XM312

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XM312
XM312-04.jpg
Type Heavy machine gun
Place of origin United States
Production history
Designer General Dynamics/Joint Services Small Arms Program
Designed 2000
Manufacturer General Dynamics
Produced 2004
Variants XM307
Specifications
Weight 52 lb (19 kg)
Length 61.42 in (1,560 mm)
Barrel length 36 in (914 mm)
Width 9.84 in (250 mm)
Height 7 in (180 mm), 18 in (460 mm) adjustable tripod
Crew 2

Cartridge .50 BMG
Caliber 0.50 in (12.7 mm)
Action "Recoil-reducing action" (modified rotating bolt)
Rate of fire 260 rpm
Maximum firing range lethal and suppressive to 2,000 meters
Feed system Belt-fed
Sights Open, optics may be mounted.

The XM312 is a heavy machine gun derived from the XM307 25 mm autocannon and chambered for the .50 BMG cartridge. It was designed in response to a request by the U.S. military for a replacement for the aging M2HB heavy machine gun, and as a complement to the heavier XM307 Advanced Crew Served Weapon.

It is capable of being converted quickly into an XM307 with a small number of parts and a few minutes of work at the unit level (and vice versa from the XM307).[1] Procurement of the XM312 will allow easier use of the XM307, as only the related kits would have to be adopted.[2]

On May 20, 2008, Jane's Information Group reported that the U.S. Army had awarded General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products (GDATP) a 9 million dollar contract to develop a lightweight .50-caliber machine gun called the XM806 to supplement the Browning M2, but was cancelled in 2012.[3] The Army at present will continue buying new M2s and Mk 19s to replenish the current guns that are wearing out.[4]

Specifications[edit]

XM312-02.jpg
  • Weight:
    • 40 pounds (20 kg) max. (weapon only).[5]
    • 40 pounds (20 kg) max. (ground mount system).
  • Dimensions: 9.9W × 7.2H × 61.5L max. inches (251 mm × 183 mm × 1562 mm) (52.5L, 1334 mm) charged).
  • Portability: Man portable or vehicle mountable.
  • Stability: Up to 18 inch (460 mm) tripod height.
  • Operation: Currently a hybrid gas & recoil operating group. Gas powers the bolt mechanism while recoil drives the barrel/barrel extension and the feed system. Design changes are underway to totally eliminate the gas system to provide increased reliability and reduced complexity.
  • Environmental: Operationally insensitive to conditions.
  • Reliability: 6,000 MRBF (threshold) / 10,000 MRBF (objective).
  • Rate of fire:
    • 260 rounds per minute (4.3 Hz)(cyclic).[6]
    • 40 rounds per minute (0.7 Hz) (sustained, without barrel change). In burst of five to seven rounds, the same as the M2HB.
  • Dispersion: Less than 1.1 milliradian, one sigma radius.
  • Range: Lethal and suppressive out to 2,000 meters.
  • Ammunition: .50 BMG M33 ball, M8, M20 & Mk211 API, M903 SLAP.
  • Recoil: 300 foot-pounds (407 J)
  • Feed system: Weapon-mountable ammunition can or feed from any can using bellmouth attachment. M9 rear stripping link—common with current M2 ammunition. Left hand feed, right hand eject of cases and links.

Program status[edit]

  • September 2005: The XM312 is test fired by troops from the 1st Infantry Division at the Grafenwöhr Training Area in Germany.[7]

References[edit]

External links[edit]