General Dyanmics unveils Medium-caliber Machine Gun

Discussion in 'Land Forces' started by asianobserve, May 16, 2012.

  1. asianobserve

    asianobserve Elite Member Elite Member

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    By GeneralDynamics on Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

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    General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products, a business unit of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), today unveiled a next-generation Lightweight Medium Machine Gun (LWMMG) at the Joint Armaments Conference in Seattle, Wash.

    Identifying an unmet warfighter need, General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products conducted its own research and development program to develop the LWMMG in just over one year. The weapon is designed for low-cost production and for maximum effectiveness at the small unit level, where weight and lethality are decisive factors.

    “The LWMMG is an affordable weapon that closes a current operational gap, providing .50 caliber-like firepower in range and effect at the same weight and size of currently fielded 7.62mm machine guns,” said Steve Elgin, vice president and general manager of armament systems for General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products. “Weighing in at 24 pounds and featuring a fully collapsible stock, the LWMMG offers superior mobility and portability in both mounted and dismounted operations.”

    General Dynamics’ LWMMG also offers a distinct advantage in both extended and close-in fighting by using the highly efficient .338 Norma Magnum cartridge for increased accuracy and lethality out to 1,700 meters, a distance currently gapped in the operational capabilities of warfighters.

    “By employing the larger .338 NM round, the LWMMG delivers twice the range and dramatically increases lethality above the 7.62 round,” said Elgin. “In addition, the LWMMG goes beyond providing suppressive fire and gives warfighters the ability to attack point targets at significantly extended ranges.”

    The LWMMG has a firing rate of 500 rounds per minute, a maximum range of 5,642 meters, and is equipped with quick-change barrel technology. In addition to use by dismounted infantry and on ground vehicles, the weapon can be used as the armament system aboard helicopters and littoral craft, providing greater range and effectiveness for those platforms.

    “The LWMMG is a well-designed machine gun ideally suited to provide long-range lethality to U.S. and allied forces,” Elgin said.


    Read more: New Medium-caliber Machine Gun Unveiled at Joint Armaments Conference | Army & Land Forces News at DefenceTalk
     
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  3. asianobserve

    asianobserve Elite Member Elite Member

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    Constant War Dividend...
     
  4. pack leader

    pack leader Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    stupid idea :
    non standard bullet means commercial and military flop
     
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  5. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Standardisation of ammunition is a very important aspect in war so that it can be fired from all types of weapons, the weapons selected being the ideal one for that circumstance in battle.
     
  6. asianobserve

    asianobserve Elite Member Elite Member

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    For a giant defense company to go through the trouble of developing this machine gun, I'm sure there's logic to this madness...
     
  7. Damian

    Damian Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    There is a good reason why such calliber was choosen. It is a compormise between 7,62x51mm ammunition and 12,7x99mm. It have better characteristics than 7,62x51mm and is also lighter and smaller than 12,7x99mm, thus infantry squad have a general purpose machine gun with effective range and fire power not much worser than heavy machine gun, and with both of these better than currently used GPMG's like M240 or FN-MAG58.
     
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  8. kaustav2001

    kaustav2001 Regular Member

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    Isn't the .338 round mainly a sniping round, so it'll probably be more expensive as well. Wonder how cost effective it would be - given the fact that the avg. soldier (using either 7.62 or 5.56) would not need this round but it would still need to carry it around.
     
  9. Damian

    Damian Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    This GPMG use different ammunition, it is not .338 Laupa Magnum that is indeed a sniper rifle round, but a .338 Norma Magnum.

    As I said, there was a good reason to design GPMG using such ammunition, and this good reason is based on real combat experiences.
     
  10. W.G.Ewald

    W.G.Ewald Defence Professionals/ DFI member of 2 Defence Professionals

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  11. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    This is a good development..

    But this would change the rounds from LMG...



    AR = 6.8 SPC

    LMG & GPMG = .338

    Snipers = 6.8 & .338
     
  12. asianobserve

    asianobserve Elite Member Elite Member

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    I recall now that GD was awarded a contract to develop a new lightweight .50 cal machine gun, M2 replacement, is this it (obviously this is not a .50 cal MG)?

    This prototype picture was released several years back:

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  13. Damian

    Damian Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    M2 replacement is still under R&D phase, as a interim solution, units are ecivieng new M2A1 HMG.

