XM1111 MRM: Clank Softly, and Carry a Better Shillelagh

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Leo2 fires Lahat –time-lapse photo(click to view full) Ever since anti-tank missiles proved their lethality on the battlefield, designers and officers have wanted to create tank rounds that could act like guided missiles. The pursuit hasn’t always gone well. The force created by a tank gun’s firing isn’t very hospitable to delicate electronics, which has resulted in some prominent failures. The M551 Sheridan light tank and its MGM-51 Shillelagh missile, for instance, became a negative example to the industry as a whole during its brief career in the 1960/70s. Electronics have moved on since then, however, and advances in electronics’ size and composition are beginning to make the concept thinkable once more. Israel’s laser-homing Lahat missile equips some Merkava tanks, will reportedly equip India’s new Arjun tanks, and has been qualified for use with the Leopard 2 tank family. It can be fired from missile launchers, and also offers 105mm or 120mm tank guns a range boost to 8km, the ability to kill heavily protected tanks from the top, and effectiveness against slow flying aerial targets like helicopters and UAVs. Russia’s shorter-range 9M119M Refleks (NATO designation AT-11 Sniper) round is also available on the market, to equip late-model Russian and […]

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