Drawing: Cobra Drawing: Cobra

M5 Armament Subsystem

Image: M5 Armament Subsytem

The M5 helicopter armament subsystem launches 40-mm antipersonnel fragmentation-type projectiles to provide a neutralization fire capability for UH-1B/C/M helicopters. The maximum rate of fire is 220 rounds per minute. Maximum employable ranges is 1,750 meters, and maximum effective range is 1,500 meters. Ammunition capacity for box fed is 150 rounds, and rotary-drum fed is 300 rounds.

The M5 armament subsystem employs a 40-mm gun mounted in a flexible power-operated turret on the nose of the helicopter. Weapon fire is controlled by the gunner with a flexible control or in the fixed position by the gunner or pilot using the cyclic trigger switch. Within the physical travel limitations of the turret, gun control is independent of the helicopter's flight attitude. When the turret control switch is released by the gunner, the turret returns to a fixed forward attitude (stow position). Either the pilot or gunner can fire the gun in the stow position by depressing the firing switch located on either cyclic stick. The pilot can preset or control gun elevation in the stow position by adjusting a wheel on the turret control panel assembly.

The turret assembly is used to mount the grenade launcher. It is ball shaped and attaches to three hard points outside the helicopter electrical equipment compartment. The top and forward enclosure assemblies are removed to permit access to the launcher and the turret components. The forward enclosure assembly has a rectangular slot which is closed by a protective brush through which the barrel of the launcher protrudes. The top enclosure has an opening through which the ammunition feed chute and electrical cable enter the turret.

The grenade launcher (M129) is an air-cooled, electric motor driven, rapid-fire weapon capable of launching 40-mm anti-personnel projectiles. The electric motor drives the launcher through the entire operation cycle of feeding, chambering, cocking, locking, firing, unlocking, extracting, and ejecting.

Image: Link 40mm rounds

The forty-millimeter ammunition for the M129 grenade launcher is percussion primed. The average muzzle velocity for a 40-mm projectile is 795 feet per second.

M385 Training. The M385 is designed for practice firing or for proof-testing the weapon. It is an inert, solid aluminum projectile with a rotating band press fitted into an aluminum case. The warhead is blue in color.

M383, M384, and M684 High-explosive. The M383, M384, and M684 HE rounds are intended to produce personnel casualties in the target area using ground-burst effect. The projectile bodies are steel and have a metal rotating band press fitted into an aluminum case. Both the M383 HE and M384 HE contain an explosive filler of 54.5 grams (approximately 1.9 ounces) of composition A5; the M684 has a 53-gram charge of composition A5. Fragmentation from these rounds can produce a 5-meter casualty radius. An M533 PD fuze is threaded into the front ends of the projectiles. When the round is fired, the fuze arms 18 to 36 meters from the launcher. The M384 is essentially the same round as the M383; however, the projectile body is made from a different type of steel. The M684 has the same physical characteristics as the M383 except for an electric proximity fuze (M596) which provides air burst functioning. Burst height varies depending on the reflected signal received by the fuze. The electronic fuze arms approximately 125 meters from the launcher.

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Updated: 12 January 2008
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Born on 08 September 1998