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Osprey to Deploy With New Firepower

by Ward Carroll on May 8, 2009

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The Marine Corps is taking the Osprey to its fight in Afghanistan and its a more lethal version than the MV-22 the Corps top aviation officer credited with helping tame Iraqs Anbar province.

Pending successful testing, the Corps plans to deploy a contingent of recently developed weapons system kits that will provide the MV-22 Osprey with 360-degree firepower, according to Lt. Gen. George J. Trautman III, deputy commandant for aviation.

But Trautman confessed the Corps wont rack up body counts with the new weapon, which is defensive in nature, designed for fire suppression during high-speed infil and exfil missions.

I wouldnt expect to kill a lot of people with this system, Trautman said. Its a very difficult challenge without sophisticated fire control technology to be precise in your targeting.

The Corps has ordered nine of the so-called Remote Guardian System kits, but hopes to buy scores more to outfit the entire fleet of MV-22 aircraft. The 7.62mm rotary cannon in the RGS is mounted in the belly of an Osprey and is controlled by a crewman with a video game-like joystick and video monitor.

The service is also working to upgrade the Ospreys ramp-mounted machine gun to a .50 caliber version from its current M240 7.62mm machine gun.

The Osprey, Trautman boasts, will redefine the Afghan battle space where Leathernecks tangle with insurgent and Taliban forces in small units separated by 8,000-foot snow-capped mountains and vast rocky badlands.

Were incredibly confident [that] having the Osprey in that environment is going to pay dividends for our forces, and thats why we are intently focused on getting the aircraft into that theater, he said during an interview with military bloggers.

Trautman said the Corps aim is to deploy a handful of RGS detachable mission kits armed with surveillance capabilities on an MV-22 squadron bound for Afghanistans harsh environment this fall.

Thousands of Marines are expected to join in the increased American troop presence in Afghanistan following President Barack Obamas call for 10,000 more boots and rifles to wrest control from a resurgent Taliban.

Trautmans announcement follows the completion of months of testing by the Air Force Special Operations Command on the BAE Systems mission kits, which now gives the aircraft what many critics said it lacked from the beginning: an all-quadrant gun.

Both AFSOC and the Corps hope the new weapons package will enhance an aircraft that Trautman described as marvelously successful after 19 months in Iraq.

The performance thus far tells us that the aircraft completed every assigned mission and it did so flying faster, farther and with safer flight profiles than any other assault aircraft in the history of military operations, Trautman said.

Dogged by controversy and fatalities during its decades-long development and testing, the Osprey has apparently emerged tougher and smarter for its trials and is delivering Marines significant advantages over its predecessor in the CH-46 Sea Knight. And the new kit will now silence critics who have long called for an all-quadrant weapon for the aircraft.

Theres a reason we havent put an all-aspect weapon on the Osprey in the last decade, Trautman said. Its a tough technical challenge and has taken us a while to figure it out in an affordable way.

Trautman acknowledged that readiness issues brought on by environmental factors fine Iraqi dust hampered the Ospreys three combat tours in Iraq, but he said a refined system should help ensure replacements are in place downrange when critical components fail.

In Afghanistan, the Ospreys Gatling gun will join another new detachable weapons package as the Corps plans to introduce a slightly different weapons portfolio to its KC-130J Super Hercules refueler-transports.

Dubbed Harvest Hawk, the KC-130J may incorporate up to three weapons as well as a sophisticated surveillance system. The Corps is exploring including four wing-based Hellfire missiles, rear ramp-based precision munitions and a paratroop door-positioned cannon to the aircraft.

Both the MV-22 and KC-130J weapons packages are roll-on/roll-off kits that can be affixed to the aircraft in upwards of six hours. They are both manned by a dedicated crewman positioned in the rear of the cabin who operates a fire-control system that combines the video feeds and weapons control.

Trautman said the weapons portfolio will be used much like a helicopter crew, in which the pilot spots a target and talks the fire-control operator onto the target.

Trautman expects the speed and range of the MV-22 will help turn Texas into Rhode Island for Marine commanders in Afghanistans vast expanses, much like the Osprey did in Iraq.

– Bryan Mitchell

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{ 39 comments… read them below or add one }

Jeff M May 8, 2009 at 12:29 pm

This is great! Combined with the right tactics, this will be a very effect way to approach the enemy dug in to ridges.

