Textron Systems Weapon & Sensor Systems has successfully completed a live-fire demonstration of its G-CLAW precision-guided weapon at the US Army’s Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona, US.
Dropped by a Cessna Caravan aircraft equipped with a US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) common launch tube (CLT) dispenser from 10,000ft, the GPS-guided weapon struck within 4m of the designated spot and detonated on the target as intended.
The demonstration confirmed the weapon’s guidance, warhead and its fusing capability, and represents the last in a series of five tests conducted this year to qualify G-CLAW to a technology readiness level (TRL) of seven.
Textron Weapon & Sensor Systems senior vice-president and general manager Ian Walsh said: "What we accomplished at Yuma Proving Ground further validates the effectiveness of this highly flexible weapon system.
"This demonstration sets the stage for further integration of additional features, as well as testing from other aircraft platforms, all toward the goal of providing the warfighter with an accurate and affordable weapon system designed for static or moving targets."
G-CLAW testing and development is being carried out as part of a cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) signed with the USSOCOM Program Executive Office (PEO) Fixed Wing.
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Employing the same proven battlefield technologies as the original clean-area weapon (CLAW), G-CLAW is a lightweight, precision-guided glide weapon with a scalable blast fragmenting warhead, designed to be highly effective against vehicle and personnel targets.
The modular weapon, which has been engineered to dispense from CLT and standard bomb rack dispensers, incorporates a height-of-burst sensor for optimal effects against a broad target set, and can be modified for changing mission requirements at minimum development cost.
The weapon can be integrated onto multiple aircraft, including Class IV unmanned aerial vehicles, light attack aircraft such as Textron’s Beechcraft AT-6 and Scorpion, as well as converted commercial aircraft such as a Cessna Caravan.
Image: G-CLAW adds a GPS guidance system to the proven CLAW blast-fragmented unitary area munition. Photo: © 2014 AAI Corporation.