Sensor Fuzed Weapon Units from New Assembly Line Successfully Tested
Tests Result in Assembly Line Qualification; Demonstrate “Clean” Technologies
Wilmington, MA. - Textron Defense Systems, an operating unit of Textron Systems, a Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT) company, announced today that its Sensor Fuzed Weapon (SFW) smart munition system has completed three successful flight tests at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. The tests utilized SFW production units assembled at the new McAlester Army Ammunition Plant (MCAAP) load, assembly and pack line in Oklahoma. As a result, the new line was fully qualified.
The Textron Defense Systems’ SFW is unique among munitions systems because of its redundant technologies for clean battlefield operation. In fact, it is the only air-delivered weapon that meets the strict unexploded ordnance criteria for cluster munitions set forth by the U.S. Secretary of Defense in June 2008.
Relocation of the SFW assembly line from the Kansas Army Ammunition Plant to MCAAP started in 2005 in accordance with the Base Realignment and Closure Act. The relocation team, chaired by Textron Defense Systems, implemented building upgrades, including environmental controls and special non-conductive floors, then designed and implemented a final assembly line that incorporates Lean continuous improvement techniques for a condensed footprint and continued high quality output.
“We are committed to delivering munitions solutions that are both effective in their missions and free of dangerous unexploded ordnance,” says Senior Vice President and General Manager Mark Catizone. “For years, Textron Defense Systems has designed its smart munitions with robust, technologically advanced clean battlefield technologies to ensure that we are keeping non-combatants as safe as our warfighters.”
SFW contains the Textron Defense Systems BLU-108 submunition and smart Skeet warheads that are equipped with dual-mode passive infrared and active laser sensors. If a Skeet warhead does not detect a valid target over its trajectory, three safety modes will activate. In the first mode, the active laser measures the altitude, allowing the Skeet to self destruct at 50 feet. The second mode causes the Skeet to self-destruct eight seconds after launch. SFW also is equipped with a time-out device that consumes all electrical firing energy in order to render the warhead inactive minutes after hitting the ground, a third measure to protect against hazardous unexploded ordnance.
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