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U.S. Army Terminates The XM25 Air Burst System Project

XM25 (U.S. Army Materiel Command Photo)

The last time we heard something about the XM25 Air Burst System was that ATK Orbital was suing Heckler & Koch for US$27 million for failing to deliver to deliver 20 prototype units as part of a multi-million dollar contact last February 2017. ATK Orbital took in the German company as a subcontractor for the XM25 project over twenty years ago.

Now, in a blog post at’s Kit Up!, Matthew Cox writes that he found out last week the the U.S. has cancelled the XM25 CDTE (Counter-Defilade Target Engagement System ) project with ATK Orbital. That may mean over 20 years of research and money going down the drain.

According to his source, the contract was terminated last April 25, 2017 due to failure to deliver the 20 units that was specified in the contract, which is the same thing as the lawsuit that was filed by ATK Orbital against Heckler & Koch. Also, the contractor failed to provide an alternative solution that the Government can accept.

The XM25 is an air burst system that is designed to take out enemy combatants that are hiding behind cover. This fires 25mm grenades that are set to explode in mid-air or near the target with the operator of the weapon able to set the detonating distance which is transmitted to the grenade in the firing chamber. It is said to be effective to distance of 600 meters with a maximum range of 700 meters. If this weapon was able to achieve what it was meant to do, then it is way more effective than the M203 grenade launcher which has an effective range of 150 meters.

No one knows what the future of the XM25 will be though its fire control system is being considered for use for a launcher that shoots a 40mm air burst grenade, reports Cox in his news report, and that the U.S. Army are reassessing their requirements for such a system.

Even if the XM25 may just be buried as a real world weapon system, perhaps some airsoft manufacturer somewhere in the Far East might want to resurrect this as an airsoft gas grenade launcher. Airsoft players go for some unique airsoft systems to bring to the filed so who knows? The airsoft XM25 can be one.


Top Photo: XM25 (Photo by: Sgt. 1st Class Raymond Piper/U.S. Army Materiel Command)