Sunday, February 14, 2021

U.S. Army is set to buy more anti-personnel mines

In a February 12, sources-sought synopsis, the U.S. Army Contracting Command revealed plans to buy about 15,000 M18A1 claymore mines.

The Army intends to award a contract for M18A1 Claymore directional anti-personnel mines, according to the U.S. government’s main contracting website.

In addition, its solicitation says that the M18A1 Anti Personnel Weapon Body will consist of a molded plastic case approximately 22 cm wide, 14 cm high, and 6 cm thick that is formed to a slight arc along its vertical axis. The case is lined with a single layer of 700 steel balls in a resin matrix along the inside of the convex side.

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Also noted that the remainder of the case is filled with approximately 0.75 kg of Composition C4 high explosive, which will be provided as GFM. Two folding, scissor-type steel legs are affixed to the bottom edge. Molded along the top edge are an aiming site and two cap wells that accept plastic combination shipping plug/blasting cap holders.

The non-electric initiation system (Mini Det Assembly, 13006677) is composed of an approximately 100 ft shock-tube (a plastic tube with its inside wall coated with mixture of HMX and aluminum power), Blasting cap and In-line initiation system.

Photo by Gertrud Zach

The M18A1 Claymore mine uses a handheld detonator which the Soldier controls and detonates when enemies cross the path of the mine, meaning it is fired by remote-control and shoots a pattern of metal balls into the kill zone like a shotgun.

The Claymore can also be victim-activated by booby-trapping it with a tripwire firing system for use in area denial operations.

The Claymore fires steel balls out to about 100 m (110 yd) within a 60° arc in front of the device. It is used primarily in ambushes and as an anti-infiltration device against enemy infantry. It is also used against unarmored vehicles.

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Colton Jones
Colton Jones is technology editor for Defenсe Blog. He has written about emerging technology in military magazines and elsewhere.

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