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30 mm caliber

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Size comparison between 30×170mm and 5.56x45mm NATO

The 30 mm caliber is a range of autocannon ammunition. It includes the NATO standardized Swiss 30×173mm (STANAG 4624), the Soviet 30×155mmB, 30×165mm and 30×210mmB, the Czechoslovak 30×210mm, the Yugoslav 30×192mm, the British 30×113mmB, and the French 30×150mmB and 30×170mm cartridges.



Ammunition in 30 mm is typically not used against personnel but rather as an anti-materiel or armor-piercing round. Rounds of this size can be effective against lightly armored vehicles as well as fortified bunkers. It is also a popular caliber for shipboard close-in weapons systems (CIWS), such as the Russian AK-630 and Dutch Goalkeeper CIWS.

The Armed Forces of the Russian Federation use their 30 mm weapons in a variety of vehicles, including the Su-25 attack aircraft, Mi-24 helicopter, Mi-28 attack helicopter, Ka-50 attack helicopter, and the BMP-2, BMP-3, and BTR-90 infantry fighting vehicles. The most modern anti-aircraft gun systems in use by Russia are chambered in 30 mm.

The U.S. military uses 30 mm weapons in their A-10 Thunderbolt II ground-attack aircraft, AC-130 gunship (AC-130J Ghostrider variant), and AH-64 Apache attack helicopter. It was going to be used in the Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, until the project was canceled. The United States Navy uses 30 mm weapons on the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock and on Freedom and Independence-class littoral combat ships as part of the surface warfare (SuW) package.[1][2] In 2012, the Navy decided to replace the Mk 110 57 mm cannons on Zumwalt-class destroyers with the Mk 46 GWS.[3] The United States Coast Guard plans to install 30 mm weapons on the Polar Security Cutter[4]

Types of ammunition


30 mm calibre weapons are used in a variety of roles. As a result, ammunition in 30 mm comes in several varieties: armor-piercing (AP), high-explosive (HE), airburst, and target practice (TP) rounds. Both AP and HE cartridges commonly possess incendiary or tracer elements, which may be noted in its designation; API and HE-T are Armor-Piercing Incendiary and High-Explosive Tracer respectively.[5]



Current weapons

Cartridge Weapon Country of origin Designer Type Example platforms
30×29mmB AGS-17  Soviet Union OKB-16 Automatic grenade launcher BMD-3, BTR-90, BTR-D
AGS-30  Russia KBP Instrument Design Bureau Automatic grenade launcher BTR-T, GAZ-2975 Tigr, M2020 (tank)
30×113mmB M230  United States Hughes Chain gun Boeing AH-64 Apache, Oshkosh M-ATV
ADEN  United Kingdom Royal Small Arms Factory Revolver cannon English Electric Lightning,
Hawker Hunter, Saab Draken, SEPECAT Jaguar
VENOM LR 30  United Kingdom AEI Systems Revolver cannon Midgard 300 RWS, electro optic systems (EOS) R400 ROWS (prototype)
DEFA 550 series  France Direction des Études et Fabrications d'Armement Revolver cannon Dassault Mystere, Mirage series, Étendard series, SEPECAT Jaguar,
Fiat G.91, AMX International AMX
30 M 781  France GIAT Chain gun Eurocopter Tiger
XM188  United States General Electric Rotary cannon Bell AH-1 Cobra (prototype)
30×150mmB 30 M 791  France Nexter Revolver cannon Dassault Rafale
30×155mmB NR-30  Soviet Union Nudelman-Rikhter Short-recoil autocannon MiG-19, MiG-21, Su-7, Su-17, J-7
30×165mm GSh-30-1  Soviet Union Gryazev-Shipunov Short-recoil autocannon Sukhoi Su-27, Sukhoi Su-30, Sukhoi Su-35, Sukhoi Su-57, Mikoyan MiG-29
GSh-30-2  Soviet Union Gryazev-Shipunov Twin autocannon Sukhoi Su-25, Mil Mi-24P
GSh-6-30  Soviet Union Gryazev-Shipunov Rotary cannon MiG-27, Kortik CIWS
AK-630  Soviet Union TsKIB SOO Rotary cannon A-213-Vympel-A CIWS
2A42  Soviet Union KBP Instrument Design Bureau Gas-operated autocannon BMP-2, BMD-2, BMD-3, BMD-4), Kurganets-25, T-15 Armata, Mil Mi-28, Kamov Ka-50, BTR-90
Shipunov 2A72 [ru]  Soviet Union KBP Instrument Design Bureau Long-recoil autocannon BMP-3 (also in BRM-3K version), BMD-4, BTR-82A, Uran-9
2A38  Russia KBP Instrument Design Bureau Twin anti-aircraft gas-operated autocannon 2K22 Tunguska, Pantsir-S
CRN 91  India Ordnance Factory Medak Light naval gun Trinkat-class patrol vessel, Kumbhir-class landing ship,
Car Nicobar-class fast attack craft
Type 730/1130  China 713th Research Institute Gatling gun Type 052C destroyer,
Type 001A aircraft carrier, LD-2000
30×170mm HS.831A  France Hispano-Suiza Gas-unlocked delayed-blowback autocannon AMX-30 DCA
HS.831L / Oerlikon KCB  France /  Switzerland Hispano-Suiza / Oerlikon Falcon anti-aircraft system, DS30B rapid-fire ship-protection system
L21A1 RARDEN  United Kingdom Royal Armament Research and Development Establishment/
Royal Small Arms Factory, Enfield
Long-recoil autocannon FV721 Fox, FV107 Scimitar,
FV510 Warrior
30×173mm (STANAG 4624) KCA  Switzerland Oerlikon Revolver cannon Saab 37 Viggen
GAU-8 Avenger  United States General Electric Gatling gun Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II, Signaal Goalkeeper CIWS
Mk44 Bushmaster II  United States Alliant Techsystems Chain gun KTO Rosomak, CV9030,
M1296 Stryker Dragoon, Lockheed AC-130J, Hateruma-class patrol vessel
Mk30  Germany Rheinmetall Automatic cannon Boxer CRV, ASCOD, SPz Puma,
30mm/82 Compact, Lynx KF41
EMAK 30  South Africa Denel Land Systems Linkless cam gun Badger
Maadi Griffin  United States Robert Stewart Prototype anti-materiel rifle Maadi Griffin
30mm X-GUN  Italy Leonardo Automatic Cannon
Wotan 30  Germany Rheinmetall Automatic cannon Lynx KF41
GTS-30/N  Slovakia ZŤS – ŠPECIÁL Gas-operated autocannon
30×210mmB NN-30  Soviet Union Tulamashzavod Twin revolver cannon AK-230 light naval gun/CIWS
30×210mm vz.53/59  Czechoslovakia Praga Hostivař Twin anti-aircraft autocannon M53/59 Praga
30×250mm caseless RMK30  Germany Mauser Recoilless revolver cannon Wiesel AWC (experimental),
Eurocopter Tiger UH (experimental)

