Laser-guided 2.75-inch rocket completes live fire testing by Marine helicopter aviatorsNews
March 21, 2012
NASHUA, N.H. U.S. Marine Corps pilots fired rounds against stationary and moving targets as part of Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) program?s Initial Operational Test and Evaluation phase. APKWS, developed by BAE Systems, uses a semi-active laser-guided 2.75-inch rocket.
During the tests, which simulated potential battlefield scenarios, the pilots fired the laser-guided rockets from multiple distances from Marine AH-1W and UH-1Y helicopters.
The APKWS, which should be deployed in Afghanistan late this month, takes a standard 2.75-inch unguided rocket and turns it into a laser-guided missile ideal for defeating soft and lightly armored targets without causing minimal collateral damage. The system uses standard rocket launchers so it does not need platform integration or aircraft modifications.
Minimal ordnance crew training is needed since the system is loaded and fired the same as a standard 2.75-inch rocket. The system can utilize of existing warheads, rocket motors, and fuzes.
The APKWS also has performed demonstrations on Army Kiowa and light fixed-wing attack aircraft. It can be fired from any rotary-wing aircraft that can launch 2.75-inch rockets, which will include the UH-1 Huey and AH-64 Apache.
Navy officials working with the U.S. Air Force are planning to integrate the system onto fixed-wing AV-8B and A-10 aircraft, as well as the Fire Scout Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV).