dhyana wrote:Due to the low rate of production, the XM982 Excalibur rounds is costing us tax payers us tax payers $140,000.00 each.
Think of the XM982
as a sniper round that is used in danger close situations (due to its < 4 m CEP at all ranges) where without it artillery would not be able to provide support or for other needs where it might be more suited (different angle of attack for example in the ES mode). It is not a replacement for anything but an additional capability.
Given its special case use, we can leave the XM982 out for now and focus on Ramana's cost comparison using PGK as it is a better indicator for the true cost of the overwhelming majority of your precision guided artillery rounds. I guess you could add some additional cost to that for the RAP round on which you add your PGK (assuming that you would need to procure RAP rounds to get extended range).
Comparison between Medium-Long range artillery rounds and guided or unguided MLR's has to assume targets against which both munition types would work. No point in discussing targets against which you need much higher firepower that comes with MLRS or your short ranged ballistic missiles. However, if you do think that there are targets out there that your artillery can threaten with these shells, at an affordable cost, then it really complicates the enemy calculus when it has to take into account that you can reach medium to long distances with multiple weapon types and with high accuracy. It forces the enemy to either invest in defenses, or be constantly mobile etc.
For PGK we are using the US procurement cost data (roughly $8500 URF per M1156 kit) since that kit is in production and is being mass produced at the highest rate. Adding $5000 in additional costs for the RAP round and the other misc. items you get to a cost of $13,500 per round. I am not very familiar with the worldwide market/production of guided MRL systems but in the US, GMLRS costs roughly $130K per round for a annual procurement of around 6500 rounds in 2018 (US Army budgets). I guess you could bring the cost down further if you upped production to a 1000+ a month as long as there is demand. However, on the other side there are costs that are being added to the guidance section as things like MCode and other enhancements are required to make the weapon more resilient in GPS contested environments so you may not get it down to 5 digits $ at least in the US and given its production rate.