ATACMS Block II/ Brilliant Anti-armor Technology (BAT)
The ATACMS Block II/ Brilliant Anti-armor Technology (BAT) submunition is a
precision engagement weapon that takes advantage of the US ability to develop a
missile that integrates stand-off delivery accuracy with a submunition that has the
required effectiveness to kill moving armor columns in the deep battle zone. This
precision engagement capability will enable the joint US and combined allied forces
to interdict enemy formations through synchronized operations from dispersed
locations. This ability to engage deep targets will contribute to the joint effort that
assures dominant maneuver.
Army ACAT ID Program
Missile Quantity 1,528
Submunition Quantity- 19,871
Total program cost $4,007.1M
Average unit cost $1.46M
LRIPs - 1QFY98/1QFY99
Full-rate Production 4QFY00
Lockheed-Martin Vought Systems
The Block II ATACMS missile is the delivery system chosen by the Army to
replace the now defunct Tri-Service Stand-off Attack Missile as the deep attack
carrier for the Brilliant Anti-Armor Technology Submunition (BAT). The BAT is a
self-guided submunition that uses on-board sensors to seek, identify, employ a top
attack engagement profile, and destroy moving tanks and other armored combat
vehicles. It uses an acoustic sensor to seek out its armor targets, and infra-red
sensor to engage the vehicles.
After dispense of the 13 submunitions from the ATACMS Block II missile, the
weapons glide to their preprogrammed target area, and each selects a discrete target
within its assigned acoustic segment of the formation. Once a target has been
acquired by the terminal infra-red seeker, the weapon guides to terminal impact and
uses a tandem shaped-charge warhead to destroy the vehicle. With a relatively large
acoustic search/glide footprint, the BAT is capable of accommodating target location
ambiguity inherent with the engagement of moving formations.
Army TACMS Block IIA
The Fiscal Year 2001 Army budget request included decisions to restructure or "divest" a number of programs in order to provide some of the resources to support its transformation to achieve the ambitious deployment goals outlined in the October 1999 Army Vision. The restructured programs are the Crusader and the Future Scout and Cavalry System. The "divestitures" include Heliborne Prophet (Air), MLRS Smart Tactical Rocket (MSTAR), Stinger Block II, Command and Control Vehicle (C2V), Grizzly, Wolverine, and the Army Tactical Missile System Block IIA. Funding for these programs was reallocated to fund the Army Vision transformation strategy.
Army TACMS Block IIA is an extended range variant of the Block
II system. The Block IIA is a semi-ballistic missile used to deploy
six P3I BAT Brilliant Anti-Armor submunitions at ranges beyond
the Block II system. Block IIA is a near all-weather, day and
night, precision strike system as ranges beyond the capability
of existing cannons, rockets, and missiles. The P3I BAT is a pre-planned
product improvement to the BAT submunition to provide enhanced
acquisition capability and an improved warhead for use against
an expanded target set to include moving or stationary hot or
cold targets. The Block IIA program specifically consists of modifying
the payload section of the Block IA missile to carry and dispense
a payload of six P3I BAT submunitions at Block IA ranges.
The Block IIA is a modified version of the Block II missile and
will use common components of the Block I, IA and II systems.
The Block IIA will use the Block IA Improved Missile Guidance
System with Global Positioning System (GPS). The Block IIA integrates
the P3I BAT submunition into the Army TACMS Block IA missile.
Block IIA will use the Block II Sequencer Interface Unit and modifications
to the Missile Test Device needed to accommodate the P3I BAT.
The Block II missile modification program entered EMD in May 1995. A BAT
limited rate initial production (LRIP) decision is scheduled for 1QFY98, missile LRIP
in 1QFY99. The system will accomplish the operational test and evaluation in two
phases through FY99 and FY00. The milestone III production decision is currently
planned for late 1QFY00.
Brilliant Anti-Armor Submunition (BAT)
The BAT is an acoustic and infrared (IR) guided submunition that
autonomously searches for, tracks and defeats armored and critical
mobile targets. The BAT is a propulsionless, aerodynamically controlled
vehicle (glider). The BAT is delivered to the target vicinity
by the Army Tactical Missile System (Army TACMS), which is launched
from the M270 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS). As such, BAT
is part of the MLRS Family of Munitions (MFOM). The submunition
is designed to provide capability to attack deep, high-payoff
and time critical targets.
The dual mode (acoustic/IR) seeker and gliding capability accommodate
large target location uncertainties due to such efforts as target
motion, configuration or orientation; winds, delivery vehicle
accuracy or delivery patterns. This flexibility also accommodates
variability in the decision-to-shooter timeline and obviates the
need for inflight targeting updates to the Army TACMS.
