DeltaLancer Research and Development Vehicle

DeltaLancer is a modular, 82.2mm calibre, all plastic, fin stabilised, gas launched research delivery vehicle with multiple fuzing options designed to facilitate remote delivery of a wide range of experimental payload configurations.


The projectile system was primarily designed to study: mid-flight payload deployment and/or dispersion effects; payload response to rapid acceleration conditions; payload response to controlled deceleration/impact conditions; assess impact, inertial and proximity fuze/sensor response; assess target response to attack by experimental kinetic penetrators; asses target response to complex multi-stage charge configurations and general study of terminal engagement dynamics.


Whilst the projectile system was designed to support research and development studies, the high strength and light weight construction provides a robust baseline for commercial projectile applications such as: avalanche control; ice management; maritime anti-piracy; fire suppression and rapid entry operations.


The DeltaLancer projectile system consists of three main parts:-

  1. Multi-function nose cone that can be fitted with instant or delay fuzing components, and/or the electronics necessary to manage and control payload functions.
  2. An extendable body with wide access to the front end to facilitate open cast loading or insertion of payload modules.
  3. A tail fin assembly that can be fitted with instant or delay fuzing components and/or the electronics necessary to manage and control payload functions.  The Fin can also be fitted with extending fin vanes to support, short range low velocity delivery modes.


Examples of these are described below.

Multifunction Nacelle - Impact Fuze

The photograph shows a sectioned view of the Multi-function Nacelle moulding fitted with an inertial impact fuze.  The inertial striker is secured by the black cross-pin that is retained by an inertial latch for safe handling.  When the projectile is fired the latch sets back and releases the cross-pin so it bore-rides until it can be ejected by the spring when the round leaves the barrel.  This provides a short arming distance to both protect the launcher and allow engagement of experimental targets at ranges of less than 50m.

Multifunction Nacelle - Proximity/Self Clearing Fuze

The photograph shows a sectioned view of the Multi-function Nacelle moulding fitted with an inertial set-back fuze designed to operate when the projectile starts to accelerate in the barrel.  The rearward inertial striker is secured by the red retaining screw to allow safe handling.  When the safety screw is removed, upon firing, the striker is free to impact and ignite the pyrotechnic delay fuze or the Shock Tube leading into a standard delay type NPED detonator.  This provides either a long (up to 40 second) delay, typically for a long range proximity burst or self clearance function or a short millisecond delay for dynamic dispersion studies mid way along our 100m range facility.

Payload Bay Extension Tubes

The photograph shows the DeltaLancer body fitted with extension tubes to increase the overall volume of the Payload Bay.

Standard DeltaLancer Fin Configuration

The photograph shows the standard Fin Assembly for the DeltaLancer projectile.  This can house either an inertial impact fuze, armed by rotation of the Turbine or a delay fuze or smoke tracer, activated by the firing pressure.

Deployable Fin Extensions – Folded Forward

The photograph shows a short range, low velocity, version of DeltaLancer with forward folded deployable vane extenders and an impact Nacelle fuze.  The fin extenders are designed to deploy and set about 1m from the launcher barrel.

Deployable Fin Extensions – Fully Extended

The deployable fin vanes are shown here in the fully deployed position.  Upon initial acceleration, an inertial catch releases the extensions so they bore-ride until the round exits the barrel. The vanes are fully deployed at about 1m from the muzzle and produce stable flight at about 20m from the muzzle.

Stable Flight Achieved at Short Range

At 40m the attitude (pitch and yaw) of the projectile is stable, i.e. the projectile’s axis is aligned stably with the shot line.  As the axis of the launcher is 600mm from the ground, the projectile is flying up towards the aim point, the target has, therefore, been tilted forwards to compensate and ensure a near normal impact. The projectile is travelling at 70m/s.

Critical to Have Stable Flight & Normal Attitude at Impact

The impact of the projectile is captured about 1 millisecond after target contact.  The forward charge has already detonated (brilliant white flash in previous frames - not shown) and the EFP projectile has formed, penetrated the target and transferred most of its energy to the concrete; this happens in about 120 microseconds.  Whilst the violent target response occurs after about 15 milliseconds, this is not visible as the entire target becomes enveloped by the flame front, and ensuing smoke and debris cloud. For this firing, the borehole formed enables a Follow Through Projectile (travelling at a little less than the impact velocity) to pass into the space behind the panel.

DeltaLancer Based Commercial Projectile Applications

Using the DeltaLancer research vehicle, Delta K has designed, tested and demonstrated projectile systems for the following applications.

Avalanche Control

Hand Charge, Gas Gun and Helibombing configurations described in the next web page. The Photograph shows Gas Gun projectile being prepared for firing in a Nitrogen gas launcher (Avalauncher).

Barrier and Wall Breaching

Stand-off Barrier breaching, wall breaching and structure attack with advanced Follow Through warhead mechanisms to deliver appropriate effects behind makeshift barriers, cavity brick and reinforced concrete buildings. The Photograph shows 300mm, double reinforced, concrete panel target.

Stand-off Maritime Anti-piracy

Long and short range stand-off delivery and proximity dispersion of PAVA and/or pyrotechnic flash/bang effects for maritime anti-piracy applications.  The photograph shows the  dynamic proximity burst and dispersion of 1kg of PAVA irritant substitute.

Stand-off Fire Suppression

Stand-off delivery of advanced fire suppression products deep into burning structures or advancing forest or scrubland flame fronts.  The photograph shows instant surface burst and dispersion of 1kg of micro-powder fire suppressant.