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Encyclopedia > Ammunition
This article is largely based on the article in the out-of-copyright 11th edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica, which was produced in 1911. It should be brought up to date to reflect subsequent history or scholarship (including the references, if any). When you have completed the review, replace this notice with a simple note on this article's talk page. Thanks!


Ammunition, often referred to as ammo, is a generic term meaning (the assembly of) a projectile and its propellant. It is derived through French from the Latin munire (to provide). See also munition. Image File history File links Current_event_marker. ... Encyclopædia Britannica, the 11th edition The 11th edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica (1910–1911) is perhaps the most famous edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. ... Year 1911 (MCMXI) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Saturday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ... A projectile is any object sent through space by the application of a force. ... Smokeless powder Gunpowder is a pyrotechnic composition, an explosive mixture that burns rapidly, producing volumes of hot gas which can be used as a propellant in firearms and fireworks. ... For other uses, see Latin (disambiguation). ... Munition is often defined as a synonyn for ammunition. ...

Contents

Glossary

  • Cartridges, like those fired from rifles, handguns and machine guns (collectively known as small arms), are called Small Arms Ammunition (SAA).
  • A "round" is a single unit of ammunition; for a modern small arms cartridge this is the combination of bullet, propellant, primer and cartridge case in a single unit.
  • Large caliber guns often fire explosive-filled projectiles known as shells, non-explosive projectiles may be practice natures or types of shot(see artillery).
  • Large numbers of small projectiles intended to be fired all at once in a single discharge are also called shot; hand-held guns designed for this type of ammunition are generally known as shotguns.
  • Duds are explosive filled ordnance that fails to function as intended. A cartridge that fails to fire in the weapon is known as a misfire. Dud ammunition is regarded as highly dangerous and also known as UXO, and most safety officials inform civilians to report finding of any large-bore duds to the local police or military.

This article does not cite any references or sources. ... A Browning 9 millimeter Hi-Power Ordnance pistol of the French Navy, 19th century, using a Percussion cap mechanism Derringers were small and easily hidden. ... This article is about firearms projectiles. ... “Calibre” redirects here. ... It has been suggested that Last Call Poker be merged into this article or section. ... A shell is a payload-carrying projectile, which, as opposed to a bullet, contains an explosive or other filling, though modern usage includes large solid projectiles previously termed shot (AP, APCR, APCNR, APDS, APFSDS and Proof shot). ... For other uses, see Artillery (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Shotgun (disambiguation). ... A dud is an ammunition round or explosive that fails to fire or detonate, respectively. ... Unexploded ordnance (or UXOs/UXBs) are explosive weapons (bombs, shells, grenades, land mines, naval mines, etc. ...

General information

The design of the ammunition is determined by its purpose; anti-personnel ammunition is often designed to break up or tumble inside the target, in order to maximize the damage done. Anti-personnel shells contain shrapnel and are designed to explode in mid-air, so its fragments will spread over a large area. Armor-piercing ammunition tends to be hard, sharp, and narrow, often with lubrication. Incendiary projectiles include a material such as white phosphorus which burns fiercely. Tracer ammunition emits light as it travels, allowing the gunner to see the path of bullets in flight while using a machine gun. It has been suggested that Fragmentation (weaponry) be merged into this article or section. ... Lubrication occurs when opposing surfaces are completely separated by a lubricant film. ... General Name, symbol, number phosphorus, P, 15 Chemical series nonmetals Group, period, block 15, 3, p Appearance waxy white/ red/ black/ colorless Standard atomic weight 30. ... Tracers from M16 rifles on U.S. Army firing range Tracer ammunition (tracers) use special bullets that are modified to accept a small pyrotechnic charge in their base. ... A machine gun is a fully-automatic firearm that is capable of firing bullets in rapid succession. ...


Popular types of military rifle and machine-gun ammunition include the 5.45 mm, 5.56 mm, and 7.62 mm. Main battle tanks use KE-penetrators to combat other MBTs and armoured fighting vehicles, and HE-Frag (High Explosive-Fragmentation) for soft targets such as infantry. A . ... The Soviet 5. ... U.S. Military 5. ... There are many cartridges which use 7. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... A kinetic energy penetrator, long-rod penetrator, or APFSDS (Armour Piercing Fin Stabilized Discarding Sabot) is a type of ammunition which, like a bullet, does not contain explosives, but uses kinetic energy to penetrate the target. ... An armoured fighting vehicle (AFV) is a military vehicle, protected by armour and armed with weapons. ... A military term refering to an un-armoured or otherwise unprotected object to be destroyed. ... Infantry of the Royal Irish Rifles during the Battle of the Somme in World War I. Infantry are soldiers who fight primarily on foot with small arms in organized military units, though they may be transported to the battlefield by horses, ships, automobiles, skis, bicycles, or other means. ...


Ammunition, particularly that of small arms, is specified by an extremely wide range of designations derived from metric and English measurements, commercial firms' private systems, and the different requirements of armies of different countries. German firms in the late twentieth century have decided to make "all-metric" ammunition, a refinement of existing designs.


Match-grade ammunition is of exceptional quality and consistency, intended for target-shooting competition. Match grade refers to something suitable for a match, that is, able to compete with others. ...


The components of ammunition intended for rifles and munitions may be divided into these categories: Munition is often defined as a synonyn for ammunition. ...

This article is concerned solely with chemical explosives. ... Smokeless powder Gunpowder is a pyrotechnic composition, an explosive mixture that burns rapidly, producing volumes of hot gas which can be used as a propellant in firearms and fireworks. ... A projectile is any object sent through space by the application of a force. ... Rimmed, centerfire . ...

Storage

Historical (circa World War I)

These general conditions apply to the storage of ammunition in fortresses. Here the positions for the magazine and ammunition stores are so chosen as to afford the best means of protection from an enemy's fire. Huge earth parapets cover these buildings, which are further strengthened, where possible, by traverses protecting the entrances. For the purpose of filling, emptying, and examining cannon cartridges and shell, a laboratory is generally provided at some distance from the magazine. The various stores for explosives are classified into those under magazine conditions (such as magazines, laboratories, and cartridge stores) and those with which these restrictions need not be observed (such as ammunition and shell stores). The interior walls of a magazine are lined, and the floors laid so that there may be no exposed iron or steel. At the entrance, there is a lobby or barrier, inside which persons about to enter the magazine change their clothes for a special suit, and their boots for a pair made without nails. In an ammunition or shell store these precautions need not be taken except where the shell store and the adjacent cartridge store have a common entrance; persons entering may do so in their ordinary clothes. A large work may have a main magazine and several subsidiary magazines, from which the stock of cartridges is renewed in the cartridge stores attached to each group of guns or in the expense cartridge stores and cartridge recesses. The same applies to main ammunition stores which supply the shell stores, expense stores, and recesses. Fortifications (Latin fortis, strong, and facere, to make) are military constructions designed for defensive warfare. ... An ammunition dump, or ammo dump, is a military storage facility for live ammunition and explosives. ... A parapet consists of a dwarf wall along the edge of a roof, or round a lead flat, terrace walk, etc. ... In fortification, a traverse is a mass of earth or other material employed to protect troops against enfilade. ... For other uses, see Cannon (disambiguation). ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... For other uses, see Iron (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Steel (disambiguation). ...


The supply of ammunition are either for guns forming the movable armament or for guns placed in permanent positions. The movable armament will consist of guns and howitzers of small and medium caliber, and it is necessary to arrange suitable expense cartridge stores and shell stores close to the available positions. They can generally be constructed to form part of the permanent work in the projected face of traverses or other strong formations, and should be arranged for a twenty-four hour supply of ammunition. These stores are refilled from the main magazine every night under cover of darkness. Light railways join the various positions. The guns mounted in permanent emplacements are divided into groups of two or three guns each, and usually each group will require but one calibre of ammunition. A cartridge store, shell store and a general store, all well ventilated, are arranged for the especial service of such a group of guns. In the cartridge store the cylinders containing the cartridges are so placed and labeled that the required charge, whether reduced or full, can be immediately selected. It has been suggested that Last Call Poker be merged into this article or section. ... 19th century 12 pounder (5 kg) mountain howitzer displayed by the National Park Service at Fort Laramie in Wyoming, USA A howitzer is a type of artillery piece that is characterized by a relatively short barrel and the use of comparatively small explosive charges to propel projectiles at trajectories with...


