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M107/M110 Self Propelled 175mm/203mm Artillery


During the 1950's the U.S Army's, 175mm and 203mm self propelled artillery, utilized a tracked chassis from the current M-55, 155mm artillery unit. Evaluation showed this combination exceeded 80,000 lbs, making it much to heavy to allow air transportation. In addition, the use of a gasoline engine complicated its logistical deployment and provided only limited power and range. By the early 1960's, the Pacific Car and Foundry Company, developed a tracked chassis that was 30,000 lbs lighter and utilized a 400 hp diesel engine. The successful chassis design was used for both the 175mm, 6.9 inch and the 203mm, 8 inch, self propelled artillery units. The use of a diesel engine and its decreased weight, increased the power and range for both configurations from 160 miles to 450 miles with a maximum speed of 35 mph.
The M-107, 175mm projectile weighted 150lbs and with a special rocket assist shell, had a maximum range of 35,500 yards. However, unlike the 155mm and 203mm artillery rounds, the 175mm had limited compatibility within NATO forces, many of these have been converted to the 203mm projectile. The 203mm, 8 inch, 200 lb projectile of the M-110, could also be fired with a special rocket assist shell providing a maximum range of 31,800 yards. The 203mm caliber also had a greater selection of munitions including tactical nuclear projectiles. Some criticism of the unit was its lack of protection for the operating crew of 5 from enemy fire. The other, is that it carried only 2 shells, the rest of the shells required a separate vehicle which often did not have the same ability to readily traverse the same terrain as the M107/110.


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Christy Butler **** www.shoeboxphotos.net **** **** butts@bcn.net