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Centurion_D
06-26-2010, 12:05 PM
Looks like the U.S. military has upgraded the M855 ammo...wondering how it will perform in real world combat. Gotta wait and see.

http://www.military.com/news/article/army-news/green-ammo-heads-to-afghanistan-.html

'Green Ammo' Heads to Afghanistan

June 24, 2010

http://images.military.com/cs/Satellite?blobcol=urldata&blobheadername1=Content-Type&blobheadername2=Content-Disposition&blobheadervalue1=image%2Fjpeg&blobheadervalue2=inline%3Bfilename%3DGreenAmmo0624 10.jpg&blobkey=id&blobnocache=false&blobtable=MungoBlobs&blobwhere=1209987526422&ssbinary=true

Army News Service

PICATINNY ARSENAL, N.J. - The Army announced it has begun shipping its new 5.56mm cartridge, the M855A1 Enhanced Performance Round, to support warfighters in Afghanistan.

The new M855A1 round is sometimes referred to as "green ammo."

The new round replaces the current M855 5.56mm cartridge that has been used by U.S. troops since the early 1980s.

The M855A1 resulted in a number of significant enhancements not found in the current round, officials said. They explained these include improved hard-target capability, more dependable, consistent performance at all distances, improved accuracy, reduced muzzle flash and a higher velocity.

During testing, the M855A1 performed better than current 7.62mm ball ammunition against certain types of targets, blurring the performance differences that previously separated the two rounds.

The projectile incorporates these improvements without adding weight or requiring additional training.

According to Lt. Col. Jeffrey K. Woods, the program's product manager, the projectile is "the best general purpose 5.56mm round ever produced."

Woods said its fielding represents the most significant advancement in general purpose small caliber ammunition in decades.

The Enhanced Performance Round contains an environmentally-friendly projectile that eliminates up to 2,000 tons of lead from the manufacturing process each year in direct support of Army commitment to environmental stewardship.

Woods said the effort is a clear example of how "greening" a previously hazardous material can also provide extremely beneficial performance improvements.

Picatinny Arsenal's Project Manager for Maneuver Ammunition Systems manages the M855A1 program.

Project Manager Chris Grassano called the fielding "the culmination of an Army enterprise effort by a number of organizations, particularly the Army Research Laboratory, Armament Research Development and Engineering Center, Program Executive Office for Ammunition and the Joint Munitions Command.

"The Army utilized advanced science, modeling and analysis to produce the best 5.56mm round possible for the warfighter," he said.

The M855A1 is tailored for use in the M-4 weapon system but also improves the performance of the M-16 and M-249 families of weapons.

A true general-purpose round, the M855A1 exceeds the performance of the current M855 against the many different types of targets likely to be encountered in combat.

Prior to initial production, the EPR underwent vigorous testing. Official qualification of the round consisted of a series of side-by-side tests with the current M855.

Overall, the Army fired more than 1 million rounds to ensure the new cartridge met or exceeded all expectations. The M855A1 is without question the most thoroughly tested small caliber round ever fielded, Woods said.

The Army has recently completed the Limited Rate Initial Production phase for the M855A1 and is beginning the follow-on full rate production phase where plans are to procure more than 200 millions rounds over the next 12-15 months.

The M855A1 Enhanced Performance Round is the first environmentally-friendly bullet resulting from a larger "greening" effort across the Army's Small Caliber Ammunition programs. Other greening efforts include 5.56mm tracer, 7.62mm ball and green primers.

Soldiers in Afghanistan will begin using the new, improved round this summer.

Blownmotor
06-26-2010, 12:23 PM
So when can we buy some?

NiteQwill
06-26-2010, 12:33 PM
Lake City will produce enough for military and civilian use I'm sure.

shadowofnight
06-26-2010, 12:38 PM
I would like to give some a try :)


http://www.knowfar.org.cn/html/news/uploadfiles/2009-09/200909181008370781.jpg

rojocorsa
06-26-2010, 12:41 PM
Is this tungsten? Because exposure to that ain't good for human either. Not at all....

santacruzstefan
06-26-2010, 12:48 PM
I want some... hey, you'd be able to get around the lead ban too!

Jpach
06-26-2010, 12:55 PM
Oh crap. I may have just found some cool bunny killing ammo. Kinda seems like a ballistic tip, I wonder if it will kinda work like that. Any idea how soft that Bismuth-Tin alloy is?

problemchild
06-26-2010, 1:05 PM
I wonder if the inventor will win the Nobel Peace Prize? I think its awesome that we now have a green bullet for killing people.

Milsurps
06-26-2010, 1:14 PM
we now have a green bullet for killing people.

