AAI Awarded $2.05 Million Contract for Continued Lightweight Small Arms Technologies Development

U.S. Army to Validate Ammunition during Dismounted Non-Networked Experiment

HUNT VALLEY, Md. — AUGUST 6, 2013 — AAI’s Lightweight Small Arms Technologies (LSAT) team, part of Textron Systems, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announced today it has been awarded a $2.05 million contract through the Department of Defense Ordnance Technology Consortium to further innovate both its caseless and cased-telescoped lightweight ammunition and weapon technologies.

This ordnance technology initiative includes three major thrusts. It continues to refine the LSAT 5.56mm Cased Telescoped ammunition and Light Machine Gun in support of an Army live fire experiment; advances development, testing and characterization of prototype 5.56mm Caseless ammunition; and extends Cased-Telescoped ammunition technologies to a 7.62mm cartridge.

The Department of the Navy’s Office of Naval Research, in Arlington, Va., and the Joint Service Small Arms Program Office (JSSAP), located at the U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) at Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey are jointly participating in this initiative.

The updated LSAT 5.56mm system will be assessed during the Army’s Dismounted Non-Networked Experiment (DNNE), taking place this month at the Maneuver Battle Lab at Fort Benning, Ga. The caseless ammunition effort will focus on improving propellant and ignition formulations in a 5.56mm configuration. The 7.62mm cased-telescoped cartridge will incorporate mature lightweight ammunition technologies successfully demonstrated in the 5.56mm LSAT cartridge.

Contract work will be conducted over a one-year period by the AAI-led team, which also consists of Alliant Techsystems (ATK), Veritay Technology and St. Marks Powder, a General Dynamics company.

“We’re pleased to be continuing our developmental work on lightweight ammunition and weapon technologies,” said AAI Program Manager Paul Shipley. "The LSAT program team has made significant advances, and this is the next step toward delivering a scalable, affordable family of lightweight weapons and ammunition.”

The LSAT team previously developed and demonstrated a prototype weapon and ammunition that provides up to a 50 percent reduction (20 lbs.) in weight compared to the current M249 machine gun and M855 brass cased ammunition carried by infantrymen.  Its Cased Telescoped Light Machine Gun (LMG) prototype has been demonstrated at Technology Readiness Level 7. The weapon design maintains the lethality and reliability of the existing weapon while offering improved ergonomics. A compact LSAT LMG variant, developed for close quarters applications and tested in 2012 by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command, features a quick-change 12-inch barrel and a folding buttstock.

About Textron Systems

Textron Systems has been providing innovative solutions to the defense, homeland security and aerospace communities for more than 50 years. Headquartered in Providence, R.I., the company is known for its unmanned aircraft systems, advanced marine craft, armored vehicles, intelligent battlefield and surveillance systems, intelligence software solutions, precision smart weapons, piston engines, test and training systems, and total life cycle sustainment and operational services. Textron Systems includes AAI Logistics & Technical Services, AAI Test & Training, AAI Unmanned Aircraft Systems, Aerosonde, ESL Defence, Lycoming Engines, Medical Numerics, MillenWorks, Overwatch, Textron Defense Systems and Textron Marine & Land Systems. More information is available at www.textronsystems.com .

About Textron Inc.

Textron Inc. is a multi-industry company that leverages its global network of aircraft, defense, industrial and finance businesses to provide customers with innovative solutions and services. Textron is known around the world for its powerful brands such as Bell Helicopter, Cessna Aircraft Company, Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO, Greenlee, and Textron Systems. More information is available at www.textron.com .    

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Quick facts

The updated LSAT 5.56mm system will be assessed during the Army’s Dismounted Non-Networked Experiment (DNNE), taking place this month at the Maneuver Battle Lab at Fort Benning, Ga.
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Work will be conducted over a one-year period by the AAI-led team, which also consists of Alliant Techsystems (ATK), Veritay Technology and St. Marks Powder, a General Dynamics company.
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The LSAT team previously developed and demonstrated a prototype weapon and ammunition that provides up to a 50 percent reduction (20 lbs.) in weight compared to the current M249 machine gun and M855 brass cased ammunition.
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