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U.S. Army’s Latest Gadget: A Robo-Mortar Truck That Can Hit Bullseyes While on the Move

In a groundbreaking move that could redefine artillery warfare, BAE Systems has handed over a prototype Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV) equipped with a remote-controlled turreted mortar system to the U.S. Army. This innovation, straight out of a science fiction novel, features a nifty top plate system dubbed the External Mission Equipment Package (ExMEP), designed for hassle-free installation of various turrets, including the state-of-the-art Patria NEMO 120mm system.

This prototype is the fruit of a speedy technology investment collaboration among the U.S. Army, BAE Systems, and Kongsberg/Patria, showing off the possible future variations for the versatile AMPV family. By repurposing the already in-service AMPV chassis, the collaboration aims to provide the Army with rapid deployment of new combat capabilities, such as the Patria NEMO, at a fraction of the cost and time.

Bill Sheehy, the AMPV program director at BAE Systems, couldn’t hide his excitement about delivering this “remarkable capability” for the Army’s evaluation. The AMPV Turreted Mortar prototype, born from a 2022 capability discussion with the Army, showcases a forward-looking approach to development that prioritizes the warfighter’s needs.

Not just any mortar launcher, this AMPV Turreted Mortar prototype stands out for its ability to execute Multiple Rounds Simultaneous Impact missions, allowing up to five mortar rounds to hit targets simultaneously in less than four seconds, whether the vehicle is tearing across the battlefield or standing its ground.

The introduction of this prototype, alongside another recent unveiling of a Counter-Unmanned Aircraft System (C-UAS) capability, signals BAE Systems’ commitment to adapting the AMPV platform for the ever-evolving needs of the Army’s Armored Brigade Combat Team. Over the coming months, the Army will put this turreted mortar behemoth through its paces in field evaluations, testing its mettle against the rigorous demands of modern warfare.

This latest development points to a future where the battlefield could see an amalgamation of high-tech armor and precision firepower, all while keeping soldiers safely buttoned up inside their metal beasts.

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