In the shell store the common shell are separated from the armour-piercing or shrapnel. Each nature of projectile is painted in a distinctive manner to render identification easy. The fuzes and tubes are placed in the general store with the tools and accessories belonging to the guns. The gun group is distinguished by some letter and the guns of the group by numerals; thus A/1 is number one gun of group A. The magazine and shell stores are also indicated by the group letter, and so that mistakes, even by those unaccustomed to the fort, may be avoided, the passages are pointed out by finger posts and direction boards. For the immediate service of each gun, a few cartridges and projectiles are stored in small receptacles (called cartridge and shell recesses respectively) built in the parapet as near the gun position as practicable. In some cases, a limited number of projectiles may be placed close underneath the parapet if this is conveniently situated near the breech of the gun and not exposed to hostile fire. It has been suggested that Fragmentation (weaponry) be merged into this article or section. ... Breech from Russian 122 mm M1910 howitzer, modified and combined with 105mm H37 howitzer barrel An interrupted screw style breech plug in the M109 howitzer An animation showing the loading cycle for a large naval breech-loader. ...


In order to supply the ammunition sufficiently rapidly for the efficient service of modern guns, hydraulic, electric, or hand-power, hoists are employed to raise the cartridges and shell from the cartridge store and shell store to the gun floor, whence they are transferred to a derrick or loading tray attached to the mounting for loading the gun. Hydraulics is a branch of science and engineering concerned with the use of liquids to perform mechanical tasks. ... The article on electrical energy is located elsewhere. ... Builders hoist, with small petrol engine A hoist is a device used for lifting or lowering a load by means of a drum or lift-wheel around which rope or chain wraps. ...


Projectiles for BL guns above 6 inch (152 mm) calibre are stored in shell stores ready filled and fuzed standing on their bases, except shrapnel and high-explosive shell, which are fuzed only when about to be used. Smaller sizes of shells are laid on their sides in layers, each layer pointing in the opposite direction to the one below to prevent injury to the driving bands. Cartridges are stored in brass corrugated cases or in zinc cylinders. The corrugated cases are stacked in layers in the magazine with the mouth of the case towards a passage between the stacks, so that it can be opened and the cartridges removed and transferred to a leather case when required for transport to the gun. Cylinders are stacked, when possible, vertically one above the other. The charges are sent to the gun in these cylinders, and provision is made for the rapid removal of the empty cylinders. This article explains certain terms used for British ordnance during World War II. BL Bl stood for Breech loading. The shell was loaded and then the propellant after in cloth bags. ... Injury is damage or harm caused to the structure or function of the body caused by an outside agent or force, which may be physical or chemical. ... “Brazen” redirects here. ... General Name, symbol, number zinc, Zn, 30 Chemical series transition metals Group, period, block 12, 4, d Appearance bluish pale gray Standard atomic weight 65. ...


The number and nature of rounds allotted to any fortress depends on questions of policy and location, the degrees of resistance the nature of the works and personnel could reasonably be expected to give, and finally on the nature of the armament. That is to say, for guns of large calibre three hundred to four hundred rounds per gun might be sufficient, while for light QF guns it might amount to one thousand or more rounds per gun. Look up policy in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Modern era

