June 1, 2009
System ready for rapid fielding
YUMA PROVING GROUNDS, Ariz., -- A new type of 120 mm precision-guided mortar round hit eight out of nine target areas during a recent U.S. Army-Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) cooperative research and development agreement demonstration.
The rounds made by an Israel Military Industries-Raytheon team hit short- and long-range targets, demonstrating greater range than current unguided 120 mm high-explosive mortar rounds in the U.S. Army's inventory.
The new mortar round, called 120GM DAGGER™, is guided by a GPS and inertial navigation system and enables soldiers to place a mortar within 10 meters (approximately 11 yards) of a target. DAGGER is being designed to be compatible with the U.S. Army's 120 mm Battalion Mortar System.
"The warfighter needs a precision-guided mortar and DAGGER meets that requirement," said Bill Patterson, Raytheon's DAGGER program manager. "DAGGER has demonstrated a high level of maturity, and we are ready to put it in production and get it to the soldiers in the field immediately."
During the demonstration, the U.S. Army fired DAGGER rounds at a variety of target areas located in mountainous terrain. The rounds were fired under field conditions, including minimum and maximum range and hot and cold round temperatures. Seven of eight rounds reaching the target area landed within 10 meters of their target, a level of precision impossible with an unguided mortar munition.