ATK, a producer of civilian and military ammo and arms, announced July 21 that it received international contracts totaling more than $220 million from U.S. allies for medium-caliber cannons and aftermarket support to help integrate the weapons and maintain them.
The cannon — the Bushmaster Chain Gun, or the M242 Bushmaster officially — is a 25mm chain-fed auto-cannon that’s typically seen on combat vehicles for sea, air and land used by U.S. forces, allies across the pond and NATO.
“Today, more than 16,000 of our cannons are installed on allied platforms worldwide,” said Dan Olson, vice president and general manager of ATK’s Armament Systems division.
The Bushmaster is an externally powered, chain driven, single-barrel weapon capable of semi-auto, burst and automatic firing. It’s called a “chain gun” because the firing system utilizes a roller chain that drives the bolt back and forth.
The standard rate of fire is 200 rounds per minute and it has an effective range of 3,000 meters, depending on the type of ammunition (high explosive, armor piercing, practice, etc), so troops tend to use it for oncoming convoys or to just keep bad guys at bay.
In addition to the gun itself, ATK will help integrate the platforms and train users on how to use them. As for who made the order — country and/or company — and how long the contract runs, ATK is not permitted to say, a company spokesman told Guns.com.
The Bushmaster Chain Gun will be manufactured at ATK Armament Systems’ factory in Mesa, Arizona.