Modern ammunition includes not only shells for tube artillery and mortars, but increasingly aircraft-delivered bombs, smart bombs, rockets and other explosive-bearing projectiles. The destructive power and lethality of these systems is difficult to appreciate. A single cluster bomb, deliverable by any of the above systems, can sow grenade-sized bomblets across a 100 yard (90 m) football-sized field in sufficient density to kill any persons present, even in trenches and wearing body armor. US soldier loading a M224 60-mm mortar. ... This article is about explosive devices. ... BOLT-117 laser guided bomb Precision-guided munitions (smart munitions or smart bombs) are self-guiding weapons intended to maximize damage to the target while minimizing collateral damage. Because the damage effects of an explosive weapon scale as a power law with distance, quite modest improvements in accuracy (and hence... US Smarties (by Ce De Candy) US Smarties (by Ce De Candy) In the United States, Smarties are a type of artificially fruit-flavored candy produced by Ce De Candy. ... A US B-1 Lancer releasing its payload of cluster bombs Cluster Munitions or Cluster Bombs are air-dropped or ground-launched munitions that eject a number of smaller submunitions (bomblets). The most common types are intended to kill enemy personnel and destroy vehicles. ... Look up Football in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


See ammo dump for discussion of modern ammunition storage facilities. An ammunition dump, or ammo dump, is a military storage facility for live ammunition and explosives. ...


Supply of ammunition in the field

With every successive improvement in military arms there has necessarily been a corresponding modification in the method of supplying ammunition and in the quantity required to be supplied. When hand-to-hand weapons were the principal implements of battle, there was no such need. But in the Middle Ages, the archers and crossbowmen had to replenish the shafts and bolts expended in action, and during a siege, stone bullets of great size, as well as heavy arrows, were freely used. The missiles of those days were however interchangeable, and at the battle of Towton (1461), part of the War of the Roses, the commander of the Yorkist archers induced the enemy to fire arrows in order to obtain them for firing back. This interchangeability of war material was even possible for many centuries after the invention of firearms. At the battle of Liegnitz (1760) a general officer was specially commissioned by Frederick the Great to pack up and send away, for Prussian use, all the muskets and ammunition left on the field of battle by the defeated Austrians. The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ... Archery is the practice of using a bow to shoot arrows. ... A siege is a military blockade of a city or fortress with the intent of conquering by force or attrition, often accompanied by an assault. ... “Rock” redirects here. ... An arrow is a pointed projectile that is shot with a bow. ... For other uses, see Missile (disambiguation). ... The Battle of Towton in the Wars of the Roses was the bloodiest ever fought on British soil, with casualties believed to have been in excess of 20,000 (perhaps as many as 30,000) men. ... The War or Wars of the Roses may refer to, or have been referred to by: The historical Wars of the Roses, the civil war that took place in Mediæval Britain between the House of York and the House of Lancaster. ... York shown within England Coordinates: , Sovereign state Constituent country Region Yorkshire and the Humber Ceremonial county North Yorkshire Admin HQ York City Centre Founded 71 City Status 71 Government  - Type Unitary Authority, City  - Governing body City of York Council  - Leadership: Leader & Executive  - Executive: Liberal Democrat  - MPs: Hugh Bayley (L) John... Two military engagements are known as the Battle of Liegnitz: The Battle of Legnica (1241) was a battle in the Mongol invasion of Europe The Battle of Liegnitz (1760) was a battle in the Seven Years War This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages... Frederick the Great Frederick II of Prussia (Friedrich der Große, Frederick the Great, January 24, 1712 – August 17, 1786) was the Hohenzollern king of Prussia 1740–86. ... For other uses, see Prussia (disambiguation). ... Muskets and bayonets aboard the frigate Grand Turk. ...


Captured material is utilized whenever possible at the present time. In the First Sino-Japanese War, the Japanese went so far as to prepare beforehand spare parts for the Chinese guns they expected to capture. It is rare to find a modern army trusting to captures for arms and ammunition; almost the only instance of the practice is that of the Chilean Civil War (1891) in which the army of one belligerent was almost totally dependent upon this means of replenishing stores of arms and cartridges. What was possible with weapons of comparatively rough make is no longer to be thought of in the case of modern arms. Combatants Qing Empire (China) Empire of Japan Commanders Li Hongzhang Yamagata Aritomo Strength 630,000 men Beiyang Army Beiyang Fleet 240,000 men Imperial Japanese Army Imperial Japanese Navy Casualties 35,000 dead or wounded 13,823 dead, 3,973 wounded The First Sino-Japanese War (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese... The Chilean Civil War of 1891 was an armed conflict between forces supporting Congress and forces supporting the sitting President, José Manuel Balmaceda. ...