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Byron Skinner May 8, 2009 at 12:42 pm

Good Morning Folks,
Much to do about very little. This is PURELY a defensive measure so that is a CV-22 finds itself in a hot zone it can contribute to it’s own defense.
The system that it’s replacing the “Old CH-46″ sported two M2HB’s, cal, .50 BMG’s, which makes a bigger contribution to a fire fight then a single M-240, 7.62mm.
The best thing to with the uber expensive CV-22 is to keep it out of HOT landing zones, it’s a flying truck not a fighter.
ALLONS,
Byron Skinner

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Schrott May 8, 2009 at 1:00 pm

It’s about time. At least our boys will have something to bring to the fight other than a M-3 .50cal shooting out it’s ass. the only covering fire it can do is when it’s leaving the fight…the RGS can hose hostiles down on it’s way in and on it’s way out, with percision.

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Wild Bill May 8, 2009 at 1:23 pm

Looks like a scoop to me. “Grand Ole Osprey” very clever. Thanks!

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Schrott May 8, 2009 at 1:24 pm

Let me clarify “percision” before i have to hear it from Mr. Skinner… If you can put a lot of lead into a targeted area, while coming in hot, i’d call that “percision”. It may not be as accurate as a RND Edge but it doesn’t need to be.

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Musterion May 8, 2009 at 1:52 pm

How easy/hard would it be to up armor the bird and make it Spectre-like (AC-130)?

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flying fart proudly joyned May 8, 2009 at 3:02 pm

old idea.. see german FLW-200. dont know about software or sensors but the robot looks like it will make huge mechanical problems aside that it looks heavy and will cost half of osprey himself.. gatling gun on Osprey? lol.. whats about shakemedead-compensation for the gun? whats about “power is out, you do it by the hand”?

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Mongo May 8, 2009 at 3:54 pm

I’ve heard that the Osprey has to give up four seats in its cabin in order to fit the equipment for this turret inside. Anybody know if that’s true? Plus, will the new .50 cal interfere with loading and unloading troops?

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Marcase May 8, 2009 at 5:02 pm

Nice idea, but fire-suppression means putting steel on target(s). A Gatlin runs out of bullets really fast, and with that single ammo-box you’re jackpot in four-something seconds: how are you going to reload it when it is stuck outside of the Osprey ? (no, it’s not accessible through the floor…)
Auto-track is nice though.

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Patriot93 May 8, 2009 at 5:53 pm

I’m glad they finally armed this great bird. However, I’m sort of let down by the choice of weapon system. A 7.62 minigun does not seem like enough for fire supression plus the fact or most likely limited ammo. I like the idea of replacing the M240 with a .50 cal though. Anyways, another interesting option could be the GAU-19 or the M230 Chain Gun but it won’t happen. Also the statement of defense over instead of offense, I would personally prefer a weapon that could lay lead on target and mow down the targets if landing in a Hot LZ.

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Hunter May 8, 2009 at 6:22 pm

Sounds like the Marines are planning on using the ‘Harvest Hawk’ to really keep heads down.

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Peter Buckton May 8, 2009 at 8:42 pm

I am pretty sure… 7.62mm does not a cannon make.
20mm would!

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flying fart proudly joyned May 9, 2009 at 3:38 am

About heavy calibers. its not a flying tank its the marines mule. They dont need armor-piercing ,50 howitzer, just a 25 mm grenade launcher will do.

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Byron Skinner May 9, 2009 at 12:26 pm

Good Morning Folks,
I’ve been waiting for someone to expose the flaw in this arming of the CV-22, but it appears there is a lack of experience here in Airmobile operations.
It appears that there are more English Teachers on this site then warriors, thats cool. There are a lot more English Teachers then true warriors so I guess “We few, we happy few, we band of brothers…And the gentlemen in England, now abed…they were not here….hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks.” that those who are warriors would soon get more bored then usual. So to you English Teachers out their, keep up the spell check.
The most vulnerable time for the aircraft in this type of operation if the few seconds on the ground that they re dismounting, or taking on personal or cargo. During this period the CV-22 is sitting on it’s weapon system, it is useless, this is why it’s never been done before.
In the case citied above it’s not precision that counts but the ability to lay down fire in a beaten zone and keep the enemies head down, the two side/door M2HB’s of the CH-46 did a rather good job of that.
To advance this a bit there is renewed interest by Russian arms designer in the 12.7 and 14.5 mm MG’s. In the 12.7 caliber their is now a tripod mounted GP50 and a bipod GT19 LWMG. seeing the design of the GT19 I would want to be the gunner of this weapon, but I’m sure their are many that would. Then there is renewed interest in the 14.5mm caliber and designing it into a single weapon “light weight” mount, that as mentioned in another post, be fitted on the back of light pick up truck.
These weapons are being licenced to to the new arms merchants, India, Romania, Albania, Ukraine, Belorussia, Iran etc. It can be assumed that these killing machines will be showing up in the next contested area of the world Africa.
The CV-22 in short is nothing more then flying truck that should stay away any place where there is even a possibility of enemy fire. The proposed gun system is nothing more then a revenge weapon for getting the he** out of there.
ALLONS,
Byron Skinner