    New GD GPMG have some elements based on that M2 replacement design solutions AFAIK.
     
  14. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    A wide variety of calibre and cartridge types always makes me uncomfortable.

    These things tend to be a logistic nightmare.
     
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  15. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    That is why one have to chose the right caliber..

    The era of 5.56 is getting over, may be this new .338 end 7.62nato..
     
  16. methos

    methos Regular Member

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    I don't think that there is much need for a machine gun between 7.62 mm and 12.7 mm, especially not one for infantry. Even though an increase in combat might be usefull, the question that should be asked here is: Why a MG? 7.62 mm is already a huge advantage over the 5.56 mm round, not in terms of speed, but in effective range and especially in lethality.
    The article cites 1,700 m as new maximum range for the LWMMG, but this actually depends on the exact use. E.g. the MG4 (5.55 mm NATO) has a range of 1,000 m, which is actually more than the range of a G3 DMR (600 m effective range, 800 m for suppression fire)... how comes? It depends on the usage - an assault rifle with just 20-30 rounds cannot waste much ammunition for a single target, while a MG will fire a rather long burst of bullets at a very high rate of fire - the majority of the rounds will miss, but due to their number it is likely that one (or more) will hit the target. Compared to a man-portable 7.62 mm MG the LWMMG has a range advantage of less than 500 m, while the ammunition weighs more, is larger and produces more recoil. So in the end the typical LWMMG carrier should have less ammunition, while probably being less accurate but is having a few hundreds of meters longer range... is this sensefull? Depends on doctrine. Most NATO forces did not use or have changed from GPMG (i.e. "medium MG") to more, but less potent LMGs (Minimi, MG4, M249) for large parts of their forces.

    There is also no reason to fit this weapon to a vehicle, as nearly all RWS (and all other mounts) can support .50 cal HMGs or even 14.5 mm HMGs, but the best choice would be a 40 mm GMG.

    I don't think so. 5.56 mm NATO has been criticized quite often, being to short-ranged and for low lethality (in Vietnam already, but also in modern examples like Iraq and Afghanistan). The main point of using 5.56 mm NATO or similar rounds is that they offer quite good performance, while being very low-weight. E.g. a soldier can carry an assault rifle (G36, M16A2) and 240 rounds for the same weight as a single 7.62 mm assault rifle and 100 rounds (G3). The G11 would have continued this trend and allowd a soldier to carry more than 500 rounds for the same weight.
     
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  17. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    Short range ? SS109 the one Indian forces used is accurate even 400ms with optics, 5.56mm is not liked by many coz of its lack in killing power..

    Rest is fine, 6.8mm is better in longer ranges and shorter ranges, Its stopping power is better than 5.56mm, 6.5mm outperform 6.8mm in close ranges though its different in long ranges..
     
  18. methos

    methos Regular Member

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    Shorter range than the 7.62 mm NATO catridge - better than the still used 7.62 x 39 mm catridge of the AK-47 (which is like the original 7.92/8 mm Kurzpatrone a shortened rifle catridge). NATO had during most of it's lifetime until now only four main catridges - 9 mm Parabellum for pistols and submachine guns, 5.56 mm for assault rifles and LMGs, 7.62 mm for GPMGs and some other assault rifles and 12.7 mm for HMGs. From these four NATO standarized rounds 5.56 mm NATO is only better than 9 mm - all other rounds are stronger in terms of effective range and lethality.
    Both the Germans and the Brittons did encounter troubles in longer range fighting with the 5.56 mm round in Afghanistan, similar things probably happened to the U.S. forces to. Because of this older 7.62 mm rifles (e.g. for the Germans the G3) were fitted with new sights and other gimmicks and then send to the forces in Afghanistan.

    400 m is a short range for modern weapons - as I said MGs have allways a longer range because of the rate of fire, but for ranges above 600 m the 5.56 mm NATO was not considered as usefull by German and British forces.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2012
  19. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    There are set of ranges as per set of weaponry..

    400M is good enough for AR, Beyond 400m is the Marksman Rifle that is from 600m to 1000m, from 1000m and beyond in infantry Mortars, that is what taught in Infantry schools..

    It is not Germans and British forces told media that a Rifle man need to engage beyond 600meters, there are Marksman assigned to squads for this purpose..
     
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