Live-fire demo shows off a Army’s new 50mm cannon7
Watch: Army’s new 50mm cannon destroys a ridicule rivalry aim from hundreds of yards divided in a live-fire demo.
(Kingman, Ariz.) As a tiny turn of glow shot out of a finish of a new 50mm cannon, a cloud of fume filled a atmosphere and, in what seemed like reduction than one second, an blast of fume and glow broken a ridicule rivalry aim from hundreds of yards divided — on a other side of an Arizona dried valley.
The blast was precise, blazing and ruinous a steel aim in unbroken shots of 3 to 5 rounds. This blast effect, weapons developers explain, is precisely a vigilant for a Army’s new 50mm arms – to pierce a longer-range, more-lethal magnitude of firepower to middle distance armored car attack.
The live-fire demonstration, holding place during Northrop Grumman’s 2019 Bushmaster User Conference in Kingman, Ariz., was designed to serve prepared a arms for formation onto armored vehicles and, ultimately, send a new cannon to war. Military member from a US and as many as 25 partner nations collected to see a live-fire demo, that enclosed a horde of armored-vehicle weapons and technologies – such as a 50mm cannon.
The cannon conflict was partial of a live-fire proof dictated to pierce a 50mm Bushmaster cannon closer to formation onto a turret and Army armored fight car — to embody a service’s now-in-development Next-Generation Combat Vehicle slated to emerge in a mid-2020s.
The 50mm cannon, built by Northrop Grumman, is engineered to mix a accumulation of emerging, high-tech armored car conflict technologies into a singular complement — to embody modernized fire-control, programmed targeting sensors, next-gen ammunition, new mechanism estimate speed and longer-range middle distance conflict options.
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According to Northrop information, a new 50mm cannon, referred to as a initial XM913, can strike ranges some-more than twice as distant as a roughly 2-kilometer operation of a Bradley Fighting Vehicle’s existent M242 25mm cannon. “Dozens of countries have possibly relation or overmatch to a Bradley Fighting Vehicle’s M242,” a Northrop matter says. The 50mm is being engineered to residence this intensity disparity, by conflict ranges good over 4km.
Ammunition from a weapon’s demo.
The Army’s Combat Capabilities Development Command during Picatinny Arsenal and Northrop Grumman’s Armament Systems have partnered to engineer, exam and broach a new cannon While called a 50mm cannon, a new arms represents a new, high tech iteration of Chain Gun record initial grown as a high-speed 30mm gun for a Apache Attack helicopter. One comparison Northrop weapons developer, Lisa Brown, Vice President of Guns, Northrop Armament Systems, explained this technical arena as something bringing “Apache malignancy to land-based platforms.”
The expansion of Chain Gun conflict record has left by several poignant steps. The Apache 30mm gun, called a M230, provides an initial technological substructure from that successive land-fire applications have emerged – such as a existent vehicle-mounted 30mm Bushmaster Chain Gun and a new 50mm Chain Gun, or cannon. A Chain Gun is described as a form of auto-cannon that uses “an outmost source of appetite to cycle a arms rather than ludicrous appetite from a cartridge,” regulating a continual loop.
The 50mm cannon incorporates adaptations of a strange Apache 30mm Chain Gun technology, that fires a fast-paced belt of “linked” ammunition. While versed with targeting record for sold targets, a Apache 30mm can mostly be used as rather of an “area” arms to sweeping an area with dispersed, mobile rapid-fire attack. Such a tactic can both lay down suppressive fire, enabling belligerent battalion to scheme or itself directly destroy small, relocating belligerent targets.
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The new 50mm evolves Chain Gun systems and makes use of a “linkless” ammunition technology. This can delayed down a gait of fire, from 600 to 200 shots per notation in some cases, bringing pointing and aloft levels of drop on heavier rivalry targets, Brown explained.
The arms represents a new, high tech iteration of Chain Gun record (Kris Osborn)
“This is an instrumentation of a ancestral Bushmaster. With Chain Gun ammo we traditionally have a couple belt….now we have ammo boxes that feed a ammunition,” John McCollum, Northrop’s Director of Business Development, Bushmaster Cannons, told Warrior Maven in an interview.
In growth for roughly 8 years, a 50mm cannon represents a new technical bid to operative what competence be called a “middle ground” kind of conflict cannon; it contingency not usually pierce some-more firepower, range, pointing and malignancy to armored fight though also confederate into a kinds of expeditionary destiny armored vehicles sought after by a Army. In effect, a new cannon represents a new globe of conflict options, camp itself as a new conflict choice positioned between a 30mm sequence gun such as that dismissed by a Stryker — and a heavier 120mm cannon dismissed by an Abrams tank.
Therefore, a new 50mm criterion aligns with a Army destiny armored fight car devise that aims to both strap a malignancy and survivability afforded by new technologies, nonetheless combine it with rare levels of maneuverability, speed and deployability.
This vital emphasis, involving a unpractical and technical balancing act, was explained by Maj. Gen. Brian Cummings, Program Executive Officer, Ground Combat Systems, in an talk with Warrior Maven a few months ago. The NGCV is being built to be upgradeable so as to accommodate new technologies as they emerge to boost firepower and targeting while also obscure weight and augmenting fight mobility. The NGCV, Cummings explained, is being engineered with this sold plea in mind so that it can quick be prepared for near-term fights and also prepared for a “war after next,” as he put it. The thought is to welcome a developmental arena designed to optimize continued technological creation when it comes to achieving an ideal change between survivability and mobility.
