U.S. Army Extended Range Cannon Artillery (ERCA)
U.S. Army Extended Range Cannon Artillery (ERCA)

General Dynamics’s New Rocket-Assisted Projectile Exceeds 70-Km Range in Demonstration

General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems (OTS) successfully tested four XM1210 (XM1113ER) High Explosive Rocket-Assisted Projectiles that demonstrated a range capability in excess of 70 kilometers for the U.S. Army’s future Extended Range Cannon Artillery (ERCA) system. The key milestone was achieved Oct. 2 at the Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona. The XM1210 (XM1113ER) projectile is a critical component of the Army’s Long-Range Precision Fires modernization program that aims to create windows of opportunity for the joint force to penetrate an enemy’s anti-access, area denial (A2AD) network.

“Having the ability to reliably deliver mass fires at extended ranges with precision will revolutionize the modern battlefield, so we’re thrilled the XM1210 (XM1113ER) is meeting the Army’s requirements,” said Jason Gaines, vice president and general manager, General Dynamics-OTS Munition Systems. “It’s an honor for our team to work side-by-side with our U.S. government customers and industry partners to further our mission of delivering lethal and
precise capability at 70 kilometers by 2023.”

The XM1210 (XM1113ER) uses cutting-edge technology to extend the range of a 155mm artillery round. The innovative munition combines guidance capability with warhead lethality to form a more affordable solution for the Army’s ERCA system. Providing a range of more than 40 kilometers from a 39-caliber cannon and more than 70 kilometers from a 58-caliber cannon, the projectile improves protection for the artillery warfighter by increasing stand-off distance from enemy fire. It will be showcased at the General Dynamics-OTS exhibit for the Association of the United States Army’s (AUSA) annual conference Oct. 11-13 in Washington D.C.

The U.S. Army is assembling its first four Extended Range Cannon Artillery (ERCA) prototypes at Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey, and anticipates using at least one of the weapons during the upcoming ‘Project Convergence 2021′ exercise. The ongoing effort to field an incremental upgrade to BAE Systems’ Paladin M109A7 self-propelled howitzer, which includes a 58-calibre, 30 ft (9.1 m) gun tube that is designed to launch 155 mm rounds out to 70 km. To date the service has been test firing an early version of the weapon that it dubs the XM1299 prototype zero. Once assembly is complete the army intends to use at least one of these ERCA prototypes at its Project Convergence exercise at Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona, in November.

The Army demonstrated the Extended Range Cannon Artillery autoloader’s speed during a test on March 30, 2021, at Yuma Proving Ground, Ariz. ERCA can now fire at a range of over 40 miles. The Army hopes to achieve deterrence against looming threats through capabilities positioned in the Indo-Pacific theater such as long-range precision fires, said Gen. John M. Murray during a hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee. (Photo by Ana Henderson/U.S. Army)