A Computer Graphics representation of FGM-172 SRAW.
|Type||Anti-Tank Missile Launcher|
|Place of origin||United States|
|Used by||United States|
|Weight||9.7 kg (21 lb)|
|Length||70.5 cm (2 ft 3 3⁄4 in)|
|Width||14 cm (5.5 in)|
|Caliber||139.7 mm (fires 139 mm missiles)|
|Muzzle velocity||250 m/s (820 ft/s)|
|Effective range||17 to 600 m (19 to 660 yd)|
|Filling||FGM-172A: Explosively Formed Penetrator|
FGM-172B: multipurpose blast warhead
The FGM-172 SRAW (Short-Range Assault Weapon), also known as the Predator SRAW, was a lightweight, close range missile system produced by Lockheed Martin, developed by Lockheed Martin and Israel Military Industries. It was designed to complement the Javelin anti-tank missile. The Predator had a longer range and was more powerful than the AT4 that it was designed to replace, but had a shorter range than the Javelin.
The missile system received the FGM-172 designation from the Department of Defense in 2006. Prior to that it was known as the SRAW MK 40 MOD 0.
Features[edit | edit source]
The Predator was a fire-and-forget weapon utilizing a system called predicted line of sight (PLOS). In this system the operator tracks the target for a short time (at least 2 seconds and no more than 12) prior to launch. This data is then combined with known missile flight performance to predict a flightpath that will intercept the target's course, and program the missile's autopilot system. An inertial guidance unit was incorporated into the autopilot to compensate for crosswind and other factors encountered in flight. The original FGM-172A was an overfly top attack (OTA) type and used a downward-facing dual laser and magnetic sensor to detect the target and trigger the detonation of the warhead. The laser sensor would locate the positions of the leading and trailing edges of the tank, and the magnetic sensor would provide confirmation of the position of the tank. Once a target was detected, the FGM-172A would fire an explosively formed penetrator downwards into the weak armor of the turret roof. The missile does not "lock on" to a specific target, rather, the FGM-172A would attack the first potential target it encountered during its flight. TM 10687A OR/C notes that operators must avoid firing the weapon over destroyed vehicles for this reason.
The FGM-172B altered the flight control systems for a direct interception rather than an overfly course, and featured a dual-mode impact fuze with an automatic time delay if the missile struck a soft target.
The Kestrel variant featured an additional unguided direct-fire mode.
Variants[edit | edit source]
The missile was produced in two variants, each with a separate weapons payload.
The FGM-172B featured a multi-purpose blast-fragmentation warhead, intended for use as an assault weapon. Also known as the FGM-172B SRAW-MPV.
History[edit | edit source]
The SRAW (Short-Range Assault Weapon) program was begun by the U.S. Marine Corps in 1987 as a replacement for existing unguided M72 LAW and AT4 anti-armor rockets. A demonstration/validation phase was conducted by several companies between February 1990 and mid-1993, with the first test firings occurring in 1991. In July 1994, the Predator design of Loral (now Lockheed Martin) was selected for the EMD (Engineering and Manufacturing Development) phase. EMD Phase I was completed in March 1998, followed by Phase II; 230 missiles were produced during EMD. In February 2002, the Marine Corps signed a contract with Lockheed Martin for the low-rate initial production (LRIP) of 330 Predator systems, with a second LRIP contract for 400 systems signed in January 2003. In October 2003, the Marine Corps announced a decision to cancel further procurement of the system following completion of low-rate production. The system successfully completed first article and lot 1 testing at the Naval Air Warfare Center, China Lake, California in December 2003. In June 2004, Lockheed Martin received a contract to refit all 700 remaining SRAW rounds to the FGM-172B SRAW-MPV (Multi-Purpose Variant) configuration with a new multi-purpose blast-fragmentation warhead, converting the system from an anti-armor to a direct-fire urban assault weapon effective against buildings and bunkers, which better fulfilled the needs of the Marines in response to requirements identified during Operation Iraqi Freedom; delivery of the first 400 rounds was completed in May 2005. As of 2005, all the FGM-172A missiles supplied previously to the USMC had been retrofitted with the FGM-172B multi-purpose blast warhead to replace the top attack anti-armor warhead.
The Kestrel was a derivative of the Predator for the British Army's Next-generation Light Anti-tank Weapon (NLAW). In 2000, the UK Ministry of Defence carried out trials of 13 Kestrels. In May 2002, the Saab Bofors Dynamics MBT-LAW was chosen for the UK NLAW requirement. In 2003, the U.S. Army decided not to adopt a version of the Predator as its MPIM/SRAW (Multipurpose Individual Munition – Short Range Assault Weapon) candidate.
Former operators[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- "Lockheed Martin to Develop Follow-on to Shoulder-Launched Multi-Purpose Assault Weapon for U.S. Marine Corps". Archived from the original on 2011-10-20. https://web.archive.org/web/20111020212045/http://www.lockheedmartin.com/news/press_releases/2003/LockheedMartinDevelopFollowOnShould.html.
- "Army Technology FGM-172 SRAW". http://www.army-technology.com/projects/predator_kestrel/. Retrieved 2012-05-12. [unreliable source?]
- "Lockheed Martin FGM-172 SRAW". 2006-09-27. http://www.designation-systems.net/dusrm/m-172.html. Retrieved 2008-10-28.
- Jennifer Allen (2005-05-26). "Lockheed Martin, Responding to U.S. Marine Corps Needs, Converts Anti-Tank Missile for Urban Assault" (press release). Lockheed Martin. http://www.missilesandfirecontrol.com/our_news/pressreleases/05pressrelease/052605_SRAW-MP.shtml.
- John Antal "Packing a Punch: America's Man-Portable Antitank Weapons" page 88 Military Technology 3/2010, Monch Publishing
[edit | edit source]
- Lockheed Martin video on firing of Predator
- Multi-Purpose Individual Munition - Forecast International
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