South Korea To Develop Airburst Machine Gun


Regular Member
Aug 3, 2009
South Korea plans to develop an indigenous machine gun system that can fire air-bursting munitions with laser-target acquisition and opto-electronic fire control, the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) announced. The new machine gun will be able to penetrate light armored vehicles, it said in a news release. A total of 27.3 trillion won ($22 million) will be spent over the next few years for research and development of the 2,000-meter-range machine gun, to be initially deployed by 2015, it said.

The agency has selected S&T Daewoo as the preferred bidder for systems integration and gun development, EO System for fire control development, and Hanwha Corp. for munitions, according to the release. Contracts will be made by September, it added. South Korea already has developed an airburst rifle. The DAPA announced in April that it would soon start producing the K11 rifle that can fire both standard 5.56mm NATO-compatible ammunition and a 20mm airburst round, selected by a single trigger.

The multipurpose rifle, developed by the state-funded Agency for Defense Development (ADD), is modeled on the U.S. XM29 Objective Individual Combat Weapon, whose development was canceled in 2004. The weapon consists of a semi-automatic 20mm smart grenade launcher, an underslung assault carbine firing a standard 5.56mm NATO round, and a top-mounted computer-assisted sighting system with integrated laser rangefinder, and thermal infrared night vision capabilities, according to ADD officials. Under a self-detonation system, the 20mm round from the rifle can trace its target and explode three to four meters above it, and it is also capable of penetrating walls of buildings, they said.

ASIAN DEFENCE: September 2009

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