The Navy is set to finalize delivering a new Counter-Unmanned Air System (UAS) weapon system to Ukraine this month as part of the Department of Defense aid package.

Last year, the Direct and Time Sensitive Strike program office’s contingency operations team (PMA-242) initiated urgent efforts to meet a specific requirement. This effort aimed to supply rocket-launching platforms, called Vehicle Agnostic Modular Palletized ISR Rocket Equipment (VAMPIRE) systems, to bolster wartime capabilities in Ukraine.

VAMPIRE is a compact, palletized rocket-launching platform featuring a sensor ball and four-shot Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) launchers. These systems are designed to be mounted on any truck with a flatbed. While the U.S. Navy and Army traditionally deploy APKWS against air-to-ground targets, the introduction of VAMPIRE allows for using laser-guided rockets to counter unmanned aerial threats.

“We delivered the first four systems in only six months by leveraging an innovative contracting strategy and working diligently to keep pace with the system’s rapid development,” said Cmdr. Kevin Raspet, PMA-242 foreign military sales deputy program manager.

Robert Galan, the Contingency Operations Case Manager for PMA-242, emphasized the team’s commitment to rapid deployment for the benefit of the warfighter. The team efficiently leveraged multiple contracting authorities to streamline the process, prioritizing the construction and delivery of an operationally effective system.

In the upcoming weeks, the PMA-242 Contingency Operations team intends to achieve a significant milestone by delivering the first-ever Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) with proximity fuze warheads. This technology is crucial for the Counter-Unmanned Air System (C-UAS) mission. Galan highlighted that the proximity fuze incorporates an RF sensor, enabling the APKWS to target Group 2 and Group 3 Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) effectively.

“Early reports indicate the weapon system is having an immediate impact in the ongoing Ukrainian wartime effort,” said Capt. Alex Dutko, PMA-242 program manager. “This activity is another example of our team responding to urgent requirements with unprecedented speed and agility.”

PMA-242 will deliver 14 VAMPIRE systems to Ukraine’s ground forces to target and neutralize UAVs and defend against ground threats. (Press Release)

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Post Image- A new rocket-launching platform, VAMPIRE, is shipped to Ukraine in June 2023 to support wartime efforts. VAMPIRE is a compact, palletized rocket-launching platform that consists of a sensor ball and four-shot Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) launchers designed to mount to any truck with a flatbed. VAMPIRE allows the laser-guided rocket to defend against unmanned aerial threats. (Image Credit: U.S. Navy photo)