Raytheon receives US Marine Corps Excalibur order
Raytheon has received an urgent operational order from the US Marine Corps for 1,037 155m Excalibur extended range, precision-guided artillery projectiles for use in Afghanistan, according to a press release issued by the company on 25 October.
Raytheon said that the US Marines (USMC) have ‘significantly increased operational use of Excalibur in the last year, firing as many as 32 rounds in one week’, and that integration of Excalibur into the regiment combat teams has given the USMC the ability to provide ‘responsive precision artillery fires across their operational zone’.
The Excalibur family of precision projectiles has been in use with the USMC and the US Army since 2007. Using GPS precision guidance technology, Excalibur provides accurate, first round, fire-for-effect capability in an urban setting. Raytheon claims that Excalibur is considered a true precision weapon, impacting at a radial miss distance of 6 meters from the target.
Lt Col Mike Milner, US Army Excalibur product manager, said of the operational need requirement: ‘the marines are using Excalibur as a critical, life-saving capability in Afghanistan. They have developed tactics to enable its use on demand and as a result, they have been able to conduct essential missions that would otherwise go unengaged’.
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