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"Axis Hollow-Charge Ammunition" from Tactical and Technical Trends

The following report on German and Italian hollow-charge ammunition was published in Tactical and Technical Trends, No. 18, Feb. 11, 1943.

[DISCLAIMER: The following text is taken from the U.S. War Department publication Tactical and Technical Trends. As with all wartime intelligence information, data may be incomplete or inaccurate. No attempt has been made to update or correct the text. Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent those of the website.]


As previously reported in Tactical and Technical Trends (No. 4, p. 21) the Axis armies are using hollow-charge ammunition. This is armor-piercing ammunition with an explosive charge or filling and is designed to pierce armor at relatively low muzzle velocities. The Germans consider that it achieves reasonably good armor penetration with little loss of antipersonnel fragmentation.

The Germans are known to have at least 3 types of hollow-charge ammunition, all caliber 75-mm and designated as follows:

7.5-cm Pz. Gr. Patr. 38 KwK,
7.5-cm Gr. 38,
7.5-cm Jgr. 38.

The first type is used in both the short- and long-barrelled 75-mm tank guns; presumably this ammunition could be used in the new 75-mm antitank gun (7.5-cm Pak 40) discussed in this issue in article number 4. The second type is designed for the 75-mm light field gun 18, and the third type for the 75-mm infantry gun.

The Italians also are reported as having developed hollow-charge ammunition. They are known to have three types, 75/18, 75/27, and 100/17. The 75/18 is designed for the Italian 75/18 (caliber 75-mm, length of bore 18 calibers) gun-howitzer, the 75/27 for the standard 75-mm light field piece, and the 100/17 for the 100-mm mountain howitzer.

The 75/18 weapon exists in two models: model 34 and 35. Model 34 is a mountain gun; model 35, which has a more heavily constructed carriage, is used as a field piece and a self-propelled armored mount (see Tactical and Technical Trends, No. 6, p. 35).


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