Heckler & Koch AG36
The AG36 grenade launcher mounted to a G36 A2 rifle of the German Army
|Place of origin||Germany|
|Used by||See Users|
|Wars||Afghanistan War, Iraq War|
|Designer||Heckler & Koch|
|Manufacturer||Heckler & Koch|
|Variants||AG-C, L17A1, L123A2, M320|
|Weight||1.5 kg (3.31 lb)|
|Length||350 mm (13.8 in)|
|Barrel length||280 mm (11.0 in)|
|Width||90 mm (3.5 in)|
|Height||210 mm (8.3 in)|
|Action||Breech-loaded, tilting barrel|
|Rate of fire||Single-shot|
|Muzzle velocity||76 m/s (249 ft/s)|
|Feed system||Manually loaded|
|Sights||Folding ladder sight
150 mm (5.9 in) sight radius
The AG36 is a single-shot 40 mm grenade launcher which operates on the High-Low System and was designed primarily for installation on the G36 assault rifle, designed by the German weapons manufacturing company Heckler & Koch of Oberndorf am Neckar. It originally appeared as Heckler & Koch's candidate for the US Army's Enhanced Grenade Launcher requirement, evaluated for use with the XM8 and FN SCAR rifles. As is commonly mistaken, the "A" is not an addition to the name "G36" which is short for Gewehr 36 but is in fact an abbreviation of the German Anbaugranatwerfer, literally meaning "attached grenade launcher" and the 36 coming from the name of the primary weapon it was designed to enhance – the G36. It can also be used dismounted, with a stock attached as a stand alone model, or a LLM01 laser light module can be attached to it.
Design details 
As in many modern weapon systems including the G36 series, extensive use of polymers and high-strength aluminium in the AG36 launcher contributes to its low mass and durability. It is capable of firing almost all 40x46mm grenade rounds, including plastic training cartridges, flexible baton rounds, CS gas, and oleoresin capsicum (OC, the same chemical used in pepper spray) gas cartridges, white phosphorus, and HE ammunition. Once attached, the AG36 does not affect the accuracy of the rifle or its handling and operating functions. The AG36 is a part of Germany's Infantryman of the future program.
The AG36 is a single-shot weapon with a break-action steel barrel and unlike its American counterpart, the M203, the AG36 swings out laterally for loading, allowing for the use of longer rounds when necessary, e.g. baton or flare rounds. When open, the breech is on the left. For installation the rifle's existing barrel handguard is removed and replaced by the AG36. The weapon has a trigger group with a manual safety lever and a pistol grip for ease of handling. Aiming is accomplished using standard ladder sights, which are located on the left side of the launcher body and folded down when not in use.
The L17A1 and L123A2 UGL (Under-slung Grenade Launcher) are the under-barrel 40 mm grenade launchers used by the British Army in conjunction with the L85A2 rifle (L123A2 UGL), and in small numbers with the L119A1 carbine used by United Kingdom Special Forces and the Pathfinder Platoon (L17A1 UGL). It is designed and built by Heckler & Koch and is a modified variant of the AG36. The UGL was first deployed during Operation Telic in 2003. The UGL replaced the muzzle-launched Rifle Grenade General Service. One UGL is issued per fireteam within infantry battalions.
A further version of the AG36 is the Heckler & Koch AG-C/EGLM.
- Germany: Replacing the Heckler & Koch HK69A1.
- Lithuania: Lithuanian Armed Forces.
- United Kingdom: Designated L123A2 and used in conjunction with the L85A2 rifle.
See also 
- DE&S response to freedom of information request
- Jones, Richard D. Jane's Infantry Weapons 2009/2010. Jane's Information Group; 35 edition (January 27, 2009). ISBN 978-0-7106-2869-5.
- "Lietuvos kariuomenė :: Ginkluotė ir karinė technika » Granatsvaidžiai ir prieštankiniai ginklai » Povamzdinis granatsvaidis AG-36" (in (Lithuanian)). Kariuomene.kam.lt. 2009-04-17. Retrieved 2011-04-08.
- [dead link]
- "A 5.56 X 45mm "Timeline" 2002-2003". The Gun Zone. Retrieved 2011-04-08.
- Heckler & Koch – official page
- Modern Firearms
- The Infantry's Explosive Punch (Asian Military Review article)