Cleverly using the name of its new cannon, the ASCALON, Nexter wishes long live the cavalry for St. George’s name day. According to the legend, ASCALON was the sword with which the equestrian Saint George killed the mythical Dragon and in this way the company wished the Cavalry-Armors Army Branch.
The ASCALON (“Autoloaded and SCALable Outperforming guN”) will feature a 140mm calibre cannon compared to the current 120mm caliber cannons of western origin. ASCALON is also the proposal of the company regarding the development of the gun for the new European Main Battle Tank (MGCS-Main Ground Combat System), aiming to replace the Leclerc and Leopard-2 from 2035 onwards.
Also read: MGCS | Hensoldt’s “Game Changer” proposal for the European battle tank – VIDEO
ASCALON, as stated by Nexter, is the outcome of the company’s long experience in the development of smoothbore 120mm guns for the Leclerc tank, the experience in the production of telescoped ammunition and the knowledge gained from the 140mm FTMA gun programme.
ASCALON’s open architecture design and technology will be fully mature in 2025, while its main advantages can be summarized as follows:
- Wider range of options for long-range projectiles (BLOS/NLOS: Beyond Line-Of-Sight/Non Line-Of-Sight), which will cause an optimal effect on the target from a safe distance
- Compact ammunition with a maximum length of 130 cm that can be stored and integrated in a self-loading turret, a technology mastered by Nexter and proven over many years on theLeclerc tank
- Increased firepower as the improved chamber will offer exceptional operational performance with an energy level close to 10 megajoules for kinetic ammunition, while remaining below the internal pressure level of current calibres (120mm calibre guns). According to the company, this potential will enable the weapon to evolve to a performance class of 13 megajoules capable of addressing any threat over the next 50 years
- A controlled blast effect recoil due to the use of an innovative muzzle brake, adjusted external pressure fields and an optimised firing impulse will strongly limit the blast effect of the shot. For this reason firing with ASCALON will not be prohibitive for the presence of infantry at short distances around the tank, especially in battles within residential areas
- Exceptional integration capacity on platforms weighing less than 50 tons without reducing the performance of the vehicle’s layout capabilities
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