+1 for a Green death ... :rofl2:

nrakid88
06-26-2010, 1:55 PM
WOW, I am dieing for some ballistic gelatin studies

Centurion_D
06-26-2010, 2:07 PM
Actually I would love to have a couple of thousand rounds of this stuff..the Marines seem to like it.

http://accurateshooter.wordpress.com/2010/02/17/usmc-adopts-new-open-tip-sost-5-56-ammo/

USMC Adopts New Open-tip ‘SOST’ 5.56 Ammo
Filed under: Bullets, Brass, Ammo,New Product,News — Tags: USMC, Afghanistan, Ball Ammo, M855, SOST, SOCOM — Editor @ 10 am

http://accurateshooter.net/Blog/sostammo01.png

After learning that M855 NATO ammo does not perform well from short-barreled rifles such as the M4 carbine, the U.S. Marine Corps has started issuing a new type of 5.56×45 ammo to its troops in Afghanistan. The new SOST (Special Operations Science and Technology) ammo, officially designated MK 318 MOD 0 “Cartridge, Caliber 5.56mm Ball, Carbine, Barrier”, features a different open-tip 62mm bullet. The new bullet, with a lead core (in the top half) and solid copper bottom half, is similar to hunting bullets such as Federal’s Trophy Bonded Bear Claw. The SOST bullet was designed by Federal/ATK, which will produce the loaded ammunition.

SOST 5.56 ammo

The new SOST ammo was first developed for use by SOCOM (Special Operations) in the SCAR rifle, which has a short, 13.8″ barrel. Even in short-barreled rifles, the SOST provides impressive ballistics — achieving 2925 fps in a 14″ barrel. Compared to M855 ball ammo, SOST rounds are more lethal when shot from short-barreled rifles. According to the Marine Times, SOST ammunition delivers “consistent, rapid fragmentation which shortens the time required to cause incapacitation of enemy combatants”. Using an open-tip design common with some sniper ammunition, SOST rounds are designed to be “barrier blind”, meaning they stay on target better than existing M855 rounds after penetrating windshields, car doors and other objects. This is important to troops in the Middle Eastern theater who must engage insurgents inside vehicles or hiding behind barriers.

In Afghanistan, the USMC will issue SOST ammo for both the short-barreled M4 carbine as well as the original, full-length M16A4. The Corps purchased a “couple million” SOST rounds as part of a joint $6 million, 10.4-million-round buy in September — enough to last the service several months in Afghanistan.

M855 Criticized by Ground Troops and Pentagon Testers
The standard Marine 5.56 round, the M855, was developed in the 1970s and approved as an official NATO round in 1980. In recent years, however, it has been the subject of widespread criticism from troops, who question whether it has enough punch to stop oncoming enemies.

In 2002, shortcomings in the M855′s performance were detailed in a report by Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane, Ind., according to Navy Department documents. Additional testing in 2005 showed shortcomings. The Pentagon issued a request to industry for improved ammunition the following year.

thayne
06-26-2010, 3:00 PM
I want some of that ammo! :D

thayne
06-26-2010, 3:01 PM
Is this tungsten? Because exposure to that ain't good for human either. Not at all....
According to the diagram its steel on top and tin alloy on the bottom with a copper jacket

yock
06-26-2010, 3:16 PM
I want to know some more about them, grain? I googled it but nothing more than what is already on here :(

faterikcartman
06-26-2010, 3:25 PM
Longer probably means a better ballistic coefficient as well.

yock
06-26-2010, 3:34 PM
I found it! on the high road.

Compared with the M855, SOST rounds also stay on target longer in open air and have increased stopping power, according to Navy Department documents obtained by Marine Corps Times.

At 62 grains, they weigh about the same as most NATO rounds, have a typical lead core with a solid copper shank and are considered a variation of Federal Cartridge Co.’s Federal Trophy Bonded Bear Claw round, which was developed for big-game hunting and is touted in a company news release for its ability to crush bone.

AlliedArmory
06-26-2010, 3:40 PM
nice. I need to try me some

Maddog5150
06-26-2010, 4:12 PM
I read a big article about this in the Army times. The article stated big issues with lack of stopping power of the new "green" ammo compared to the Marine Corps SOST round. Unfortunately the Army wants to go "green" to keep the tree hugging hippies happy. According to the article, there are even ranges in the US where the Army cant shoot at thier own ranges because of the lead :rolleyes:

thayne
06-26-2010, 4:40 PM
I think I'll go with the Marine ammo :D

thayne
06-26-2010, 4:42 PM
So are they saying M855 performs well in full length rifles, but not in M-4's?

NiteQwill
06-26-2010, 5:01 PM
So are they saying M855 performs well in full length rifles, but not in M-4's?

The M855 performs well enough in all platforms from 14.5 to 20. Although M855 will be replaced eventually, the Army isn't looking for rapid fielding of the ammo as "critical," (like they did with armored vehicles, for example) the M855 currently used throughout will suffice.