The Lee-Metford bullet of 0.303 inch (7.7 mm) diameter can scarcely be used in a rifle of smaller caliber, and in general the minute accuracy of parts in modern weapons makes interchangeability almost impossible. Further, owing to the rapidity with which, in modern arms, ammunition is expended, and the fact that, as battles are fought at longer ranges than formerly, more shots have to be fired in order to inflict heavy losses, it is necessary that the reserves of ammunition should be as close as possible to the troops who have to use them. This was always the case even with the older firearms, as, owing to the great weight of the ammunition, the soldier could only carry a few rounds. Nevertheless it is only within the past seventy years that there has grown up the elaborate system of ammunition supply which now prevails in all regularly organized armies. That which is described in the present article is the British, as laid down in the official Combined Training (1905) and other manuals. The new system designed for stronger divisions, and others, vary only in details and nomenclature. The Lee-Metford rifle was a breech-loading British army service rifle, combining James Paris Lees rear-locking bolt system and ten-round magazine with a seven groove rifled barrel designed by William Ellis Metford. ... In the fields of science, engineering, industry and statistics, accuracy is the degree of conformity of a measured or calculated quantity to its actual (true) value. ... This article is about a military rank. ...


Ammunition for infantry

Ammunition for infantry refers to the ammunition carried by a typical foot (infantry) soldier. Someone serving in the infantry generally carries, in pouches, bandoliers, etc., one hundred rounds of small-arms ammunition (S.A.A.), and it is usual to supplement this, when an action is imminent, from the regimental reserve (see below). Like any trade, the proper tools are necessary for the task at hand. Infantry need to be provided with the weapons and ammunition to deal with the expected threat, be it another foot soldier, a mounted warrior, armoured vehicle or aircraft. Infantry of the Royal Irish Rifles during the Battle of the Somme in World War I. Infantry are soldiers who fight primarily on foot with small arms in organized military units, though they may be transported to the battlefield by horses, ships, automobiles, skis, bicycles, or other means. ... This article is about a military rank. ... A bandolier is a pocketed belt for holding ammunition. ... Small arms captured in Fallujah, Iraq by the US Marine Corps in 2004 The term small arms generally describes any number of smaller infantry weapons, such as firearms that an individual soldier can carry. ...


History

Every reduction in the caliber (size) of the rifle's ammunition means an increase in the number of rounds carried. One hundred rounds of the Martini-Henry ammunition weighed 10 pounds 10 ounces (4.8 kg); the same weight gives 155 rounds of 0.303 in (7.7 mm) ammunition and at 0.256 in (6.5 mm) the number of rounds is still greater. The regimental reserves were historically carried in six S.A.A. carts and on eight pack animals. The six carts are distributed, one as reserve to the machine gun, three as reserve to the battalion itself, and two as part of the brigade reserve, which consists therefore of eight carts. The brigade reserve communicates directly with the brigade ammunition columns of the artillery (see below). The eight pack animals follow the eight companies of their battalion. These, with two out of the three battalion carts, endeavour to keep close to the firing line, the remaining cart being with the reserve companies. Men also are employed as carriers, and this duty is so onerous that picked men only are detailed. Gallantry displayed in bringing up ammunition is considered indeed to justify special rewards. The amount of S.A.A. in regimental charge is 100 rounds in the possession of each soldier, 2000 to 2200 on each pack animal, and 16,000 to 17,600 in each of four carts, with, in addition, about 4000 rounds with the machine gun and 16,000 more in the fifth cart. “Calibre” redirects here. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... The Martini-Henry (also known as the Peabody-Martini-Henry) was a breech-loading lever-actuated rifle adopted by the British, combining an action worked on by Friedrich von Martini (based on the Peabody rifle developed by Henry Peabody), with the rifled barrel designed by Scotsman Alexander Henry. ... A pack animal is a beast of burden used by humans as means of transporting materials by attaching them so their weigh bears on the animals back; the term may be applied to either an individual animal or a species so employed. ... For other uses, see Artillery (disambiguation). ...


