Wednesday, April 24, 2024

BAE unveils a low-cost air-launched precision-guided munition

The Australian arm of BAE Systems has announced the design and development of a new sovereign munition concept known as RAZER.

RAZER is a low-cost air-launched precision-guided munition that is designed to transform a 40-50kg standard non-guided munition into a precision air-launched weapon at a low cost.

The RAZER system consists of a wing-body kit and tail unit equipped with a powered GPS/INS guidance control and navigation system aimed at operations from uncrewed combat air vehicles (UCAV) and rotary wing aircraft.

“RAZER can meet urgent local and overseas demand for low-cost sovereign munition solutions that could be deployed from the air. It could deliver a powerful and affordable battlefield strike capability for users globally,” BAE Systems Australia Chief Executive Officer Ben Hudson said. “RAZER addresses a clear gap in the market for sovereign guided weapons. It will enable our Australian Defence Force ease of access to world-class munitions right here in Australia.”

RAZER is designed to transform a standard non guided munition into a precision air launched weapon at low cost.
RAZER is designed to transform a standard non-guided munition into a precision air-launched weapon at low cost. Credit: BAE Systems

Hudson says the ability to deploy RAZER from an airborne platform and glide to the target would dramatically increase the weapon’s range and provide significant stand-off range for the launch platform. Currently, there is a significant gap between inexpensive, short-range, land-based weapons of this caliber and expensive, long-range, air-launched weapon systems.

This announcement follows the unveiling of the STRIX uncrewed aerial system (UAS) at Avalon 2023, leveraging more than three decades of the company’s expertise in autonomous systems.

“The company is working with the Commonwealth of Australia’s Guided Weapons and Explosive Ordnance (GWEO) Enterprise on a number of levels, with RAZER adding to our existing sovereign capability,” BAE Systems Australia Managing Director, Defence Delivery Andrew Gresham said. “Design, development, and production of these munitions will utilize our decades-long history of advanced manufacturing to establish and grow the country’s domestic capability and export market.”