Jpach
06-26-2010, 5:04 PM
I wonder if the inventor will win the Nobel Peace Prize? I think its awesome that we now have a green bullet for killing people.

Lol but the inventor actually DID something, not just hope and cross his fingers that this bullet will be "green" and rid the world of nuclear weapons as a result.

tiger222
06-26-2010, 6:24 PM
the double cone design looks very much like the German Army's ammo iirc, not that they shoot alot of people these days, but no complaints from the G36K's which have a 12.5" bbl.

Look forward to trying some out, though M193 is still probably the best all around ammo, out of a 1/12 bbl :)

Retzius
06-26-2010, 6:49 PM
Cool.

Now we can kill and be "green".

When will this PC crap stop..

Mac
06-26-2010, 8:37 PM
I will have to try some of those Bear claws. Take a few apart.
No terminal ballistic data on the m855A1?
Test barrel Velocity? Powder? I hate those non technical press blurbs.

Anchors
06-27-2010, 1:32 AM
I wonder if the inventor will win the Nobel Peace Prize? I think its awesome that we now have a green bullet for killing people.

I laughed out loud at this :rofl2:

1988
06-27-2010, 2:13 AM
I would like to give some a try :)


http://www.knowfar.org.cn/html/news/uploadfiles/2009-09/200909181008370781.jpg

That looks like a 3-piece fragmentation design .... Jacket separation and core breakup at the border.

I can't wait to see the gel test results. Any one has it ?

tvfreakarms
06-27-2010, 2:17 AM
Hope a regular folk like me is able to buy them. I would like to try these ammo out in my AR. I wonder why they dont just us a 64gr instead of 62? It would give it a little more stopping power.

But some thing tells me it's going to be expensive. I don't mind if they are going green. I think it's a good thing but at the same time going "GREEN" = more "MULLA".:( And I know i don't have that type of mulla to spend.

Hayashi Killian
06-27-2010, 10:18 AM
Oh crap. I may have just found some cool bunny killing ammo. Kinda seems like a ballistic tip, I wonder if it will kinda work like that. Any idea how soft that Bismuth-Tin alloy is?
Tin's added in a lot of alloys to increase the tensile strength of it. The Romans realized this long ago when they added tin to their copper (as weapons and armor made from it were great, but more often than not they'd have to stop in the middle of battle and re-straighten their weapons) and made bronze. Zinc also works (used a lot in brass), but it's more expensive and heavier.

Super Spy
06-28-2010, 5:37 PM
I'll take it!

tteng
06-28-2010, 7:35 PM
Being a mechanical engineer and knew a little about dynamics, this is what I can tell about the SOST and M855A1, though I'm not a bullet expert,

M855A1:
The steel tip is a kinetic round- to retain its shape & kinetic energy while penetrating hard body armor. This is probably designed against conventional foes, much like our soldiers, wearing plates. To replace lead(density: 11.3g/cm3) w/ steel(7.8g/cm3) and bismuth(10g/cm3)/tin, the bullet has to be longer. If it's all steel, it is too long to fit the magazine. The bismuth is to make up enough weight, along w/ additional length, so the bullet is about the same weight as M855. The tin is added so the bottom half of bullet is strong enough not to distort from the torque imparted from the rifling. The separation between the steel and copper jacket is probably due to manufacturing process; the contour of the steel head probably adds cohesiveness of steel head and its copper so it wouldn't separate during initial torque. Looking from the picture, the center-of-mass is probably at the crimp-line. The elongated(more symmetric) form also means the bullet stays stable longer during flight (its principal axes coincides closely w/ its rotational axes) . Against a soft target, this is a ice pick and probably will go right through.

SOST:
With its forward center-of-mass (when compare to M855), it'll punch through barrier (not too hard) better and hit the soft target behind it. However, against plate-wearing foe, I don't see how it'll work. So, this is probably designed for against insurgent, not conventional foes who're wearing plates. It looks less stable, again bec. of its forward center-mass, during flight- so it's for close-up work.

Very interesting: two design philosophy, against two different foes.

cineski
06-29-2010, 8:09 AM
Lots more lead avail for us civies!

turbogg
06-29-2010, 8:46 AM
Being a mechanical engineer and knew a little about dynamics, this is what I can tell about the SOST and M855A1, though I'm not a bullet expert,

M855A1:
The steel tip is a kinetic round- to retain its shape & kinetic energy while penetrating hard body armor. This is probably designed against conventional foes, much like our soldiers, wearing plates. To replace lead(density: 11.3g/cm3) w/ steel(7.8g/cm3) and bismuth(10g/cm3)/tin, the bullet has to be longer. If it's all steel, it is too long to fit the magazine. The bismuth is to make up enough weight, along w/ additional length, so the bullet is about the same weight as M855. The tin is added so the bottom half of bullet is strong enough not to distort from the torque imparted from the rifling. The separation between the steel and copper jacket is probably due to manufacturing process; the contour of the steel head probably adds cohesiveness of steel head and its copper so it wouldn't separate during initial torque. Looking from the picture, the center-of-mass is probably at the crimp-line. The elongated(more symmetric) form also means the bullet stays stable longer during flight (its principal axes coincides closely w/ its rotational axes) . Against a soft target, this is a ice pick and probably will go right through.

