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There is a requirement for lethal high density sub-projectiles that are affordable. Simple shapes, which are relatively inexpensive, lose lethality because of poor ballistic attributes. Machining these simple shapes to change attributes, in order to enhance their lethality, significantly increases the cost of the sub-projectile.

TRI Austin developed an optimized design for a high density sub-projectile that meets all performance requirements, and which is less expensive to manufacture than machining or sintering approaches. The baseline design has been verified through computational analysis of launch and flight modes, including dynamic analysis of the launch loads, and the aerodynamic heating and mechanical loads during ejection.

TRI Austin adapted commercial manufacturing processes to the production of these sub-projectiles. The baseline design is adaptable to a variety of penetrator materials and geometries, and the manufacturing process can be readily converted from one projectile design to another. The flight performance of the sub-projectile can be enhanced to obtain higher release altitude and longer flight time by changing component materials. The manufacturing rate is a function of manufacturing system scaling; hundreds of thousands of sub-projectiles per year are possible with relatively small capital investment.

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