Current small arms ammunition

Currently, every army of an internationally recognized country (except those who rely on others for defense, such as Andorra, and those that do not have a true army, such as the Vatican City) has adopted assault rifles as the main infantry weapon. The AK-47 is the worlds most common assault rifle. ...


In western (NATO) forces, the 7.62 mm NATO round has been mostly replaced by the lighter 5.56 mm NATO round, which is better suited for automatic fire than the larger round and allows each soldier to carry more ammunition. The larger caliber ammunition is still retained where range and weight of shot is important, e.g. machine guns and sniper rifles. This article is about the military alliance. ... NATO 7. ... U.S. Military 5. ... “Calibre” redirects here. ... A machine gun is a fully-automatic firearm that is capable of firing bullets in rapid succession. ... The M40, United States Army standard-issue sniper rifle. ...


Other nations, especially forces with former ties to the Soviet Union tend to use rifles related to or developed from the AK-47 with similar sized rounds to the NATO ones. In 7.62x39 mm and 5.45 x 39 mm for assault rifles and 7.62x54R for sniper rifles and light machine guns. Avtomat Kalashnikova model 1947 g. ... This article or section should include material from Soviet M1943 The Soviet 7. ... The Soviet 5. ... The 7. ...


Anti-tank

The tank made horse mounted cavalry obsolete and while an infantryman could deal with a horse-borne enemy new weapons were needed to damage a tank or other vehicle or penetrate and wound the crew. The first anti-tank weapons given to infantry were based on small arms, for example the anti-tank rifle. As even the lighter designs of tank carried more armour the limit of a man-portable rifle that could fire a round with sufficient kinetic energy to penetrate the armour was reached. The introduction of the shaped charge warhead gave the infantry a weapon that used chemical energy rather than kinetic to beat the armour and in a focussed way which made them more effective than large grenades. When propelled by a rocket, the shaped charge gained range as well. Weapons such as the Bazooka or Panzerfaust were never small but they were suitable for infantry use - though they often had to be used at close range where they could be aimed accurately at the vehicles weak points. Post World War 2, the advent of the missile delivered both great range and accuracy and provided infantry with a weapon that could reliably destroy the heaviest tanks at long distances. This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Sectioned HEAT round with the inner shaped charge visible A shaped charge is an explosive charge shaped to focus the effect of the explosives energy. ...


Anti-aircraft

Today's infantryman can deploy sophisticated multi-spectral man-portable surface-to-air missiles equipped with the ability to reject decoys and defeat counter-measures. In Somalia it was demonstrated that slow moving/stationary aircraft at low altitudes could be defeated with unguided anti-armour infantry weapons. It is also true that aircraft are relatively delicate machines, filled with highly flammable fuel, and since their first usage in World War I a plane can be brought down by single bullet striking something vital. The main weaknesses of ammunition provided to infantry to deal with aircraft are limited range and small warheads, both due to the necessity that such weapons remain portable by men on foot. The premier SAM for infantry is the FIM-92 Stinger MANPADS (Man Portable Air Defence System), provided as an all-up round in a canister it is attached to a launcher unit and is ready to expend. Numerous other missiles in this class exist from different nations of origin. Infantry machine guns and rifles may improve their ability against aircraft by utilising tracer ammunition, to allow the aimer to better gauge the lead aim necessary to strike his target. Weapons developed primarily for anti-tank roles can add proximity fusing to increase the probability of a kill by having the warhead detonate nearby the target without having to make contact. The FIM-92 Stinger is a man portable infra-red homing surface-to-air missile developed in the United States and used by all the US armed services, with whom it entered service in 1981. ...


