Wednesday, February 6, 2013

D 20

The M1955 was developed in the 1950s to late to be deployed in the Great Patriotic War 1939-1945. However this howitzer has shown reliability and power in numerous wars deployed by scores of nations. The Soviet Union design bureau awarded the contract to Petrov Artillery and the M1955 was built in Yekaterinburg a city in central Russia used in WW II to relocate many heavy factories and many stayed after the war.

The D-20 can be towed by a variety of tracked and wheeled vehicles.

The D 20 was placed on an existing carriage used by the D 74 and was a common practice used by the Soviets. The gun proved to be well designed and rugged enough during field trails. An 8 man crew was needed to man the howitzer an AT-S medium tractor was used for towing along with the URAL-375 6x6 heavy truck. The Russian government still uses the M1955/D20 and still field about 1,000 guns in their arsenal. An initiative development was a semiautomatic vertical sliding wedge breech block.

The major copy was from The Peoples Republic of China that produced the Type 66. This variant has been shipped all around the globe. Type 66 was made with few changes making most Soviet parts interchangeable along with using all types of 152 mm ammunition. The barrel was 5.195 m (17ft 0.5 in) long using a double baffle muzzle to reduce the recoil. A shield was mounted to protect the breach and recoil mechanism. The crew also was protected to some degree. A firing pedestal was lowered to the grown before firing and the split tail carriage was also rested on the pedestal, this allowed a full 360 degrees traverse.

The main projectile used by the howitzer was the HE-FRAG that weighted 95.92 lbs which led to the sustained rate of fire to 1 rpm. Special types included an AP shell 107.54 kg that would penetrate 124 mm (4.88 in) of armor at 1,000 m (1,095 yards). Smoke and illuminating projectiles are available along with a shell contained flechettes for use against infantry and another that spread anti personnel mines in flight.

A rate of 5 to 6 rounds-per-minute can be achieved with 1 round-per-minute in the sustained firing role. Range for an HE-FRAG projectile is reported at 19,040 yards while a rocket-assisted projectile can land within 26,245 yards. Elevation of the barrel is -5 degrees to +65 degrees with a traverse of 58 degrees.

Specifications for the D-20 (M1955)

Overall Length: 26.57ft (8.10m)
Width: 7.71ft (2.35m)
Height: 8.27ft (2.52m)
Weight: 6.3 US Short Tons (5,700kg; 12,566lbs)

Armament Suite: 1 x 152mm Main Gun

Ammunition: Varies. Typical 152mm ammunition type is Frag-HE, OF32.



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