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John May 9, 2009 at 12:45 pm
flying fart proudly joyned May 9, 2009 at 5:06 pm

hey.. the great holy country only for jews won a battles by droping down soda-watter bottles on british-palestinian forces..

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Robert Stoner May 9, 2009 at 8:04 pm

This article reads like a PR release by BAe Systems. The M134 Mini-gun is NOT a cannon. It fires the 7.62×51 NATO cartridge that has no explosive properties. The M240 ramp gun is likewise a popgun.
Your typical CH-46 Sea Knight carries more firepower than the MV-22 Osprey — usually two GAU-16/A (.50 Browning M2 aircraft machine guns on a soft mount) and it can mount a GAU-21/A (.50 Browning M3 aircraft machine gun) on the ramp.
The real deal is that the Osprey is under armed and no one seems to have an understanding that this is the case. The MINIMUM gun the Osprey should be carrying is the .50 Browning and there are lots of them available. The RGS in its current configuration is an expensive toy with a joystick and a Mini-gun. The RGS should be carrying a .50 (12.7×99 NATO) weapon and not some 7.62 NATO wimp gun.
Better idea: scrap the RGS and install the three .50 Browning guns of the CH-46 birds. You can buy a lot of mounts, guns, and ammo for the price of the RGS and they will be far more effective.

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Jeff M May 9, 2009 at 9:31 pm

The 7.62×51 minigun is just fine for suppressive fire, especially with a gyro stabilized, auto-tracking mount. I’m all for another flying tank, but this weapon certainly will kill.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N7ELhy4_0hM

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Rick May 9, 2009 at 11:58 pm

When you are shooting from a fast unstabilized platform volume of fire counts. 7.62mm miniguns have a rate of fire somewhere between 3000 and 6000 rounds per minute. A .50 calibur gun fires 450 to 550 rounds per minute. That single gun that most posters here seem to feel is so inadequate for the job will lay down almost four times as many rounds as three .50′s. Since the three .50′s are all pointed in different directions you are really talking about six times as many rounds on a target. That’s before the ramp gun kicks in.

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Rob1855 May 10, 2009 at 9:56 am

I liked Trautman better when he was a colonel.

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Charles May 10, 2009 at 3:58 pm

The thing is, how often will Osprey fly in with cover? For Afghanistan Osprey is being trumpeted as a new vehicle capable of operating in places where helicopters cannot. I take it this would apply to the helicopters flying in support (Cobra, etc).

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Charles May 10, 2009 at 3:11 pm

So we have a dorsal mount of some kind…I thought they were going to come out with a “chin turret”?
Also, maybe something mounted co-axial so that it fires based on how the plane is pointed? Perhaps three fifties in the nose like the P-38?
In the end the lack of side weapons imparts dangerous blind spots to the Osprey. What prevents them from simply putting firing ports and hoping to god gunners don’t shoot up the Osprey in the process?

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Robert Stoner May 10, 2009 at 5:45 pm

