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BAE SYSTEMS M777 Howitzer Completes First Firing of GPS-Guided Projectile.

Business Editors

YUMA, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aug. 8, 2003

BAE SYSTEMS has completed the first firing trials of its M777E1 howitzer with the Raytheon XM 982 Excalibur GPS/Inertial Navigation-guided extended range 155mm projectile.

The trials, completed July 23 at Yuma Proving Grounds, evaluated seven XM982 instrumented ballistic test projectiles fired at three different temperatures using the Modular Artillery Charge System (MACS). The purpose of the tests was to characterize the ballistic environment and assess the XM982's physical compatibility with the M777E1 lightweight 155mm howitzer.

The M777E1 is in low-rate initial production to replace aging M198 howitzers currently in use by both the U.S. Army and Marine Corps. Delivery of the first production howitzer to the Marine Corps for testing is scheduled for February 2004.

The M777E1 is being developed with the Towed Artillery Digitization (TAD) system to provide position location and pointing as well as digital integration with the AFATDS artillery fire control system. Part of the digitization effort is to provide the electronic interface with the XM982 projectile needed to provide the round with its location and target coordinates.

When fielded to the Army in 2006, the M777E1 and Excalibur will provide precision strike capability to cannon artillery. Excalibur will eventually provide 10-meter accuracy and a maximum range of 40 km. The M777E1 and Excalibur combination will be fielded to the Army's Stryker Brigade Combat Teams and the XVIII Airborne Corps Artillery. This potent combination will provide highly mobile, accurate, and networked fires to the Army and Marines Corps early entry forces.


BAE SYSTEMS is an international company engaged in the development, delivery and support of advanced defense and aerospace systems in the air, on land, at sea and in space. The company designs, manufactures and supports military aircraft, surface ships, submarines, radar, avionics, communications, electronics and guided weapon systems. It is a pioneer in technology with a heritage stretching back hundreds of years. It is at the forefront of innovation, working to develop the next generation of intelligent defense systems.

BAE SYSTEMS has major operations across five continents and customers in some 130 countries. The company has 100,000 people and generates annual sales of approximately $18 billion through its wholly owned and joint venture operations.

BAE SYSTEMS, innovating for a safer world.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Aug 8, 2003
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