Orbital to equip Lithuanian Vilkas 8x8 IFVs with MK44 chain guns
Orbital ATK has been selected by the Lithuanian Ministry of National Defence to deliver its MK44 Bushmaster Chain Gun, which will be installed on the Lithuanian Army’s new Vilkas 8x8 infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs).
The gun system has been designed to use programmable air bursting munitions (PABM) to defeat enemies hiding in protected positions.
Orbital ATK Defense Systems Group armament systems division vice-president and general manager Dan Olson said: “With an installed base approaching 2,000 cannons worldwide, our MK44 is sought after for its proven reliability and effectiveness by our allies fielding new systems or needing to upgrade existing platforms to meet growing threats.
“Our guns represent a commitment to working together with our nation and our allies to create and deliver superior armaments and services for those who defend their nation’s security.”
Orbital ATK said that the guns will be prepared to use its 30mm MK310 PABM for precise, point-in-space burst to defeat enemy targets hiding in defensive fortifications.
The PABM cartridge is able to penetrate light-armour vehicles or reinforced concrete walls, according to the company.
Additionally, the MK44 can be upgraded to a 40mm configuration to provide enhanced firepower against emerging threats.
On completion of the contract, the company will have supported the integration of 90 cannons with Rafael’s Samson MKII remote weapons station.
The cannon’s increased firepower, combined with the weapon station’s low-silhouette and reload capability under armour inside the hull, ensure greater crew survivability and effectiveness.
Delivery of the first MK44 chain guns will begin later this year.