Artillery: July 2, 2002


The Marines are continuing efforts to field the Dragon Fire 120mm mortar concept to provide medium fire support for mobile armored units. The plan is to build Dragon Fire in such a way that it can be towed behind a Humvee, or winched into the bay of a cargo variant of the LAV armored car and used as self-propelled artillery. Since the current Dragon Fire prototypes won't fit into an LAV, the Marines borrowed a French 2R2M rifled 120mm mortar (which will fit) for wargames last March. After some earlier experiments did not work out as hoped, the Marines are concentrating on rifled mortars as these have more range and accuracy than cheaper smoothbore mortars.--Stephen V Cole


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