Large weapon ammunition

Main article: Shell (projectile)

Modern artillery ammunition is generally of two types: separate loading and semi-fixed. Semi-fixed ammunition (rounds) appear in the form of a projectile mated with a cartridge case which contains the propellant and they resemble small arms rounds. A shell is a payload-carrying projectile, which, as opposed to a bullet, contains an explosive or other filling, though modern usage includes large solid projectiles previously termed shot (AP, APCR, APCNR, APDS, APFSDS and Proof shot). ... A projectile is any object sent through space by the application of a force. ... A propellant is a material that is used to move an object by applying a motive force. ...


The canister is outfitted with a primer on its base which fires upon contact from the firing pin. Gunpowder, precision machined to burn evenly, is contained inside of cloth bags that are numbered. US/NATO 105 mm howitzers use semi-fixed ammunition, containing seven powder bags referred to as increments or charges. Putting the powder in bags allows the howitzer crew to remove the increments when firing at closer targets. The unused increments are disposed of by burning in a powder pit at a safe distance from the guns. Smokeless powder Gunpowder is a pyrotechnic composition, an explosive mixture that burns rapidly, producing volumes of hot gas which can be used as a propellant in firearms and fireworks. ...


Above a certain size, semi-fixed rounds are impracticable; the weight of the whole assembly is too much to be carried effectively. In this case separate loading ammunition is used: the projectile and propelling charge are supplied and loaded separately. The projectile is rammed home in the chamber, the powder charge(s) are loaded (usually by hand), then the breech is closed and the primer is inserted into the primer holder on the back the breech. Separate loading ammunition is typically used on 155 mm and larger howitzers. Several propellant types are available for 155 mm howitzer.


All normal projectiles arrive at the weapon with a plug in the fuze well on the nose of the projectile. Using a special fuze wrench, the plug is unscrewed and a fuze is screwed in. The decision as to which type of fuze to use is made by the fire direction center and carried out by the gun crew. In an explosive, pyrotechnic device or military munition, a fuse (or fuze) is the part of the device that initiates function. ...


The armaments fitted to early tanks were contemporary field or naval artillery pieces and used the same ammunition. When tank versus tank combat became more important, the trend became that anti-aircraft artillery pieces (designed to fire high velocity shells to altitude) were often adapted to tank use where a gun specifically made for the vehicle was not available. As the armour applied to tanks increased, ammunition for tank use paralleled that of anti-tank guns. Current tank gun ammunition is a single fixed round ("shell" and charge combined in a single piece) for quick load, the charge is in a combustible case - so there is no empty cartridge to be removed and stored in the turret and the "shell" is a saboted shot, a shaped charge or sensor fuzed warhead. A sabot (French: shoe) is a device used in a firearm or cannon to fire a projectile or bullet that is smaller than the bore diameter. ...


Naval ammunition

The ranges at which engagements are conducted by warships are typically much greater than that at which land warfare is observed. The targets are also generally machines, not men. Naval ammunition is therefore optimized for great velocity (to reach those great ranges, to hit aircraft flying at altitude and also with the benefit of reducing the lead that has to be applied to hit a distant moving target) and to disable said machines, rather than rending human flesh. Naval gun ammunition of WWII vintage came in two main varieties, armor piercing shells to attack hardened warships or high explosive incendiary shells (with point detonating fuzes to start fires on ships, or mechanical time fuzes designed to fragment and create clouds of shrapnel to defeat aircraft). With the demise of the armored warship, contemporary naval gun ammunition is solely the high explosive variety, but new fuzing and guidance options are available to increase lethality, especially against high speed missile or aircraft threats. HEI ammunition is specially designed to pierce armor, fragment, and ignite readily combustible materials. ...


