Germany’s Rheinmetall announced Monday it has partnered with Northrop Grumman [NOC] to develop extended-range precision guided 155mm artillery ammunition, with plans to demonstrate a new integrated solution for the U.S. Army later this year.
The 10-year partnership between Rheinmetall’s South African subsidiary Rheinmetall Denel Munition and Northrop Grumman, officially signed in February, will also include development of a new 155mm projectile with an improved integrated propulsion system.
“During this period, the two companies plan to cooperate together in order to offer forward-looking ammunition technology to the international market, including the United States, to support future artillery operations,” Rheinmetall wrote in a statement.
The partnership will bring together Rheinmetall’s V-LAP projectile, which once reached a range of 76 kilometers during a 2019 test, and Northrop Grumman’s M1156 precision guidance kit (PGK) to further extend the ammunition’s range.
“In service with a number of armed forces, the M1156 PGK is an inexpensive, immediately available means of enhancing the accuracy of existing types of artillery ammunition,” Rheinmetall wrote. “In combination with Rheinmetall’s V-LAP projectile, which currently achieves the longest maximum range of any conventional artillery projectile, the M1156 PGK results in a swiftly available solution, proven in numerous combat operations, for long-range precision-guided munitions.”
Rheinmetall said earlier this year it conducted a successful test of the V-LAP integrated with the M1156 PGK in South Africa, which will be followed by a demo for the Army at Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona.