U.S. Army to boost air and missile defense
The U.S Army News Service has announced that Army’s budget request for fiscal year 2020 includes funding to field two “Iron Dome” air defense batteries and the first Maneuver Short-Range Air Defense, or MSHORAD, battery of Stryker variants.
Lt. Gen. James F. Pasquarette, the Army’s deputy chief of staff, G-8, spoke Tuesday afternoon at the Association of the U.S. Army’s “Hot Topics” seminar for Air and Missile Defense. His presentation came shortly after specifics of the budget proposal were announced at the Pentagon.
“There’s $1.35 billion aligned against the top four AMD modernization programs,” Pasquarette said about the FY20 budget request.
He added that’s a 65 percent increase from the 2019 budget for funding the four programs: MSHORAD; the Indirect Fire Protection Capability, or IFPC; the Lower Tier Air and Missile Defense Sensor, or LTAMDS program; and the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System known as IBCS.
Over $300 million of the proposed budget is earmarked for MSHORAD, which Pasquarette said is a 280 percent increase from this year. It will complete the development and begin low-rate initial production of the MSHORAD systems, he said. It also begins funding of the multi-mission high-energy laser that will eventually be mounted on the MSHORAD Stryker vehicle.
“So we’ll have two really different platforms eventually,” he said. “One with guns and missiles and one with a laser.”
The FY20 budget begins to equip the first of four MSHORAD battalions, he said. The MSHORAD Strykers fielded next year will have four Stinger missiles on one side and two Hellfire missiles on the other, with a 30mm autocannon and machinegun in the center.
The MSHORAD Strykers with 50-kilowatt lasers are scheduled to be fielded beginning in 2024, he said.
In 2020, the Army also plans to field two batteries of Israel’s “Iron Dome” system as an interim solution for …read more
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