracy and reliability.”  

Following stakeholder feedback, Northrop Grumman recently integrated a built-in, selectable, safety feature, designed to prevent detonation if the PGK predicts the projectile will exceed the selected mission distance while in flight.

According to the company, it is also set to complete the necessary qualification events to implement GPS M-Code, which would allow PGK to thwart existing and emerging threats to GPS functionality, including jamming attacks.

PGK is tipped be one of the largest production programs within the US Department of Defense.

Northrop Grumman has committed to further developing PGK technology to ensure it meets Army’s evolving requirements.

Advancements are expected to include creating PGK compatibility for the Army’s latest developments in extended range cannon artillery systems and projectiles, as well as developing the capability to operate in GPS-degraded conditions. 

The announcement of this latest production and delivery milestone comes just days after Northrop Grumman and Raytheon Missiles & Defense confirmed their selection to develop the Hypersonic Attack Cruise Missile (HACM) for the US Air Force (USAF).

The project forms part of a collaboration with the Southern Cross Integrated Flight Research Experiment (SCIFiRE) — a joint initiative between the United States and Australia.

As part of the project, the primes have been tasked with delivering “operationally ready” HACM missiles, billed as an air-breathing, scramjet-powered munition. 

Scramjet engines are designed to leverage high vehicle speed to “forcibly compress” incoming air before combustion.

This is tipped to enable sustained flight at hypersonic speeds of Mach 5 or greater, potentially evading defensive systems. 

[Related: Northrop Grumman, Raytheon tapped to develop hypersonic cruise missile ]

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