Mk44 Bushmaster II
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|Mk44 Bushmaster II|
Finnish CV 9030 with Mk44
|Place of origin||United States|
|Used by||See users|
|Designer||Alliant Techsystems (ATK)|
|Weight||344 lb (160 kg)|
|Length||134.05 inches (3,405 mm)|
|Barrel length||94.88 inches (2,410 mm)|
|Width||13.5 inches (340 mm)|
|Height||15.43 inches (392 mm)|
|Caliber||30 millimetres (1.18 in) caliber|
|Rate of fire||100/200 rounds per minute|
|Muzzle velocity||1,080 metres per second (3,500 ft/s) (HEI-T ammunition)|
|Effective range||3,000 metres (9,800 ft) land appl. 5,100 metres (16,700 ft) naval appl.|
The Mk44 Bushmaster II is a 30 mm chain gun manufactured by Alliant Techsystems. It is a derivative of the 25 mm M242 Bushmaster, and uses some 70% of the same parts as the M242 while increasing the firepower by as much as 50% with the 20% increase in caliber size. The barrel is chromium-plated for extended life. The gun uses standard GAU-8 Avenger ammunition that is available in API (Armor-Piercing Incendiary), HEI (High-Explosive Incendiary) and APFSDS-T (Armor-Piercing Fin-Stabilized Discarding Sabot-Tracer) variants. One interesting possibility is the ability of the gun to be converted to a caliber of 40 mm, which involves changing the barrel and a few key parts, to use the so-called Super 40 cartridge. It can also be converted to use the 30x170 mm RARDEN cartridge.
The Bushmaster II is the standard primary armament of Bionix-II AFV currently in service with the Singapore Army, the KTO Rosomak in Polish service as well as that of the CV90 AFVs in Finnish, Norwegian and Swiss service. Although the United States Air Force selected this cannon to replace the 25 mm and 40 mm guns on its fleet of AC-130U gunships in 2007, this plan was later canceled. The United States Marine Corps' Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, which has been cancelled, was expected to be armed with this cannon as well. Some United States Navy vessels, such as the new San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock are armed with the Bushmaster II for surface threat defense.
The USAF had experimented with installing Bushmaster II cannons on their AC-130U gunships in place of the GAU-12 and Bofors 40 mm cannons. On 11 August 2008, the effort was cancelled because of problems with the Bushmaster's accuracy in tests "at the altitude we were employing it." There were also schedule considerations that drove the decision. On 9 July 2012, the Air Force type classified a new version of the Bushmaster called the GAU-23/A. The cannon will be used on the AC-130W and the AC-130J gunships.
The XM813 Bushmaster is based on the Mk44 and is offered as an upgrade for M1126 Stryker and M2 Bradley vehicles, as well contending to be the primary armament of the GCV Infantry Fighting Vehicle. Improvements include a one inch longer barrel, integral mount to increase first round hit probability by up to 10 percent, and duel recoil system to enhance accuracy and cope with future hotter propellants. It can have a next-round select, linkless feed system. The 30 mm chain gun can fire Mk310 Programmable Air Burst Munition rounds to attack targets in defilade. The United States Army Research, Development and Engineering Command helped enhance the XM813 mainly for safety and turret integration. By changing 5 five parts, the gun caliber can be increased to 40 mm. As of November 2013, the XM813 is being tested at Aberdeen Proving Ground over three months to ensure reliability levels of 40,000 mean rounds between failures. Long-term plans are to equip vehicles with the Bushmaster III 50 mm cannon.
- Czech Republic
- Army: Pandur II CZ
- Army: CV9030
- Army: CV9030
- Army: KTO Rosomak
- Army: Pandur II
- Army: Bionix II
- Army: CV9030
- United Kingdom
- Navy: Type 23 frigate
- United States
- Bushmaster 25 mm chain gun
- Bushmaster III 35/50 mm chain gun
- 30mm Shipunov 2A42 - Soviet/Russian autocannon
- 30mm L21A1 RARDEN - British autocannon
- Future Combat Systems Infantry Carrier Vehicle
- "AIR FORCE CANCELS 30 MM CANNON PROGRAM FOR AC-130U GUNSHIPS - Inside the Air Force, 11 July 2008".
- Scott, Richard, ASCG enhances Type 23 close-in defence, International Defence Review, 30 October 2007.
- "Spooky Gun Swap Canceled". Air Force Magazine, October 2008, Volume 91, Number 10, p. 24.
- GAU-23 30mm Automatic Cannon Receives Type Classification - Prnewswire.com, July 9, 2012
- Bigger, badder Bushmaster cannon in the works - Armytimes.com, 8 November 2013
- , additional text.