PAPOP

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Poly-Arme Polyprojectile
PAPOP 1 and 2.svg
PAPOP-1 (top) and 2 (bottom)
Place of origin  France
Service history
In service Prototype
Production history
Designer GIAT
Designed July 1995 [1]
Manufacturer GIAT
Unit cost 3000 Euros [2]
Produced Canceled
Specifications
Weight

5.5 kg unloaded[2]

7 kg with ammunition
Length 830 mm
Width 120 mm
Height 30 mm
Diameter 5.56 mm
30 mm

Calibre 5.56 NATO
35mm
Muzzle velocity 1500 to 1800 m/s
Effective firing range 600 metres
Feed system removable magazine
Sights targeting computer
Filling weight 43g

The PAPOP (PolyArme POlyProjectiles, "multi-projectile multi-weapon") is a French project to construct a computerised multi-usage infantry weapon for the FÉLIN system, capable of hitting hidden or protected targets. It combines a 35 mm grenade launcher with a 5.56 NATO assault rifle, both in a bullpup configuration, complete with targeting aids.

History[edit]

The PAPOP project aims at providing, by 2010 or 2012, a versatile weapon capable of engaging enemy infantry, even protected, with a range of up to 600 metres.

An industrial partnership was set up to answer the request, GIAT being the main contractor. The subsystems are designed by FN Herstal (for the assault rifle), Sfim ODS (targeting system), Euroimpact and Lacroix (grenades).

Phase 1[edit]

A first prototype was proposed with 3 grenades in an internal tubular magazine. The prototype was deemed too heavy (8 kg) and bulky to be acceptable, which led to the design of a second prototype.

Phase 2[edit]

The second prototype aimed at correcting the issues of the first one, reducing the weight to 6 kg and making the whole system more compact. A particular emphasis was put on usability in urban warfare.

The PAPOP-2 carries 25 5.56 mm cartridges and only two grenades, though a platoon-level configuration allows carrying 5 grenades, at the expense of the weight which then rises to 10 kg.[3]

Systems[edit]

1. Assault rifle (5.56 mm)
2. Grenade launcher
3. Orientable screen
4. Camera
5. Laser designator and telemeter
6. Batteries and computer
7. Weapon selector

Sub-calibre 5.56mm rifle[edit]

The rifle fires sub-calibre ammunition with a 5.56 NATO sabot with a muzzle velocity of 1500 to 1800 metres per second. The new ammunition offers an enhanced range, and increases the penetrability enough to defeat individual armour of the PASGT type even at great distance.[3]

Grenade launcher[edit]

The second tube is a semi-automatic 35 mm grenade launcher with programmable shells. A large selector switches from rifle to grenade.

Three grenades are carried in a tubular magazine. They can be programmed to explode near the target, with two selectable yields; pre-cut fragments can be projected either towards the front, the side or the rear of the projectile, depending on how the charge is activated, which are lethal in a 5-metre radius. The 35 mm calibre was selected as to offer capabilities to penetrate flak vests.[3]

Electronic systems[edit]

A camera is fitted in the nose of the weapon, under the rifle muzzle. Batteries and the on-board computer are located in the stock. A rotating LCD screen on the top of the weapon displays information, allowing aiming the PAPOP from behind cover and "firing across the corners".

The targeting system includes night vision, a laser telemeter, and an IFF[4] and a targeting computer which also programmes the grenades prior to launch.

The FÉLIN concept requires that data from the weapon could be shared with the other electronic component of the soldier, and transmitted across the battlefield to command posts or information centres. The PAPOP is thus a component of a larger integrated system, usable for reconnaissance or target designation.

Sources and references[edit]