A specialized type of projectile available as an ordnance option for the VF-0 Phoenix GPU-9 35mm gun pod (circa 2008). The AHEAD projectile is a shell containing 152 heavy sub-projectiles (typically composed of tungsten or other dense material) and built with an electronic fuse. Based on a timer at the point of firing the AHEAD shell will release the sub-projectiles at a predetermined distance from the target. The sub-projectiles form a cloud of kinetic penetrators that greatly increase the odds of striking the target with multiple projectiles. The sub-projectile clouds are also an effective method for intercepting incoming missiles by either inflicting enough damage to prevent the incoming missile from striking its target or by destruction of the incoming missile itself.