Depleted Uranium Munitions - Rounds, Armor | 130mm | 30mm

Depleted Uranium Munitions – Rounds, Armor | 120mm | 30mm

Filed in Military , Tanks 12 comments

Depleted Uranium is a relatively recent development in military weapons and technology. Depleted Uranium is one of the heaviest elements on earth giving it tremendous power when coupled with ammunition. Depleted Uranium rounds are usually of a higher caliber such as the 120mm rounds fired out of the Abrams Tank, although 30mm rounds are also made for engaging light armored vehicles. DU is even being used in sniper ammunition for long range applications. Depleted Uranium technology allows ammunition to be shot much further than conventional munitions, and delivers a much more devastating payload. Tanks equipped with depleted uranium shells can easily compromise conventional armor from 3-5 K/m out. Due to its extreme density, depleted uranium is being used in Tank armor, as well as some other military vehicle’s armor including aircraft.

depleted uranium

The side effects of Depleted Uranium are being studied, but some research has shown signs of depleted uranium contributing to cancer rates in Iraq. After a DU shell is fired from a tank the radioactivity can spread for up to 190 miles in the wind. and has been found in water sources in Iraq.

Posted by Capt.   @   1 April 2007 12 comments
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May 24, 2007
12:08 am
#1 Ben :

DU is not very radioactive, its more that its toxic as heavy metal, also DU pyrotechnic ability to burn helps in penetration.

Oct 1, 2008
11:55 am
#2 oldgeek :

as Ben said, “DU is not very radioactive” – correct.
That’s why it’s called “depleted”, ‘cos the more radioactive part (U235) has been REMOVED, and so it ends up LESS radioactive.
Funny how greenies just can’t understand the true relationship between half-life and radioactive intensity, they always get it wrong way round. Short half-life = lots of activity per second, that means it’s highly radioactive. But a long half-life means more time is taken for same activity to take place, i.e. slower break-down, which just means LESS radioactive intensity.
Heavy-metal toxicity from DU could definitely be a problem, but we fired a lot of lead in earlier wars without side-effects being too obvious, except when stupid ducks kept chewing on lead shot ! ! !

May 20, 2009
6:57 pm
#3 vector :

the M1 Abrams tank has depleted uranium armor. is it the only tank with it?

Mar 31, 2010
9:42 pm
#4 kimmer6 :

So many of those rounds shown in the photo are not DU rounds. Generally the blue color denotes target ptactice, inert, or training ammunition. Of the small caliber rounds, I can see only a 30mm PGU 14B round that is DU. The tank rounds with the black discarding sabots are the ones that would be DU types. To show all kinds of multi purpose and training ammunition and call them all Depleted Uranium rounds is unfair. The mortar rounds and the submunitionsshown are also conventional explosives and would not contain DU.

May 18, 2010
3:37 pm
#5 Artimus Weisser :

Not very radiactive huh?! Go point a Geiger counter at the entry point of a tank that has been shelled by DU rounds then if you survive the cancers caused by Uranium dust come back and tell me that Depleted Uranium is not very radioactive! Depleted Uranium also contains small ammounts of Plutonium (as a by-product of nuclear fission) which is even more toxic than Uranium! We’re not talking about natural Uranium here this Uranium has been enriched then used in a reactor then made into ammunition making it far more radioactive than natural Uranium found in the ground! As long as people remain ignorant about the dangers of using DU in weapons than many more soldiers, innocent children and civilians are going to die! The point i’m trying to make is would you let someone store nuclear waste in your backyard, (I bet you answered no) then why fill someone elses backyard with your nuclear waste?!

Aug 12, 2011
6:56 am
#6 bryce1145 :

Artimus, if you do your homework you will learn that Depleted Uranium is a by-product of the Uranium enrichment process. The DU they use in bullets has never been in a nuclear reactor because it is not the correct isotope to allow fission to occur. DU is also commonly used as radiation shield barriers in medical equipment and for transporting radioactive materials. So no, it is not like dumping our nuclear waste in someone else’s backyard.

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