Marines’ Ship-Killing RC Truck Gets (Some) Funding

A Navy-Marine Expeditionary Ship Interdiction System launcher deploys into position aboard Pacific Missile Range Facility Barking Sands, Hawaii, Aug. 16, 2021. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Maj. Nick Mannweiler, released)

As spotted in last week’s DOD Contracts:

Oshkosh Defense LLC, of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, is awarded a $23,709,168 hybrid firm-fixed-price, cost-plus-fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the procurement of Remotely Operated Ground Unit for Expeditionary Fires (ROGUE-Fires) carriers for use in the Navy/Marine Expeditionary Ship Interdiction System (NMESIS). NMESIS is a land-based missile launcher platform that provides the Marine Corps High Mobility Artillery Rocket System battalions and operating forces with anti-ship capabilities. NMESIS integrates a Naval Strike Missile (NSM) launcher unit, capable of launching two NSMs, onto a ROGUE-Fires carrier. Work will be performed in Alexandria, Virginia (18%); Gaithersburg, Maryland (15%); and Oshkosh, Wisconsin (67%). Work is expected to be completed in November 2023. Fiscal 2022 research, development, test and evaluation (Marine Corps) funds in the amount of $15,989,908 will be obligated and will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This action is a follow-on production contract in accordance with 10 U.S. Code § 4022(f). Marine Corps Systems Command, Program Manager Long Range Fires, Quantico, Virginia, is the contracting activity (M67854-22-D-1002).

As covered previously on the blog, ROGUE Fires, a remote-control JLTV loaded with a containerized module that includes a two-pack of the Norwegian Kongsberg-developed 900-pound Naval Strike Missile, is set to be a big deal for Marine Littoral units. The current buy is set to field 14 new Marine expeditionary precision strike units with 252 launchers. These could be useful on anything from atolls and reefs to oil platforms and grounded old hulks. The concept was validated after it got some actual hits in during a SINKEX against a moored FFG last fall.

A Naval Strike Missile is launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility Barking Sands during the sinking exercise. (U.S. Marine Corps/MC2 Lance Cpl. Dillon Buck)

The Marines are already theorizing about using their NMESIS batteries while underway on amphibious support ships if needed. The same concept could quickly arm ships taken from trade, such as old RO/ROs and tankers, giving the 1990’s Arsenal Ship theory an ersatz rebirth, at least for anti-ship purposes.

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