LATEST TRENDS IN MORTAR WARFARE
Mortars, commonly termed as ‘poor man’s artillery’ are one of the most effective weapons at the disposal of an infantry commander. Though originally developed to suit the requirements of trench warfare, mortars are finding more and more usefulness in the ever changing, technology driven battle field of today. Much advancement is being carried out to not only improve mortars capability and effectiveness but also the new methods of deployment are being experimented. 2.
Latest trends in mortar sys. Following major trends are being observed in the latest mortar systems of the world. a.
For many years mortar systems were normally carried inside the vehicle and when required for action were dismounted and assembled. This is a time-consuming process and when deployed on soft ground the mortar can take even longer to assemble, making the weapon and its crew vulnerable to counter-battery fire. In mechanised units the mortar is often installed on a turntable mounted at the rear of the vehicle, enabling it to be rapidly brought into action and laid onto a target. The mortar is normally fired through open roof hatches, which exposes the crew to small-arms fire, shell splinters and nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) attack. There is now a clear trend towards the development and fielding of turret-mounted mortars that not only allow the mortar to be aimed and fired with the crew under complete protection but also have a useful direct-fire capability. This is of particular use in urban operations as well as giving the platform a self-defence capability. b.
Semi-auto loading sys.
Some of the latest mortars also have an automatic or semi-automatic loading system, which increases rate of fire but also reduces the size of crew required to operate the system. In addition, a semi-automatic loading system reduces crew fatigue. c.
The types of rifled ammunition fired include high explosive (HE),...
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