SOST:
With its forward center-of-mass (when compare to M855), it'll punch through barrier (not too hard) better and hit the soft target behind it. However, against plate-wearing foe, I don't see how it'll work. So, this is probably designed for against insurgent, not conventional foes who're wearing plates. It looks less stable, again bec. of its forward center-mass, during flight- so it's for close-up work.

Very interesting: two design philosophy, against two different foes.

Wow. Thanks for your interesting technical assessment of this "new" round.

civilsnake
06-29-2010, 1:55 PM
"Green" ammo is an emerging market. Leadless primers, sintered copper projectiles. Hell, even TMJ rounds are marketed for health reasons.

DannyZRC
06-29-2010, 2:13 PM
all this money wasted on 5.56

what it does well, it does well already, and what it doesn't do well it won't no matter how many greenbacks you throw at it.

boo.

nick
06-29-2010, 2:38 PM
Tin's added in a lot of alloys to increase the tensile strength of it. The Romans realized this long ago when they added tin to their copper (as weapons and armor made from it were great, but more often than not they'd have to stop in the middle of battle and re-straighten their weapons) and made bronze. Zinc also works (used a lot in brass), but it's more expensive and heavier.

Just FYI, bronze was invented over 3000 years before Rome was even founded. Romans used iron or steel for their weapons.

Jason_2111
06-29-2010, 2:40 PM
Can't wait to try some of these out...

If anyone finds a source, please let me know!

What Just Happened?
06-29-2010, 3:13 PM
all this money wasted on 5.56

-1

Money is never wasted on ammo.

KaLiFORNIA
06-29-2010, 10:20 PM
So are we going to be able to buy M855A1 or SOST?:confused:

smarter
06-29-2010, 10:42 PM
awesome that mean military surplus of ammo.. i hope...

Maddog5150
06-30-2010, 6:11 AM
awesome that mean military surplus of ammo.. i hope...

Doubt it. The old round is being phased out not replaced.

GearHead
06-30-2010, 10:53 AM
awesome that mean military surplus of ammo.. i hope...

Not for US citizens. President Clinton made it illegal to surplus US ammo to US citizens.

John Sukey
06-30-2010, 11:06 AM
Funny, I thought military ammunition was meant to KILL people, NOT to be "green".
Maybe we should draft the tree huggers and put them in harm's way.

1lostinspace
07-02-2010, 1:30 PM
I wonder if they are made to frag better then M855. Unless your doing 2700 FPS you will not get frag out of M855

TangoCharlie
07-02-2010, 8:35 PM
Being a mechanical engineer and knew a little about dynamics, this is what I can tell about the SOST and M855A1, though I'm not a bullet expert,

M855A1:
The steel tip is a kinetic round- to retain its shape & kinetic energy while penetrating hard body armor. This is probably designed against conventional foes, much like our soldiers, wearing plates. To replace lead(density: 11.3g/cm3) w/ steel(7.8g/cm3) and bismuth(10g/cm3)/tin, the bullet has to be longer. If it's all steel, it is too long to fit the magazine. The bismuth is to make up enough weight, along w/ additional length, so the bullet is about the same weight as M855. The tin is added so the bottom half of bullet is strong enough not to distort from the torque imparted from the rifling. The separation between the steel and copper jacket is probably due to manufacturing process; the contour of the steel head probably adds cohesiveness of steel head and its copper so it wouldn't separate during initial torque. Looking from the picture, the center-of-mass is probably at the crimp-line. The elongated(more symmetric) form also means the bullet stays stable longer during flight (its principal axes coincides closely w/ its rotational axes) . Against a soft target, this is a ice pick and probably will go right through.

SOST:
With its forward center-of-mass (when compare to M855), it'll punch through barrier (not too hard) better and hit the soft target behind it. However, against plate-wearing foe, I don't see how it'll work. So, this is probably designed for against insurgent, not conventional foes who're wearing plates. It looks less stable, again bec. of its forward center-mass, during flight- so it's for close-up work.

Very interesting: two design philosophy, against two different foes.

I think you illustrate the difference very well.

The M855A1 is an attempt to improve the soft-target performance that is severely lacking in the M855, all while keeping it's hard target capability. The M855 has questionable lethality in Iraq and Afghanistan because it's intent is to pass through Soviet body armor on the way to soft tissue.

The SOST round does not have the same hard target performance requirement as the M855A1, so it's soft-target performance will be superior.

The Marines seem to know exactly who they are fighting today...