M150 Penetrating Augmented Munition (PAM)
The Demolition Munition, Concrete Penetrating, HE: M150, also known as the Penetrating Augmented Munition (PAM) is a lightweight, man portable demolition device being developed for the Special Operations Forces. A compact 33 inches long and weighing approximately 42 lbs. PAM can be emplaced by a single person to defeat reinforced concrete bridge piers, walls, and abutments. The munition can be carried in a rucksack or strapped to load-bearing equipment without interfering with the soldier's ability to walk, climb, or rappel. In adddition, it can be initiated by any standard military detonation device.
The M150 Penetration Augmented Munition (PAM) is a unique, aggressive design, challenging the state of the art in demolitions. Special Operation Forces (SOF) will use the PAM to defeat large reinforced bridge piers. The PAM is a multi-stage munition as follows: a Tandem Forward Charge (TFC) which provides a pilot hole in the target, a Follow Through Charge (FTC) which buries itself in the target and then detonates, a Propulsion System which accelerates the FTC so that it will penetrate to the proper depth in the target, and an Electronic Fuzing System (SCS) for the initiation of the FTC propulsion, the FTC, and the TFC using Explosive Foil Initiators (EFIs).
A typical demolition target for the soldiers is a bridge. To destroy it, they must detonate two PAM units simultaneously at the bridge pier. They trigger the PAMs' propelling charges and shoot the warheads directly into the structure. The motion of the propelling charge sets off each PAM's other three charges: one charge cuts through the bridge's concrete rebar, the second makes a deep, narrow hole in the bridge pier, and the third penetrates to the bottom of that hole and detonates.
The PAM is equipped with a silent stud driver and self-contained standoff assembly for proper positioning and attachment to the target. The silent stud driver fires an explosive stud into the target. The PAM is then hung against the target, using this stud and the strap provided. The warhead consists of a forward charge, which cuts any rebar; a hole-drilling charge, which forms a hole in the target; and a follow-through charge, which is propelled to the bottom of the hole where it detonates. The explosion fractures the structure and results in a loss of at least 75% of load-bearing capacity. The explosion renders the bridge useless to mechanized units.
Although designed primarily for reinforced concrete targets, PAM has applications for a wide range of missions, especially those where tamping of the explosive will enhance performance. PAM allows the user to place a substantial amount of explosive deep within reinforced concrete, earth, sand, or other targets to multiply explosive effects.
It provides non-nuclear capability, with greater explosive effectiveness per volume than current military explosives, to create obstacles out of concrete structures in the enemy's rear area. Although designed primarily for reinforced concrete targets, PAM has applications for a wide range of missions, especially those where tamping of the explosive will enhance performance. PAM allows the user to place a substantial amount of explosive deep within reinforced concrete, earth, sand, or other targets to multiply explosive effects.
The PAM replaces 200lbs of C4, and decreases volume from 4,500 cu. in. to 400 cu. in. It reduces mission time from 3+ man-hrs to 2 man-mins, and requires only one person to defeat each target vs. seven people using conventional explosives.
The genesis of the multistage PAM can be traced to work during the 1980s on a two-stage munition system for the Air Force. Livermore scientists evolved a two-stage munition based on the work of a defense industry contractor into a warhead for a 2,000-pound laser-guided bomb. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency sponsored further development of a three-stage munition designed to crater airfield runways. The portable four-stage multicharge PAM-a demolition munition at once compact, light, and effective- was realized under the joint DOD/DOE MOU program. During the fabrication and testing of the first PAM, the device would not work properly because the shock resulting from the rebar-destroying and hole-drilling charges caused the fuse in in the main penetrating charge to malfunction. Livermore scientists developed a fuse that could survive the explosive shocks and detonate the last charge at the appropriate time.
The XM150 Penetration Augmented Munition was type classified during Fiscal 1998. The current full-scale development program includes logistics, MANPRINT manuals, and fabrication of a PAM trainer.
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