Fuses

Common artillery fuses include point detonating, delay, time, and proximity (variable time). Point detonating fuses detonate upon contact with the ground. Delay fuzes are designed to penetrate a short distance before detonating. Time fuzes, as the name implies, detonate a certain time after being fired in order to achieve an air burst above the target. Time fuzes are set to the tenth of a second. Proximity or variable time fuzes contain a simple radio transceiver activated a set time after firing to detonate the projectile when the signal reflected from the ground reaches a certain strength, designed to be 7 meters above the ground. Fuses are armed by the rotation of the projectile imparted by the rifling in the tube, and usually arm after a few hundred rotations. A proximity fuze (also called a VT fuze, for variable time) is a fuze that is designed to detonate an explosive automatically when the distance to target becomes smaller than a predetermined value or when the target passes through a given plane. ... A proximity fuze (also called a VT fuze, for variable time) is a fuze that is designed to detonate an explosive automatically when the distance to target becomes smaller than a predetermined value or when the target passes through a given plane. ... A transceiver is a device that has both a transmitter and a receiver which are combined in to one. ...


See also

Left to Right: .17 HM2, .17 HMR, .22LR, .22 WMR, .17 SMc, 5mm/35 SMc, .22 Hornet, .223 Remington, .223 WSSM, .243 Winchester, .243 Winchester Improved (Ackley), .25-06, .270 Winchester, .308, .30-06, .45-70 Govt, .50-90 Sharps From left to right: .50 BMG, 300 Win Mag, .308... Common handgun cartridges. ... An ammunition column consists of military vehicles carrying gun and S.A. ammunition for the combatant unit to which the column belongs. ... Reloading is the process in which used firearm brass (i. ... Rotation of ammunition is a term used with reference to guns. ... Armour piercing shell of the APBC 1 Light weight ballistic cap 2 Steel alloy piercing shell 3 Desensitized bursting charge (TNT, Trinitrophenol, RDX...) 4 Fuse (set with delay to explode inside the target) 5 Bourrelet (front) and driving band (rear) An armour piercing shell is a type of ammunition designed... This article includes a list of works cited or a list of external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks in-text citations. ... .357 Magnum rounds. ... An example of FMJ bullets in their usual shapes: pointed (spitzer) for the rifle and round for the pistol. ... Rheological ammunition utilizes a rheological substance that can be controlled by injecting a current or introducing a magnetic field to the projectiles core, thereby changing some properties of the projectile. ... Dumdum (Bengali দমদম) is a city and a municipality in North 24 Parganas district in the state of West Bengal, India. ... This article is concerned solely with chemical explosives. ... HEI ammunition is specially designed to pierce armor, fragment, and ignite readily combustible materials. ... Lead shot is a collective term for small balls of lead. ... An ammunition dump, or ammo dump, is a military storage facility for live ammunition and explosives. ... Tracers from M16 rifles on U.S. Army firing range Tracer ammunition (tracers) use special bullets that are modified to accept a small pyrotechnic charge in their base. ... The fuzes first used were short iron or copper tubes filled with slow-burning composition. ... A proximity fuze (also called a VT fuze, for variable time) is a fuze that is designed to detonate an explosive automatically when the distance to target becomes smaller than a predetermined value or when the target passes through a given plane. ... In ancient times various devices were adopted to ignite the charge. ... This article is about firearms projectiles. ... This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... 19th century 12 pounder (5 kg) mountain howitzer displayed by the National Park Service at Fort Laramie in Wyoming, USA A howitzer is a type of artillery piece that is characterized by a relatively short barrel and the use of comparatively small explosive charges to propel projectiles at trajectories with... A shell is a payload-carrying projectile, which, as opposed to a bullet, contains an explosive or other filling, though modern usage includes large solid projectiles previously termed shot (AP, APCR, APCNR, APDS, APFSDS and Proof shot). ... A Hatton round is a type of shotgun ammunition which consists of a semi-solid slug. ... DEMIRA Deutsche Minenraeumer e. ...

External links

References

  • This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.
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Ammunition

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Ammunition - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (3275 words)
Ammunition is a generic military term meaning (the assembly of) a projectile and its propellant.
Armor-piercing ammunition tends to be hard, sharp, and narrow, often with lubrication.
Ammunition for infantry refers to the ammunition carried by a typical foot (infantry) soldier.
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