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Army Considers Autoloader for Extended-Range Cannon

Jeff Brody

The U.S. Army is looking to equip its extended-range cannon artillery system with an autoloader for increased fired rounds per minute and reduced personnel requirements, National Defense Magazine reported Thursday. Col. John Rafferty, director of the long-range precision fires cross-functional team, told reporters in Virginia that the service branch is assessing two different autoloaders: an industry-designed model and a government-designed model. 

ERCA would work to double the range of Paladin self-propelled howitzers to boost resiliency against threats. The Army selected BAE Systems to prototype the ERCA system under a $45M contract. ERCA tests would begin in October at Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona.

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