Incoming fire may become a welcoming sound- the US Army is currently looking at a new way to resupply troops with essential equipment by way of resupply shells fired from artillery and mortars
The service was recently granted a patent for a new supply delivery method that could utilize hollow projectile shells, GPS guidance and parasails to deliver much-needed supplies to beleaguered troops in contested areas.
Known as the Ammunition Resupply Projectile (ARP) the delivery device could be used to supply ammunition, food, medical supplies, or anything else- if it fits, it ships.
According to the US Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center at Picatinny Arsenal, “a tail section is secured to the payload deployment section, which includes a steerable decelerator system. That system also houses a guidance and navigation system made up of electronics, power supply and a parafoil control mechanism.”
In low ASVAB score terms, the supplies are stuffed into a hollow artillery shell and shot in the general direction of friendly troops. A steerable parachute deploys and is guided to the good guys using on-board GPS.
For a pinned infantry platoon in an area where helicopters or even fixed wing aircraft can’t fly safely (which may be a very real threat in the near future), the ARP would be a godsend. The commander would simply call for resupply in a method similar to calling for fire, providing battalion mortars or artillery with a safe coordinate to land ammunition. Mortar crews stuff the shells with ammo (and possibly contraband, if they’re really on your side) and send it on its way.
Now a flying projectile on a centuries-old flight path, the shell suddenly takes a futuristic twist by deploying a parafoil, which will guide the ammunition (and long cut dip) to the grunts who need it most, tiding them over until reinforcements can arrive.
While ARP is merely a “vaporware” concept for now, the idea is pretty solid. With the future of American warfare looking less and less one-sided, there could come a time when American air superiority could be contested- making round-the-clock aerial resupply a distant, fond memory.
According to Popular Mechanics, the concept is currently limited to mortars, which leaves little room for more than 150 rounds of 5.56 ammo per mortar round.
© 2017 Bright Mountain Media, Inc. All rights reserved.
The content of this webpage may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written consent of Bright Mountain Media, Inc. which may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org, ticker BMTM.