The mobile Paladin's Powerful 155mm cannon has been updated by the US Army with new systems to extend the service of the weapon system. One of the improvements is the increase in artillery range which is vital to compete with other systems.
Self-propelled weapons like the howitzer seem useless in the age of missiles and over the horizon systems, which offer more long-range targeting. But, the US Army sees these systems as still relevant where missile technology has become a significant thrust in the modern battle. Although it is doubted, long-range artillery still has a place on the modern battlefield.
The old weapon system has given new life
The US Army has developed a system that uses GPS-guided artillery rounds instead of just dumb rounds traditional shells, the Extended Range Cannon Artillery program, cited News Atlas.
Technically the new technology for the 70km Extended Range Cannon Artillery program (ERCA), for the 155mm Paladin Integrated Management (PIM) aimed to keep it suitable for future combat, not retired, noted Defense News.
Overall, the ERCA combines the self-propelled cannon's chassis, ammo, fire control components, firing computer, and the sizeable 58-caliber weapon. An added range that is twice as better, precision ammo, and great integrity using new armor add-ons, even electrical systems that add more power to electrical components, which is a 600-volt system for future add-ons to keep it advance despite its age, the Paladin Howitzer's powerful 155-MM cannon.
Developers planned years back to keep the old Paladin in fighting shape well into the future by anticipating what future technologies it will need to stay competitive, according to a report in the Nationalist Interest.
Paladin Integrated Management (PIM) what's to know
Emphasis is given to tech that does not need a direct line of fire. Instead, the equipping of a Non-Line-of-Sight Cannon (NLOS-C) is based on a 155-mm cannon devised for combat systems on crew ground vehicles that got stopped in 2009.
NLOS-C is quicker by dropping the hydraulic drives as the old systems. Instead, these mobile howitzers have electric drives, which offer more advantages like better performance in inserting roads and consistently better muzzle velocities. All the onboard electronics and anything that needs power has more than enough to function efficiently.
Paladin is built on the Bradley Fighting Vehicle with compatible spares from the engine, parts, transmission drive, even down to the tracks. Able to shoot four shots in a minute, the army is keen on more Paladin PIM sets.
Not a new system but made better
Most of the M109A6 Howitzers were a 50's design and built-in in the '60s, too old for use. Existing Paladins are too heavy, lacks power; mostly a dead end because they cannot be updated.
Getting the major upgrades like smarter ammunition that can be programmed to attack more targets. In development is a hidden tank killer charge with more range to avoid getting shot. The secret tank killer weapon is Excalibur which can hit as far as 30-km away, an advantage for the Paladin Howitzer's powerful 155-MM Cannon; it is a significant change in how the US fights a ground war.