Marines Perform M777 Field Demonstrations


Released on Thursday, January 20, 2005
United States of America
C-130H Hercules
M198
M777A2
MV-22B Osprey
kg - kilograms
USMC - United States Marine Corps
The US Marine Corps demonstrated the M777 155mm lightweight howitzer to local officials at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Training on the M777 weapon system is being conducted at Fort Sill by personnel coming from the 3rd battalion, 11th Marine regiment stationed at Twentynine Palms, California, which is expected to be the first unit equipped with.

The M777 will be deployed with the US Marine Corps and the Army providing critical fire support to Marine Air Ground Task Forces and Army Brigade Combat Teams and light divisions. The M777 incorporates, for the first time, extensive use of titanium castings and will replace the 155mm M198 howitzer. It is lightweight, only 9,000-lb (4,000 kg) compared to M198's 15,700-lb (7,000 kg), to be transported by C-130-sized fixed-wing aircraft or MV-22 tiltrotor.

Overall, titanium castings allow to reduce 7,000-lb (3,000 kg) of weight which improves mobility and transportability features for the resulting weapon system. Weapon range performance and ammunition capacity remains unchanged compared to M198. The weapon will be assembled by BAE Systems at Hattiesburg, Mississippi, with more than 70 percent components fabricated in the United States.

The M777 program completed operational testing at Twentynine Palms in early 2005, with more than 12,000 rounds fired by four howitzers. The program now stands ready to receive the first full rate production order anticipated in February 2005. Fielding of the weapon with the Army and USMC is expected to be completed by 2009.

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