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The plea of merging modernized survivability with terrain maneuverability has been a executive concentration for Army developers. To some extent, a success hinges on a horde of “still in development” technologies, Army module managers say. Some of these embody lighter-weight armor composites charity a same or softened insurance as stream complicated vehicles as good as worldly networking, mechanism estimate and integrated long-range sensors. The 50mm, developers explained, is engineered to confederate with these kinds of systems.
Other technologies approaching to confederate with a 50mm embody Active Protection Systems and several iterations of AI and EW strategy designed to jam or invalidate rivalry communications and incoming weapons. The Army’s new NGCV is also called an “optionally manned vehicle,” a nomination that raises a probability of carrying a forward-positioned fatal armored car means to control conflict and reconnoitering missions though fixation tellurian crews during risk. In this scenario, fast, lighter-weight vehicles – armed with estimable firepower such as a 50mm cannon – could pierce a new turn of conflict possibilities.
Interestingly, a plea of merging mobility with insurance and integrated sensors is taken adult in a 2017 letter in the Defence Science Journal.
The essay, called “Armored Fighting Vehicles – Future Perspective.” refers to destiny armored car pattern as “a good challenge, deliberation a presentation of several new technologies and a need to effectively confederate it in a vehicle. A priori pattern indication to weigh a tactical mobility, and insurance mandate with honour to weight and volume of several systems can lead to a compress fighting vehicle.”
The essay, it seems clear, refers to a formidable charge of maximizing firepower on what might need to be a smaller car means to grasp a claim volume of maneuverability, high-tech computing, sensor formation and speed. This idea of consistent clearly paradoxical attributes, though compromising survivability, is accurately what a Army has in mind.
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The new 50mm privately built to assistance residence this plea by seeking to optimize vast firepower with a kind of expeditionary car envisioned for a NGCV. The need, according to Army developers, is to operative armored fight vehicles faster and some-more simply deployable than vast platforms like an Abrams tank, that can during times have mobility stipulations due to a weight. A 70-ton Abrams, for instance, might have difficulty channel certain bridges or gripping gait with some quick relocating battalion units.
Perhaps of biggest significance, a 50mm adds a new apartment of some-more fatal ammunition options, bringing a vastly increasing pouch of fight effects. The new gun has a full apartment of ammunition, including high-explosive rounds, airburst rounds and armor-piercing rounds; it is a same as a stream 30 173 rounds dismissed by a Stryker, nonetheless with additional “reach and lethality.” The ammunition, a vital importance of a 50mm’s developmental trajectory, will embody both “airburst” ammunition and a “proximity” fuse.
“When a ammunition record roadmap is complete, we wish to pierce vicinity fusing to a weapon…and potentially beam a ammunition …. that will let us get out to some extended ranges and strike targets we typically can't strike with approach glow systems,” Dan Olson clamp boss of Northrop Grumman’s Armament Systems Business Unit, told Warrior Maven in an interview.
A vicinity fuse, for instance, is an existent record now being blending to a 50mm, Northrop weapons developers say; it will capacitate a turn to raze in a area of a aim instead of aggressive in a some-more slight or linear way. This kind of blast outcome brings a probability to sunder lethal, bomb materials opposite a wider area and destroy opposite kinds of targets such as groups of on-the-move rivalry fighters.
Olson explained that a 50mm, in mixed with a airburst rounds, will pierce a new ability to destroy targets in “defilade” or differently not understandable to rivalry due to an deterrent such as a stone or wall. By bursting during a fixed indicate above or nearby a dictated target, airburst rounds sunder fatal bomb element such that it can destroy an rivalry stealing behind a rock. While airburst rounds already exist, and can, for instance, be dismissed from a Stryker-mounted 30mm gun, a Army and Northrop are bettering a record to a 50mm.
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“Currently in a atmosphere detonate munition we can conceal targets out in a open to about 2,200 meters. With a 50mm gun, we can conceal targets out to 4,200 meters. This is jump forward record compared to what we now have with 25 and 30mm guns,” Brown said.
The existent 30mm cannon can not usually arm a Stryker, though lightweight variants can also mountain onto thinner-skinned vehicles such as a Humvee or even a pick-up truck. This 50mm cannon malignancy effect, as described by Olson, goes over this by use of a incomparable cannon and warhead means to destroy heavier targets.
Significantly, mixed ammunition effects for a new 50mm cannon exist within a same, singular form cause – size, figure and ubiquitous pattern – bringing several conflict options into a singular distance round. This advantage was expected in another section of a Defence Science Journal essay, that states “it is to be remarkable that as a accumulation in ammunition increases due to goal requirements, a measure need to be same to grasp unity in configuration.”
This importance on ammunition pattern is utterly significant, according to Northrop information, that explains that a Bradley’s stream 25mm turn is “not gainful for a growth of modernized ammunition, including “Proximity Sensing ammunition.”
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Following some additional live-fire contrast to labour some of a mechanics for a weapon, a Army and Northrop devise to work with turret manufacturers to mountain a arms onto armored fighting vehicles for serve development. McCollum pronounced that a gun, as a heavier various of a famous Bushmaster sequence gun family, should not be too formidable to integrate.
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