Historical weapons

Weapon Country of origin Designer Cartridge Type Example platforms
MK 108  Nazi Germany Rheinmetall-Borsig 30×90mmRB Autocannon Messerschmitt Bf 109 G-6, Messerschmitt Bf 110 G-2,
Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-8/R2, Messerschmitt Me 262
Type 2  Japanese Empire Dai-Nippon Weapons Co., Ltd. 30×92mmRB Blowback autocannon Mitsubishi J2M (prototype)
Ho-155  Japanese Empire Nagoya Arsenal 30×114mm Autocannon Nakajima Ki-84-I Hei,
Kawasaki Ki-102c Hei
Type 5  Japanese Empire Nihon Tokushuko 30×122mm Autocannon Yokosuka P1Y, Kyushu J7W,
Mitsubishi J2M (planned)
NR-30  Soviet Union A.E. Nudelman and A.A. Rikhter 30×155mmB Autocannon MiG-19, MiG-21, Sukhoi Su-7,
Sukhoi Su-17
MK 101  Nazi Germany Rheinmetall-Borsig 30×184mmB Autocannon Henschel Hs 129,
Heinkel He 177A-1/U2 (experimental)
MK 103  Nazi Germany Rheinmetall-Borsig Electrically primed autocannon Focke-Wulf Fw 190,
Flakpanzer IV Kugelblitz
MK 303  Nazi Germany Krieghoff 30×210mm Anti-aircraft autocannon Type XXI submarine

See also



  1. ^ Mk-46 GWS Archived 2 November 2014 at the Wayback Machine - Seaforces.org
  2. ^ Navy Orders Six More General Dynamics Littoral Combat Ship MK46 Mod 2 Gun Weapon Systems Archived 2 November 2014 at the Wayback Machine - Guns.com, 21 March 2013
  3. ^ Navy Swaps Out Anti-Swarm Boat Guns on DDG-1000s Archived 31 October 2014 at the Wayback Machine - News.USNI.org, 5 August 2014
  4. ^ Ong, Peter (2022-04-21). "USGC's Polar Security Cutters to Receive Mark 38 Mod 4 Guns". Naval News. Retrieved 2022-04-24.
  5. ^ "Medium calibre ammunition". rheinmetall.com. Rheinmetall. Retrieved 26 September 2023.