Ground Warfare

Northrop Grumman Completes M829A4 Ammunition Deliveries to US Army

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Northrop Grumman Completes M829A4 Ammunition Deliveries to US Army

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Northrop Grumman Completes M829A4 Ammunition Deliveries to US Army
Northrop Grumman Completes M829A4 Ammunition Deliveries to US Army

Northrop Grumman Corporation announced today it successfully completed production of the M829A4 120mm cartridge to the U.S. Army. The M829 is an American armor-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot (APFSDS) tank round. The penetrator is carried by a sabot during its acceleration in the gun barrel. Modeling was done at the Ballistic Research Laboratory at Aberdeen Proving Ground, which was incorporated into the U.S. Army Research Laboratory in 1992. The M829A4 is a line-of-sight kinetic-energy cartridge designed specifically for the Abrams M1A2 System Enhancement Program version 3 (SEP v3) Main Battle Tank. It provides the Abrams SEP v3 ability to defeat threat vehicles equipped with third-generation explosive reactive armor. With production completed in December 2023, the company is no longer producing depleted uranium ammunition.

Dave Fine, vice president and general manager, armament systems, Northrop Grumman: “Our team continues to deliver tactical and training ammunition as partners to help the U.S. Army meet its ever-increasing requirements for medium- and large-caliber systems worldwide. The successful completion of M829A4 during this final production year contract exemplifies of our longstanding partnership with the U.S. Army and our commitment to delivering on our obligations. We also are developing advanced ammunition types, including the M1147 120mm Advanced Multi-Purpose cartridge, a ‘smart round’ that will replace the capabilities of multiple rounds currently in inventory.”

A U.S. Army Master Gunner Instructor, assigned to 3rd Squadron, 16th Calvary Regiment, removes a M829A4 sabot tank round out of thee canister to load into the loader hatch on a M1A2 SEP V2 Abrams Tank where to move at Ware Range, Fort Benning, GA., July 20, 2021.
A U.S. Army Master Gunner Instructor, assigned to 3rd Squadron, 16th Calvary Regiment, removes a M829A4 sabot tank round out of thee canister to load into the loader hatch on a M1A2 SEP V2 Abrams Tank where to move at Ware Range, Fort Benning, GA., July 20, 2021. (U.S. Army Reserve photo by Staff Sgt. Austin Berner)

The A4 variant was under development by Alliant Techsystems Inc. (ATK) (Orbital ATK was bought by Northrop Grumman in 2018) until ATK received a $77 million, three-year contract on 11 July 2011 to develop and qualify the M829A4 Advanced Kinetic Energy (AKE) round for the U.S. Army’s M1A2 SEP (System Enhancement Package) Abrams Main Battle Tank. The M829A4 is a fifth-generation APFSDS-T cartridge using a depleted-uranium penetrator with a three-petal composite sabot; the penetrator includes a low-drag fin with a tracer and a windshield and tip assembly. Its propellant maintains consistent muzzle velocities across operational temperatures from ?25 to 145 °F (?32 to 63 °C). The new Advanced Combustible Cartridge Case is similar to previous models but has a relocated skive joint placement for better crew-member safety during handling.

Northrop Grumman will continue to produce and develop training and tactical medium- and large-caliber ammunition for U.S. and allied forces. The company’s legacy in the design and development of medium- and large caliber ammunition spans more than 40 years providing tactical and training tank ammunition to U.S. and allied militaries around the globe. Today, Northrop Grumman are looking to the future through creating ammunition types that include air-bursting, proximity, and guided munitions that provide greater precision and the ability to counter unmanned threats and defeat advanced armor. Northrop Grumman pioneering solutions equip customers with capabilities they need to connect and protect the world, and push the boundaries of human exploration across the universe.

Northrop Grumman Completes M829A4 Ammunition Deliveries to US Army
A U.S. Army M1A2 SEP V2 Abrams Tank, assigned to 3rd Squadron, 16th Calvary Regiment, fires the 120mm main gun at their assigned targets at Ware Range, Fort Benning, GA., July 20, 2021. (U.S. Army Reserve photo by Staff Sgt. Austin Berner)

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