$14.7 million for grenade guns

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General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products

has been awarded $14.7 million by US Army to produce 1,097 MK19 grenade machine guns. Deliveries will commence in June 2006.

The MK19 is capable of firing up to 400 grenades per minute at a range of up to 2200 metres, and can provide lethal fire against a variety of targets, including lightly armoured vehicles and dismounted infantry.

According to the Federation of American Scientists, the MK19 can fire a variety of 40mm grenades. The M430 HEDP 40mm grenade will pierce armour up to two inches thick, and will produce fragments to kill personnel within five metres and wound personnel within 15 metres of the point of impact.

The MK19-3 can be mounted on the HMMWV, M113 family of vehicles, five-ton trucks, and selected M88A1 recovery vehicles.

Program management will occur at the company's Burlington, Vt, facility. Production work will be performed at General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products' Saco, Maine, facility, which has produced more than 32,000 MK19 systems for the US Government and its allies since 1984.