You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

‘Punisher' gets its first battlefield tests

XM25 ‘performs flawlessly' in Afghanistan

Feb. 14, 2011 - 05:33AM   |   Last Updated: Feb. 14, 2011 - 05:33AM  |  
(PEO Soldier)
  • Filed Under


The XM-25 Counter Defilade Target Engagement System enables small units and individual soldiers to engage targets with a 25mm air-bursting capability for all operational environments.
Caliber: 25mm
13 pounds
Length: 29.5 inches
Magazine: 4 rounds
Optic: Fully integrated day/night, full-solution target acquisition/fire control
Construction: Lightweight material composites
Program status: In testing and development, with limited production expected in 2012


The XM25 has changed the battlefield with only 55 rounds, and earned a new name among soldiers. They call it "the Punisher."

Since its first contact Dec. 3, the XM25 has been in nine engagements with two units at different locations, officials said. Specifically, it has disrupted two insurgent attacks on observation posts, taken out two PKM machine gun positions and destroyed four ambush sites.

In one engagement, an enemy machine gunner was "so badly wounded or so freaking scared that he dropped [his] weapon" and ran, said Lt. Col. Christopher Lehner, Program Manager Individual Weapons.

There were no casualties among units carrying the XM25 in those nine engagements, Lehner said.

"No longer can the enemy shoot at American forces, then hide behind something," said Brig. Gen. Peter Fuller of Program Executive Office Soldier. "This is a revolutionary weapon. This is a game-changer."

The XM25 has a target acquisition system that calculates range with the push of a button. The data is transferred to an electronic fuse, enabling the 25mm round to explode over the target and rain shell fragments on the enemy.

All five prototypes were sent to Afghanistan in November. Officials are putting the final touches on data and analysis, but said Col. Douglas Tamilio, project manager for soldier weapons, said the weapons "performed flawlessly" and no maintenance issues showed.

Soldiers have been so pleased with the XM25 that they are carrying it as a primary weapon, and not bothering to bring an M4 as a secondary weapon, said Maj. Christopher Conley, who monitored the employment of XM25 on behalf of PEO Soldier.

Lehner said the tests revealed only one problem: The units didn't want to give the Punisher back.

That's not to say there isn't room to improve. "We've got to do something about the battery," Tamilio said. "It needs a longer life."

In addition, he is convinced that the effective area range can expand from 700 to 1,000 meters. The effective range for a point target is 500 meters.

There were no complaints about the 13-pound weight.

"If you can give them this kind of capability, they will handle the weight," Tamilio said.

The weapons were tested by two units at separate locations.

Tamilio recalled comments from one platoon leader, who said engagements that typically take 15 to 20 minutes were over in "a matter of minutes."

Officials plan to put the weapons with a third unit for the spring offensive, but officials must first determine how to cover the cost of rounds. Because they are hand built, the rounds run about $1,000 each. That cost will drop to $35 once a production line is started.

The XM25, which runs about $35,000 per copy, is about to enter engineering and manufacturing development.

Tamilio said efforts are underway to purchase an additional 36 weapons in 2012.

The XM25 is scheduled to begin low-rate initial production in late 2013. The plan is to buy 12,500 weapons one for each infantry squad or special forces team.

Answers by RallyPoint

Join trending discussions in the military's #1 professional community. See what members like yourself have to say from across the DoD.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.

This Week's Army Times

This Week's Army Times

CrossFit vs. unit PT
Troops will do the training plans in a $2.5 million study

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook