• The new round will be capable of firing from the US Army’s Paladin self-propelled howitzers.
    The new round will be capable of firing from the US Army’s Paladin self-propelled howitzers. US DoD

General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems (GD-OTS) has been awarded a contract by the Pentagon valued at US$15 million for a prototype of the 155mm XM1113 Rocket-Assisted Projectile (RAP) round.

The agreement was enabled by the US Government’s expanded definition of the National Technology and Industrial Base to include Australia. In a statement, GD-OTS said it is working with Thales Australia to expand the international supply chain and make the round available to overseas customers.

The XM1113 RAP uses rocket technology to deliver greater thrust to the round compared the legacy M549A1. The improvement will enable current US 155mm field artillery systems to fire to a range of 40 kilometres, a 30 per cent increase. When fired from the planned future Extended Range Artillery Cannon, the XM1113 shell will achieve ranges out to 70 kilometres.

“The XM1113 RAP brings enhanced performance to the battlefield, increasing lethality and extending range for the cannon artillery warfighter. We are proud to support the US Army’s modernization initiatives to provide overmatch capability to the warfighter and look forward to meeting the operational needs of our international allies,” Jason Gaines, Vice President and General Manager of Munition Systems at GD-OTS, said.

Thales Australia welcomed the announcement, noting that the contract could lead to additional exports from Thales’s operations at Benalla and Mulwala.

 “Thales is delighted to be associated with GD-OTS, and through our partnership to potentially offer and deliver a world-class capability to the ADF,” Corry Roberts, Vice President Land for Thales Australia, said. “This announcement could lead to additional export opportunities, securing and increasing jobs and investment for Thales and our local supply chain.”

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