The US Marine Corps has released photos for the first time of a long-range unmanned surface vehicle [LRUSV] equipped with a Hero-120 multi-purpose launcher for eight cruise munitions.
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It is worth noting that the Hero-120 kamikaze drone was created based on the FGM-148 Javelin ATGM warhead. It is equipped with an electric motor that is capable of accelerating stray munitions up to 185 km/h.
According to the declared characteristics, the mass of the unmanned kamikaze aircraft Hero-120 is 12 kg, and the weight of the warhead can be from 1.5 to 4.5 kg. It can be in the air for up to 60 minutes, the maximum distance to hit the target is up to 80 km from the launch point, and the accuracy of the circular probable deviation [CEP] is up to 1 meter.
That is, judging by the mass of the warhead, the Hero-120 kamikaze drone is actually capable of hitting enemy manpower, small fortifications, and armored vehicles, including tank-type targets, as well as small sea targets.
The photos were taken in April during a visit by Marine Lt. Gen. Brian Cavanaugh to Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story in Virginia, who came specifically to learn about the capabilities of this new unmanned boat.
It is known that the shipbuilding company Metal Shark signed a contract with the Department of the Navy in January 2021 to develop LRUSV maritime drones for the US Marine Corps.
Judging by the tail number photo, Metal Shark has since delivered only an initial batch of its 3 LRUSV prototypes equipped with the Hero-120 launch vehicle.
However, it is known that the US Navy for fiscal year 2024 has already requested $25.25 million for the purchase of LRUSV unmanned surface boats with a Hero-120 UAV launcher capable of autonomous operation.
However, the Navy Command did not disclose the cost of a single naval drone or how many of them the US Navy plans to purchase for the Marine Corps.
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