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Military




Indirect Fire

CALIBER 60-mm 81-mm 81-mm
(improved)
107-mm 120-mm 105-mm 105-mm 155-mm
MODEL M224 M29A1 M252 M30 M285 M102 M119 M198
MAX RANGE
(HE)(m)
3,490
 
4,595 5,608 6,840 7,200 11,500 14,000 18,100
PLANNING
RANGE (m)
 
 
        11,500 11,500 14,600
PROJECTILE HE,WP,
ILLUM,
HE,WP,
ILLUM,
HE,WP,
ILLUM,
RP
HE,WP,
ILLUM,
HE,SMK,
ILLUM,
HE,WP,
ILLUM,
HEP-T,
APICM,
CHEM,
APERS,
RAP
HE M760
ILLUM,
HEP-T,
APICM,
CHEM,
RAP
HE,WP,
ILLUM,
SMK,
CHEM,
NUC,
RAP,
FASCAM,
CPHD,
AP/DPICM
MAX RATE
OF FIRE
30 RPM
FOR
1 MIN
30 RPM
FOR
1 MIN
30 RPM
FOR
2 MIN
18 RPM
FOR
1 MIN
15 RPM
FOR
3 MIN
10 RPM
FOR
1 MIN
10 RPM
FOR
1 MIN
4 RPM
FOR
1 MIN
SUSTAINED
RATE OF FIRE
(rd/min)
20 8 15 3 5 3 3 2
MIMIMUM
RANGE (m)
70 70 83 770 180

DIRECT
FIRE

FUZES MO PD, VT,
TIME,
DLY
PD, VT,
TIME,
DLY
PD, VT,
TIME,
DLY
MO PD,
VT, MT,
MTSQ,
CP, DLY
PD, VT,
MTSQ,
CP, MT,
DLY
PD, VT,
CP, MT,
MTSQ,
DLY
LEGEND:
AP - Armor Piercing
APERS - Antipersonnel
APICM - Aitipersonnel Improved Conventional Munitions
CHEM - Chemical
CP - Concrete Piercing
CPHD - Copperhead
DLY - Delay
DPICM - Dual Purpose Inproved Conventional Munitions
FASCAM - Family of Scatterable Mines
HE - High Explosive
HEP-T - High Explosive Plastic Tracer
ILLUM - Illumination
MIN - Minute

MO - Multioption - VT, PD, DLY
MT - Mechanical Time
MTSQ - Mechanical Time Super Quick
NUC - Nuclear
PD - Point Detonating
RAP - Rocket Assisted Projectile
RP - Red Phosphorous
RPM - Rounds per minute
SMK - Smoke
TIME - Adjustable Time Delay
VT - Variable Time
WP - White Phosphorous

The term "danger close" is included in the call for fire when there are friendly troops or positions within a prescribed distance of the target, specifically 600 meters for artillery or mortars and 750 meters for naval gunfire. This is simply a warning and not a restriction to both the maneuver commander and the fire direction center to take proper precautions. Minimum safe distance (MSD) is defined as the distance in meters from the intended center of impact at which a specific degree of risk and vulnerability will not be exceeded with a 99% assurance. MSDs allow for the maximum use of indirect fire while ensuring the safety of friendly troops. MSD's and not "danger close" distances should be used when in close contact or as a planning figure when echeloning fires. Minimum safe distances are computed by adding the maximum pattern radius plus three circular error probable. The 1,2,3,4,5 "rule of thumb" is a good guide. This translates to:

100 meters - M203 & 40mm

200 meters- 60mm mortars

300 meters - 81mm

400 meters - 105 mm

500 meters - 155 mm/naval gunfire

Nothing contained in MSDs precludes the furnishing of close fire support to maneuver combat elements. The supported maneuver commander submitting the fire request is responsible for the decision to call for fires when those fires are less than minimum safe distances to friendly positions. The warning "danger close" is given by the requester to indicate friendly troops are within danger close distances to the target. A recommended techniques is to initiate fires at MSDs and to then "creep" fires onto the target.

Modified Minimum Safe Distance Table (FM 6-141-1)

                             Range (Meters) Observer-Adjusted Delivery           
Weapon Technique                                                                 
         1,000  2,000  4,000  6,000  8,000   10,000  12,000  14,000  16,000  18,000   20,000 
60mm     260    260                                                                          
mortar                                                                                     
81mm     330    330    322                                                                   
mortar                                                                                     
4.2-inch        350    360                                                                   
mortar                                                                                       
105mm                  340    340    350     360     380     400                             
howtizer                                                                                     
155mm                   430    440    450     460     470     530     600     680             
howitzer                                                                                     



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