There seems to be some clarification needed regarding the .50 Browning machine gun. The AN-M2 Browning was built in three versions: (1) water-cooled (obsolete); (2) Heavy Barrel (current issue); (3) aircraft (fixed and flexible, current issue). The AN-M3 Browning is a modification of the AN-M2 aircraft gun to increase the rate of fire.
Cyclic rates: The AN-M2HB has a rate of 450-550 rpm. The AN-M2 Aircraft has a rate of 850-950 rpm. The AN-M3 Aircraft has a rate of 1,050-1,150 rpm.
Current designations of the AN-M2 Aircraft is GAU-16/A; the AN-M3 Aircraft is the GAU-21/A. FN Herstal-USA is in the process of re-manufacturing the AN-M3 to the M3M (or GAU-21/A). The GAU-21/A is modified to fire from an open bolt (to assist cooling) and is equipped with a mechanical safety. The GAU-16/A has a mechanical safety and fires from a closed bolt.
There is an aircraft mounting for the AN-M2HB called the XM218. This gun is mounted on a recoil absorbing mount that helps keep recoil forces from being transmitted to the aiframe. Both GAU-16/A and GAU-21/A use recoil absorbing mounts.
Fixed forward firing guns could be easily fitted to the MV-22 Osprey. Major Paul “Pappy” Gunn (5th USAAF) designed the .50 gun packs that were installed on B-25 Mitchell and B-26 Marauder medium bombers during WW2. The gun packs were aerodynamic blisters that housed two .50 AN-M2 fixed aircraft guns on both sides of the fuselage. The guns were aligned to converge at a certain point in front of the aircraft. The gun packs were fired by the pilot who aimed them with a simple sight mounted on the airplane’s instrument panel.
My version of a well-armed Osprey would have two forward firing .50 AN-M2 fixed guns; two GAU-16/A guns fring out the sides; one GAU-21/A on the rear ramp. Now, that would be a very capable bird to go in harm’s way.

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BritTankie May 10, 2009 at 6:18 pm

@John, you sound a bit dumb there mate – you ever actually taken incoming? Even a few are unnerving, and if you’re some Taliban lying in wait for some Ospreys, and they start churning out rounds as they come in, I promise you you’ll keep you’re head down if the gunners know their business, and knowing US Aircrew they probably will. It’s not a weapon to kill, its a weapon to surpress, and as already well pointed out a multi barrel 7.62 is better than a .50.
.50 is a bad idea because it would carry a lot less ammunition than a 7.62 for the same weight, so why do it – it’s not designed to destroy hard targets, so why bother? 7.62 will make a mess out of a human target, it doesn’t need to be bigger.
And Byron has somethingpart right – why the hell would you want to weigh it down with more and more guns – its a transport, not a damn gunship, so stop adding pointless weight, if it goes in it’ll have cover from far more useful airframes, like Cobra’s and that new C130 varient. All adding guns to the Ospreys will do is lower their carrying capacity, be it volume and weight.
More guns is not always the answer, jeez

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BritTankie May 10, 2009 at 6:19 pm

@John, you sound a bit dumb there mate – you ever actually taken incoming? Even a few are unnerving, and if you’re some Taliban lying in wait for some Ospreys, and they start churning out rounds as they come in, I promise you you’ll keep you’re head down if the gunners know their business, and knowing US Aircrew they probably will. It’s not a weapon to kill, its a weapon to surpress, and as already well pointed out a multi barrel 7.62 is better than a .50.
.50 is a bad idea because it would carry a lot less ammunition than a 7.62 for the same weight, so why do it – it’s not designed to destroy hard targets, so why bother? 7.62 will make a mess out of a human target, it doesn’t need to be bigger.
And Byron has somethingpart right – why the hell would you want to weigh it down with more and more guns – its a transport, not a damn gunship, so stop adding pointless weight, if it goes in it’ll have cover from far more useful airframes, like Cobra’s and that new C130 varient. All adding guns to the Ospreys will do is lower their carrying capacity, be it volume and weight.
More guns is not always the answer, jeez

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BritTankie May 10, 2009 at 6:21 pm

NB – I apologise for some of the awful typo’s in that, and the missing words. I have a new notebook and I can;t get used to the tiny keyboard :D

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Charles May 10, 2009 at 8:00 pm

The thing is, how often will Osprey fly in with cover? For Afghanistan Osprey is being trumpeted as a new vehicle capable of operating in places where helicopters cannot. I take it this would apply to the helicopters flying in support (Cobra, etc).

