Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Israel unveils its version of the XM-25 Punisher

(Israel) During its conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, the US military realised it needed a weapon which could accurately take out enemy combatants who were dug in, the boffins looked at the problem and came up with the XM-25. Basically, a grenade launcher, a small computer and a laser. In a nutshell, the man behind the XM-25 points the weapon at the target, presses a button and lazes it. That in turn informs the weapon how far the target is away, programs that information into a shell, and when the gun is fired, the grenade is set to explode right on target. If the idiot is dug in, the grenade is set to air burst over him, spoiling the rest of his day. It's been trialled in Afghanistan, and so positive was its use by the troops that when they asked if they could keep them in theatre, the powers that be agreed. The only problem is the weapons costs $30,000, the shells come in at $35 each, and to cap it all, it comes in at a heavyweight 5.5 kg (12 pounds).

It appears that the IDF has really been impressed by the XM-25, however, it seems they weren't impressed by its cost. So in typical IDF fashion they asked their tech guys to come up with something similar but cheaper, and they have come up with the MPRS (Multi-Purpose Rifle System). It consists of a 750 gram (1.5 pound) device that is attached to the rail on top of assault rifles and a grenade launcher fitted underneath.

It can be fitted to most assault rifles and adds very little weight to the weapon. The MPRS can put a 40-mm grenade through a window at a hundred meters. The 40-mm grenade can kill within five meters. And the best part - the “smart” 40-mm round costs less than $50 each. Which, while dearer than the XM-25 grenade at $35, works out much cheaper. Let's hope that the IDF get issued these weapon attachments before the next big blow-up.

Very little information can be found, however, the nice people at Israel Military Industries have knocked out a really informative power-point presentation which Google will open for you in your browser.