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M102 howitzer

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The M102 howitzer firing
Place of originUnited States
Service history
In service1964–present
WarsVietnam War
Invasion of Grenada
Gulf War
Iraq War
Lebanese Civil War
Salvadoran Civil War
Production history
ManufacturerRock Island Arsenal
Mass1,496 kg (3,298 lb)
LengthTravel: 6.40 m (21 ft)
Barrel length32 calibres[1]
WidthTravel: 1.96 m (6 ft 5 in)
HeightTravel: 1.59 m (5 ft 3 in)

Shell105 × 372 mm R
Caliber105 mm (4.1 in)
ActionVertical sliding-wedge
CarriageBox trail
Elevation−5° to +75°
Rate of fireMaximum: 10 rpm
Normal: 3 rpm
Effective firing range11.5 km (7.1 miles)
Maximum firing range15.1 km (9.4 miles) with rocket-assisted projectile

The M102 is a light, towable 105 mm howitzer. It was used by the United States Army in the Vietnam War,[2] the First Gulf War, and the Iraq War.[3]

Overview[change | change source]

The M102 105 mm howitzer is used in helicopter, attack plane, and light infantry operations. The weapon carriage is lightweight welded aluminum. It is mounted on a variable recoil mechanism. The weapon is manually loaded and positioned. It can be towed by a 2-ton truck or High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV), which can be transported by UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters, or can be dropped by parachute with airborne units. Since 1964, the Army acquired 1,150 M102 towed howitzers. The weapon is being replaced by the M119-series 105 mm howitzer.[4]

102 Howitzer belonging to Battery A, 1st Battalion, 206th Field Artillery, 39th Brigade Combat Team, in position at Camp Taji, Iraq 29 May 2004

Characteristics[change | change source]

  • Caliber: 105 mm (4.13 in)
  • Length: 21.8 feet (6.4 m)
  • Barrel Length: 32 calibres
  • Width: 6.4 feet (2 m)
  • Height: 5.2 feet (1.6 m)
  • Weight: 1.5 tons (1.4 t)
  • Crew: 8
  • Rate of fire: 10 rounds per minute maximum, 3 rounds per minute sustained
  • Range: 11,500 m (7.1 miles), 15,100 m (9.4 miles) with rocket-assisted projectile

Operators[change | change source]

Former operators[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. Chant, Christopher (2013). A Compendium of Armaments and Military Hardware (Routledge Revivals). New York: Routledge. p. 99. ISBN 978-0-415-71068-8. Retrieved 29 October 2016.
  2. Eliot, George Fielding (1967). "Fire Support in Vietnam". Ordnance. 51 (281): 470–473. ISSN 0030-4557. JSTOR 45364020.
  3. Head, William (2013). "The Battles of Al-Fallujah: Urban Warfare and the Growth of Air Power". Air Power History. 60 (4): 32–51. ISSN 1044-016X. JSTOR 26276386.
  4. Operator's Manual for Howitzer, Light, Towed, 105-mm, M102 (1015-00-086-8164). Headquarters, Department of the Army. 2008-04-03 [1985].
  5. "SIPRI arms transfer database". Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. 17 June 2011. Archived from the original on 13 May 2011. Retrieved 17 June 2011.
  6. Larson, Caleb (2022-09-02). "The AC-130's Upgraded Cannon Is Bringing the Heat". The National Interest. Retrieved 2022-10-01.

Other websites[change | change source]