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US Army receives first batch of Precision Strike Missiles for enhanced tactical capabilities

By Defence Industry Europe

On December 8, the US Army announced the reception of the first batch of new Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) systems in their initial production version, Increment 1 Early Operational Capability. Officially, the PrSM is reported to have a range of 499 kilometers, a limit adhering to previously existing treaty restrictions from which the USA withdrew during Donald Trump's presidency. However, it's estimated that the actual range could be at least 550 kilometers, potentially extending to 700-800 kilometers. These new missiles are set to supplement and eventually replace the currently used ATACMS tactical missiles.

 

The PrSM is launched from modified ground-based rocket systems, specifically the M142 HIMARS and M270A2 MLRS. The M270A2 MLRS launcher can accommodate four PrSMs (as opposed to two ATACMS), and the M142 HIMARS launcher can house two PrSMs instead of one ATACMS. The PrSM features a solid-fuel engine, is 4 meters long, and has a diameter of 430 mm. Its warhead weighs 91 kg, similar to that of the GMLRS, and the initial version incorporates a satellite-inertial guidance system.

 

 

The Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) program has been underway by the US Army since 2016, with developmental work on the next version, Increment 2, starting in 2020. Increment 2 is expected to feature a multi-channel guidance head under the Land-Based Anti-Ship Missile (LBASM) program. The missile is being designed to target moving objects, primarily naval targets, as well as air defence systems.

 

 

Qualification tests for the PrSM were successfully conducted in November 2023 at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. The US Army currently anticipates achieving Initial Operational Capability (IOC) for PrSM Increment 1 in 2025, with deliveries of the Increment 2 version expected to begin in 2027. This progression marks a significant advancement in the US Army’s tactical capabilities, enhancing their precision strike potential in various operational scenarios.

 

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