Medium Calibre Ammunition for Combat Vehicles from Rheinmetall – more than a match for contemporary threats

14 October 2019

Rheinmetall to Feature 30mm and 50mm Capabilities During AUSA

From heavy machine guns mounted on patrol vehicles to the automatic cannons used to arm Infantry fighting vehicles and combat aircraft, to air defense and C-RAM applications – a wide array of battlefield effectors rely today on medium-caliber rounds ammunition.

Among the most widely used types are Air Burst rounds (KETF/HETF), high explosive incendiary (HEI), armor-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot (APFSDS), frangible (FAP/FAPDS) and target practice (TP/TPDS) rounds.

One of the world’s leading suppliers of defense technology systems, Rheinmetall offers an extensive range of ammunition and ammunition components. Visitors to the Rheinmetall stand at AUSA can discover how modern medium-caliber ammunition enhances the combat effectiveness of existing weapon systems.

Medium caliber ammunition for Infantry Fighting Vehicles In the field of infantry vehicles, Rheinmetall’s 30mm x 173 and 35mm x 228 ammunition families have a longer maximum effective range and increased destructive power compared to commonly used 20mm or 25mm automatic cannon ammunition.

Another advantage over these smaller calibers is that the 30mm and 50mm cartridges can be fitted with a programmable fuse to enhance their effectiveness even further. This has led the German Army to move on from the 20mm x 139 to the 30mm x 173 caliber, also adding Rheinmetall`s 30mm KETF airburst cartridge to their inventory, and the Dutch Army to swap their 25mm x 137 for the 35mm x 228 caliber, including the 35mm KETF cartridge Rheinmetall’s 30 and 35mm airburst cartridges are being programmed inductively as they leave the muzzle.

As opposed to programming that takes placed during feeding, this approach enables time-of-flight correction by measuring the muzzle velocity of each individual projectile, which results in an extremely precise burst point at the target area. This results in a significantly increased effectiveness and stowed kills.

For future ammunition effectiveness improvement, Rheinmetall is working on a 50mm x 228 ammunition family for the US based on its state-of-the-art 35mm x 228 ammunition family.

The US Army is developing a 50mm family of ammunition for use in the OMFV Bradley IFV replacement. In the longer term Rheinmetall is already developing prototypes of a 50mm x 358 ammunition family to go with its future externally driven 50mm WOTAN cannon.


For more information, please contact:

Oliver Hoffmann

Head of Public Relations

Rheinmetall AG

Tel.: +49-(0)211-473 4748