NASHUA, N.H., 17 April 2006. BAE Systems' entry in the Army's Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System II (APKWS II) competition has completed environmental tests that validate the weapon's ability to withstand battlefield conditions.
APKWS II will serve as a lightweight, guided weapon effective against soft and lightly armored targets, and fill the gap between the 70mm rocket and the Hellfire missile. The system will be used on all Army aircraft currently using the 70mm rocket.
The tests verified that locating the weapon's Distributed Aperture Semi-Active Laser Seeker (DASALS) within the rocket's mid-body -- with wings and optics sealed within the guidance section -- protects the unit from sand, dust, vibration, ice, and other environmental hazards likely to be found in combat situations.
A 35-pound rocket dropped directly on its nose from a height of three feet sustained no damage to the guidance section.
BAE Systems' APKWS II solution locates the guidance section behind the warhead to enable use of the current Hydra 70 family of warheads and fuzes without modification.
The same DASALS technology used in BAE Systems' APKWS II offering is incorporated in the Army's Precision Guided Mortar Munitions program, which is now undergoing system testing.