Rheinmetall to supply German army with 40mm automatic grenade launcher ammunition

Rheinmetall to supply German army with 40mm automatic grenade launcher ammunition

The German Bundeswehr has placed two separate orders with Rheinmetall for the production and supply of 40mm ammunition for automatic grenade launchers. Rheinmetall will thus be supplying tens of thousands of programmable 40mm x 53 Airburst Munition (ABM) DM131 service cartridges. This order is worth around €29.5 million, including value-added tax. The Bundeswehr has also placed an order for around 200,000 rounds of 40mm x 53 Üb DM158 practice ammunition, worth around €7.18 million, once again including VAT. Delivery of the ammunition is to be completed in 2024.

A one-stop shop for 40mm systems, Rheinmetall is one of the world’s leading suppliers of ammunition, weapon systems and fire control and aiming technology. Rheinmetall’s 40mm x 53 high-velocity ammunition can be fired from any standard 40mm automatic grenade launcher. The rounds attain a maximum velocity of more than 240 m/s and have a maximum effective range of 2,200 metres. The Group’s wide assortment of cartridges in this segment includes the just-ordered programmable 40mm x 53 ABM. Because the rounds can be timed to detonate in the air, it is possible to engage troops taking cover behind walls, etc. The 40mm x 53 ABM, which the Bundeswehr refers to as the DM131, is qualified for use by the German armed forces. Other NATO armed forces have this advanced munition in their inventories as well.

Developed and qualified in accordance with the latest standards, the ammunition types now on order are unequaled worldwide in terms of combat effectiveness and precision. Moreover, the design status of the two cartridges fully corresponds to the stipulations contained in the European directive covering the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH).

The detonation time for each airburst round is electronically adjustable. Following Rheinmetall’s method, this occurs through an infrared signal sent from the fire control and aiming unit after the projectile has been fired. The round detonates at a precisely calculated distance above its intended target, even if it is concealed by obstacles. Consequently, this groundbreaking ammunition significantly improves the combat capability of the Bundeswehr’s well-tested 40mm automatic grenade launcher.

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