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Camp May 10, 2009 at 10:13 pm

For what it’s worth….
Originally, the AH-1 Cobra mounted a 7.62mm gatling /40mm grenade launcher combo in the nose. Yet today it slings a 20mm GAU.
I’d rather have seen something that can dish out fragmentary damage (like the 30mm, M230) in the belly, and save the 7.62mm gatling for the tail ramp.
I wonder if the Marines could use a “Guns A Go-Go” bird? :)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WttpWwcSjy4
http://gunsagogo.org/0002/0002/midNam/ach78.jpg
http://gunsagogo.org/0002/0002/earlyNam/0090.jpg
http://gunsagogo.org/0002/0002/lateNam/0193x.jpg
http://gunsagogo.org/0002/0002/lateNam/0195x.jpg

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Robert Stoner May 10, 2009 at 11:54 pm

The MV-22 Ospreys have a very big problem that no one has touched upon. Namely, the Osprey is faster than its dedicated escort, the AH-1W or AH-1Z Sea Cobras.
Since the Osprey is faster, any escort helo gunships will have to leave before the MV-22 to assure they will arrive over the LZ at the same time the Ospreys do. This is the only way the current Ospreys can rely on fire suppot when they do insertions or extractions of their operators.
As currently fielded, the Osprey is woefully deficient in defensive firepower with only a ramp mounted M240 7.62mm machine gun. A fixed forward .50×2, side flexible .50×2, and one ramp flexible .50 would allow the Osprey to defend itself on a hot LZ and defend itself on the insertion or extraction.
I have used both the Mini-gun and the M2/M3 guns in real combat and I can tell you that nothing commands respect like a .50 caliber hammering at you. The Mini-gun is a fine bullet hose, but it lacks range and power; the .50 has a slower cyclic rate, carries less ammo, but it has far greater range and punch. As far as I’m concerned, I’d rather have the range and punch over a short-legged bullet hose.
If you really want to scare the enemy, then equip the Osprey with a loudspeaker and a recording of a Mini-gun firing. The “chainsaw on steroids” sound of the Mini-gun IS terrifying, but the throaty roar of the .50, combined with the punch of its cartridge really keeps your head down.
The .50 (12.7×99 NATO) is one caliber that is truly frighting whether you’re dishing it out to a target (or whether the target is shooing back with a 12.7×108 Russian equivalent).
Another way to scare the hell out of the bad guys on the gound is to load more tracer rounds in the belt than the current 1-in-5 mix. A stream of heavy caliber tracer fire is quite disconcerting to the recipient.

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Robert Stoner May 10, 2009 at 11:57 pm

The MV-22 Ospreys have a very big problem that no one has touched upon. Namely, the Osprey is faster than its dedicated escort, the AH-1W or AH-1Z Sea Cobras.
Since the Osprey is faster, any escort helo gunships will have to leave before the MV-22 to assure they will arrive over the LZ at the same time the Ospreys do. This is the only way the current Ospreys can rely on fire suppot when they do insertions or extractions of their operators.
As currently fielded, the Osprey is woefully deficient in defensive firepower with only a ramp mounted M240 7.62mm machine gun. A fixed forward .50×2, side flexible .50×2, and one ramp flexible .50 would allow the Osprey to defend itself on a hot LZ and defend itself on the insertion or extraction.
I have used both the Mini-gun and the M2/M3 guns in real combat and I can tell you that nothing commands respect like a .50 caliber hammering at you. The Mini-gun is a fine bullet hose, but it lacks range and power; the .50 has a slower cyclic rate, carries less ammo, but it has far greater range and punch. As far as I’m concerned, I’d rather have the range and punch over a short-legged bullet hose.
If you really want to scare the enemy, then equip the Osprey with a loudspeaker and a recording of a Mini-gun firing. The “chainsaw on steroids” sound of the Mini-gun IS terrifying, but the throaty roar of the .50, combined with the punch of its cartridge really keeps your head down.
The .50 (12.7×99 NATO) is one caliber that is truly frighting whether you’re dishing it out to a target (or whether the target is shooing back with a 12.7×108 Russian equivalent).
Another way to scare the hell out of the bad guys on the gound is to load more tracer rounds in the belt than the current 1-in-5 mix. A stream of heavy caliber tracer fire is quite disconcerting to the recipient.

