MESQUITE, Texas—Modernizing Munitions: U.S. Expands Shell Production

MESQUITE, Texas—U.S. Expands Shell Production

In a strategic move amid global tensions, U.S. Army Secretary Christine Wormuth visited a cutting-edge munitions plant in Mesquite, Texas. The facility, equipped with advanced machinery from Turkish firm Repkon, underscores America’s efforts to ramp up artillery shell production for domestic use and international allies.

Addressing Concerns

During her visit, Wormuth queried Ibrahim Kulekci, CEO of Repkon, about technology transfers, specifically concerning Russia. Kulekci assured her that Repkon did not supply similar technology to Russia, a crucial reassurance amid geopolitical sensitivities.

Amid geopolitical tensions, Wormuth’s query to Kulekci underscores the critical need for transparent technology transfers, according to Barron’s Print Edition.

Meeting Growing Demand

Prompted by heightened demand following the conflict in Ukraine, the Pentagon has invested $6 billion to modernize aging World War II-era factories. General Dynamics, backed by a $1 billion contract, leads the charge with state-of-the-art machines aimed at boosting efficiency.

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Rapid Expansion Plans

Before the conflict, the U.S. produced 14,000 155mm shells monthly. Plans aim to increase production to 100,000 per month by late 2025. Mesquite facility, launching its first of three lines soon, highlights America’s efforts to secure defense manufacturing domestically.

Global Collaboration

Despite strained U.S.-Turkey relations, Turkey remains pivotal in global defense supply chains due to critical machinery supply. Companies such as Kuka, now part of China’s Midea, contribute significantly to this interconnected network. Their equipment plays a crucial role in global defense infrastructure.

Ensuring Readiness

With a focus on self-sufficiency, the Pentagon aims to fortify its defense-industrial base, ensuring a robust supply of munitions like artillery shells. Enhanced production capabilities promise improved precision and reliability crucial for military readiness.

Looking Ahead

As global tensions persist, investments in domestic munitions production remain a strategic priority for the U.S., fostering both national security and economic resilience in uncertain times.

This visit by Secretary Wormuth underscores America’s commitment to enhancing its defense capabilities, adapting to new global realities while reinforcing partnerships critical to national defense.

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