Prior to dispense, the BAT thermal battery is initiated, the flight
software and mission parameters are downloaded, and the IMU is
aligned. After dispense at subsonic and supersonic speeds, the
BAT stabilizes itself, slows to acquisition speeds, and deploys
its aerodynamic surfaces. The BAT acquires the target or target
groups, glides to the immediate target area and selects an individual
vehicle to be engaged, ensuring that not all BATs pick the same
target. A top down, hit-to-kill terminal profile is prosecuted
toward a selected vulnerable region of the targeted vehicle. On
impact, the tandem conventional shaped-charge warhead is detonated,
assuring an M, F, or K-kill and collectively (with the other dispensed
BATs) securing delay, disruption or destruction of the targeted
Deep attack interdiction, kill moving armored combat vehicles.
In addition, P3I BAT's mission includes: cold stationary targets
and surface-to-surface missile transporter erector launchers and
heavy multiple rocket launchers.
Pre-planned Product Improvement (P3I) BAT:
P3I BAT is a pre-planned product improvement to the BAT submunition.
P3I BAT retains the basic physical characteristics of BAT while
offering enhanced acquisition capability and an improved warhead.
P3I BAT is designed to provide deep attack interdiction against
an expanded target set to include armored combat vehicles (moving
or stationary), stationary targets (hot or cold), surface-to-surface
missile transporter erector launchers and multiple rocket launchers.
P3I BAT will be delivered to the target area by both the Army
TACMs Block II and Block IIA missiles. P3I BAT is an MSTAR candidate
as the smart munition delivered by MLRS rockets. P3I BAT is designed
to provide the Commander with a Deep Strike weapon capable of
destroying, delaying and disrupting follow-on forces. P3I BAT
offers the Commander greater flexibility during combat planning
P3I BAT uses dual-mode sensors capable of acquiring and destroying
moving or stationary and hot or cold targets. The submunition
uses an improved, selective shaped charge warhead. The warhead
more (hard vs soft target detonation) is determined prior to submunition
impact. The sensors are more robust in adverse weather against
countermeasures offering enhancements over the baseline BAT submunition.
Development and Testing Activity
The principal test activities to date have been developmental events, including Design
Verification Tests (DVTs) and Contractor Development Tests (CDTs). The DVTs
were single submunition drops from a commercial fixed wing aircraft. The sequence
of the DVT testing built up to increasingly representative submunition evaluations.
The DVT sequence both tested the hardware configuration and contributed to the
modeling and simulation data base that will be eventually accredited for use in the
operational test and evaluation phase. The CDT series builds upon the DVT results
and culminates in full system Engineering Design Tests of missile/submunition
function. Because of the importance of all the developmental activity in the validation
of the modeling and simulation to the overall program evaluation, DOT&E and Army
operational test agency representatives observed key test events throughout both
DVT and CDT.
The evaluation of the Army TACMS Block II program also relies on a series of
supporting test events and exercises to demonstrate and evaluate the end-to-end
system performance. All phases of the Army's decide, detect, deliver concept of
employment will be evaluated. Key evaluation events include the MLRS Family of
Munitions (MFOM) Force Development Test and Evaluation (conducted in FY95),
ongoing Joint STARS System testing, and data gathering activity at selected joint
exercise and training events.
The ATACMS Block II Test and Evaluation Master Plan outlines an
operational evaluation strategy and supporting resources. The TEMP was approved
by DOT&E in July 1995 and the testing is being conducted in accordance with the
DOT&E assessment of the developmental flight testing to date is
cautionary. The most production representative tests have been the CDT series. Of
the fourteen CDT flight events, six were successful, three were failures, one was a
no-test, and the remainder have not yet been through a scoring conference. The
current point estimate of operating reliability of the submunition is .67 (LRIP exit
criterion is .68, final ORD requirement is .86).
The failures/no test conditions and attendant remedial actions have been:
The Live Fire Test and Evaluation (LFT&E) strategy was developed to take
advantage of expected hits on target vehicles in the drop tests of submunitions with
live warheads. In the past eighteen months, there have been only three live warhead
drops, and only one of these hit a target.
Each test event, regardless of success or failure, has contributed to the overall
modeling and simulation validation and accreditation schema. The program office has
been aggressive in implementing a strategy of early involvement of operational
testers in order to insure that the developmental test data is available to the DOT&E
and Army operational evaluators for both independent simulation and early
- CDT-1 (no test)-- IR dome fogging and deployment system malfunction.
Engineering development of a dome heater. Resequence tail and fin
- CDT-4--Deployment system malfunction. Redesign the deployment system
restraining band system.
- CDT-6 (dual drop)--Two failures induced by contaminated cooling gas and
seeker cooling design. Redesign of the gas flow venturi and enhanced quality
control requirements on gas supply bottles.
- CDT-8.1-- Premature detonation of warhead. Fault tree analysis underway.
- CDT-9 --Submunition failed to acquire
- CDT-10 --Submunition failed to acquire
- CDT-10B --Parachute squib wires
- CDT-11 --Submunition failed to acquire
Sources and Resources
Maintained by Robert Sherman
Originally created by John Pike
Updated Tuesday, February 08, 2000 7:46:24 AM