Futurtec AG. Switzerland / Rheinmetall Defense
PELE and ALP technologies significantly enhance the effectiveness and
versatility of existing tube-fired ammunition (tank projectiles,
artillery shells and rockets).
Penetrator with Enhanced Lateral Effect (PELE)
PELE technology makes it possible to produce fully inert projectiles.
The new technology modifies the projectile performance characteristics,
significantly enhancing the accuracy of tank and artillery fire, while
substantially reducing the risk of collateral damage. Non-explosive PELE
ammunition consists of a high-density casing containing a core made of
low-density, low-compressibility material. Upon impact with the target,
the low-density material inside the shell is compressed to such an
extent that the casing bursts, generating numerous fragments that are
propelled in the direction of fire. This way, the round’s lethal impact
is restricted to a defined space or limited area, reducing the
likelihood of collateral damage. PELE and ALP make it possible to
manufacture warheads containing little or no explosive. Moreover,
existing ammunition can be inexpensively retrofitted with PELE and ALP
technology. Both technologies can be integrated in full- and sub-caliber
rounds, and fired from current and future weapon systems.
In August 2006 Rheinmetall Defense acquired the industrial property and
trademark rights of PELE and ALP. According to Rheinmetall, the company
plans to market them in conjunction with ammunition procurement and
upgrade programs both at home and abroad. Concurrently, negotiations
are underway with Diehl BGT Defence GmbH & Co. KG of Überlingen, Germany
to acquire licenses in various special caliber segments.
In November 2006
Rheinmetall announced the first order from Denmark, for DM-53 and
upgrading of DM-33 120mm KE rounds, fielding the PELE technology.
Active Lateral Penetrator (ALP)
The Active Lateral Penetrator takes the PELE principle a step
further: ALP technology can be used to create a highly effective inert
penetrator or a delayed-action shell containing small amounts of
explosive; the ratio between penetrating power and lateral impact can be
adjusted in the process. With an Active Lateral Penetrator, the
projectile’s final ballistic impact in and on the target is attained
with a small amount of explosive that can be activated irrespective of
the charge’s position. This creates a pressure field which is
transmitted via an inert conducting medium (e.g. liquid, plastic or
metal) to the surrounding shell casing, causing it to burst into
fragments or release a swarm of sub-projectiles.