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Rick May 11, 2009 at 6:37 am

The cobras were fitted with 20mm cannon so they would be more effective attacking tanks.
As far as the minigun not being being scary enough to keep heads down – this is a link to video of the gun being fired from a helicopter. What do you guys think?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RReAI3M1_K0&feature=related

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Charles May 11, 2009 at 8:59 am

Blackhawks mount the M134 minigun. Did a pair of miniguns per Blackhawk do a decent job in Operation Gothic Serpent? (“Mogadishu”)
Trying to decide if a Mk19 or other automatic grenade launcher system would be of use on the Osprey.
I was also under the impression that V-22 could operate at higher altitudes with less performance losses than choppers. Because of this, Osprey must be mildly armed for self-defense, or a gunship companion be developed, or a gunship variant of Osprey must be fielded. For case one, firepower cannot compromise performance. For cases two and three, gunship cannot be slower or have significantly worse performance than Osprey transport (or the transports will have to slow down for it, etc).
The M2′s are heavy and will have reduced ammunition loads, but the M134 is quite heavy too, and requires electrical power to drive the minigun, etc.
Also; I suspect the Ospreys would be instructed to hold station keeping away from any battle after dropping off troops. The longer range of a M2 would help there, they would have greater standoff range to avoid RPGs, stingers etc.
Another off-topic Q: After a Osprey drops off troops and goes on station, does it go into helicopter mode, or does it loiter in airplane mode? It would probably affect the weapons loadout of the Osprey or gunship variants.

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Ed May 11, 2009 at 9:50 am

I don’t get why they had to create a new piece of technology just for the MV-22. Couldn’t they just as simply have taken the CROWS and mount that to an osprey? Or did they have to make the package lighter and that is the reason for a new setup?

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Camp May 11, 2009 at 11:23 am

Rick,
Cobras were fitted with TOWs & Hellfires to be effective against tanks. The 20mm was employed (with AH-1S Upgunned Cobra) to dispatch light armored vehicles & troops in cover. Where as, the 7.62 minigun is primarily effective against troops in the open, has a shorter range, and comparatively less effect.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rQ0x8YMJrvE
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_fCkkzSayYQ
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIM1xQm7ih0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPRA5dCraOc

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Patriot93 May 11, 2009 at 2:04 pm

Just mount the 20mm from the Super Cobra on the nose and a .50 in the back and sides maybe on the Osprey

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BritTankie May 11, 2009 at 4:40 pm

Excellent point about tracer by Robert
In my GROUND based experience, more rounds going over you’re head, snapping off rocks and slashing through the bush are a lot worse than less rounds. Less fragmenting rounds I should imagine would be worse but i’ve been fortunate enough to avoid THAT experience just yet. So maybe a 20mm would be nicer, but that means WEIGHT and WEIGHT means less speed, and even less rounds.
And you can’t put guns on the side, because frankly I wouldn’t trust side gunners not to put rounds into the engine as it swings down for hover.
The screen makes it EASIER to come on target, because it adjusts the aim off point for the gunner, all s/he has to do it point and click, it aims it to hit where s/he’s aiming on the ground.
Finally, i was chatting the other day to a Fleet Air Arm pilot who just got back from ‘Stan and apprently the Osprey has AWFUL Hot ‘n High performance, regardless of what the Marines and Air Force say – according to one of the pilots flying it

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Rick May 12, 2009 at 2:30 pm

Forgive my imprecise writing. The 20mm cannon on the cobra was designed to penetrate light armor. Just for fun and giggles let me point out that a 20mm sabot round fired into the engine deck from above will kill most tanks. A fact that did not escape the people who ordered the modifications done. The entire aircraft was optimized to kill tanks, not people.
In our current wars there are no tanks to kill. More ‘punch’ is irrelavent when you are talking about unarmored men – You cannot kill someone deader than dead. The miniguns do a better job on people and they are the appropriate weapon for what we are doing now. Later that may change.
BTW: On the more tracer thing – miniguns shooting the standard 1-in-5 tracer mix look like they are shooting a stream of fire. That’s how the mingun armed AC-47′s came to be nicknamed ‘Puff’ as in Puff the Magic Dragon.

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Patriot93 May 13, 2009 at 9:33 pm

The 20mm may be more suited for light skinned vehicles and tanks but it can also be very effective against infantry in hillsides, dug in, or in small fortifications were the 7.63×51 could not reliably penetrate. But I guess if thats the path theyw ant to go on, let’s see how it works out. If as they say it won;t kill many, then that just leaves more to kill for our guys dismounting.

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Cheney October 22, 2009 at 1:14 am

I think this gun will work great. The 50 may have greater range but the miniguns barrel is more rigid so I think the accuracy would be better, and really they both need to score direct hits.
The interesting thing here is the targeting pod could be equipped with a laser and some small diameter bombs or hellfires added. That would take the firepower much further than adding more/bigger guns. Maybe a new weapon that fires javelin missiles from the underbelly.

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