Federal lands $41 million Pentagon contract for 5.56mm barrier ammo

Federal won a contract to supply up to $41 million worth of “5.56mm ball, carbine, barrier” ammunition to the Navy by 2023. (Photo: DoD)

The U.S. Navy on Tuesday awarded a contract set to run through 2023 for ammunition specifically designed to defeat barriers such as windshields and doors.

Anoka, Minnesota-based Federal Cartridge Co, a subsidiary of Vista Outdoors, secured the $41.1 million contract this week from the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division. The award is for 5.56mm ball ammo that was developed to still provide “sufficient terminal performance” after defeating what the military terms “intermediate barriers,” the kind of common obstacles encountered in modern combat in urban areas. The ammunition will be intended for use by both Navy and Marine Corps units.

In 2010, the Marines adopted “Cartridge, Caliber 5.56mm Ball, Carbine, Barrier” as the MK 318 MOD-0, to complement the M855 green tip round in service. The cartridge, manufactured by Federal’s ATK line, uses a 62-grain open tip boattail match bullet, or OTM, with a copper base and lead core to produce a “barrier blind” round that holds up better after penetrating through barriers such as auto windshields and doors.

Of the current award, Federal was allocated $219,981 that will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year, set to run through next September. The indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract is expected to be completed by November 2023.

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