BAE Systems has been awarded a $63.9m (£40m) contract from the US Army for the procurement and fabrication of seven prototype battlefield vehicles.
The US Army Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command will receive five M109A6 Paladin Integrated Management (PIM) self-propelled howitzer vehicles and two prototype M992A2 field artillery ammunition support vehicles (FAASVs).
‘The Paladin provides critical fire support for soldiers in the Heavy Brigade Combat Team [HBCT],’ said Joe McCarthy, vice-president and general manager of HBCT Systems for BAE Systems. ‘The PIM programme will ensure that this essential fire support system remains sustainable through its projected life beyond the year 2050.’
The Paladin PIM uses the existing M109A6 main armament and cab structure and replaces older chassis components with newer components from the Bradley combat systems.
BAE Systems hope that this will increase sustainability and commonality across the HBCTs.
The Paladin PIM structure integrates electric elevation and traverse drives, an electric rammer and a digital fire-control system. The M992A2 FAASV provides armour-protected ammunition delivery for the M109A6 Paladin.
BAE Systems engineers will perform design and engineering analysis work for the vehicle structure, automotive systems and electric and vehicle electronics at the company’s facilities in Pennsylvania, California, New York, Minnesota and Michigan as well as US government facilities at the Army Research and Development Center in Picatinny, New Jersey.
The remanufacture programme for the Paladin fleet will be performed in partnership with the Anniston Army Depot and at BAE Systems’ facilities in York, Pennsylvania, and Elgin, Oklahoma.