M240L 7.62mm Medium Machine Gun recognized as Greatest Inventions 2010 United States Army 1812113
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Defense News - United States
Sunday, December 18, 2011, 09:54 AM
|M240L 7.62mm Medium Machine Gun recognized as Greatest Inventions 2010 for United States Army.|
The United States Army recognized the M240L 7.62mm Medium Machine Gun among the 2010 Army Greatest Inventions (AGI) during an awards ceremony at the Association of the United States Army Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., Oct. 11.
The M240L medium machine gun with short barrel and collapsible buttstock.
The Army's first titanium machine gun was in good company, sharing the limelight with no less than five other Picatinny AGI winners out of a field of 10 honorees.
"The recognition validated the value the gun delivers to Soldiers," said Tom Walsh, M240 Product Director, Project Manager Soldier Weapons.
"The M240L is five pounds lighter than the original M240B, but delivers the same performance and reliability. The weight reduction means a great deal to Soldiers who are carrying the guns up and down the mountains of Afghanistan every day."
"First Unit Equipped" took place at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii in November 2010.
The Army took delivery of more than 3,600 M240Ls, 1,700 of which were fielded in support of current or upcoming Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) deployments.
Getting the program to where it is today was an enormous challenge, but one that the Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) and Project Manager (PM) Soldier Weapons personnel were more than prepared for.
M240L tested by United States army soldiers
The M240 7.62mm medium machine gun series has long been a dependable workhorse. The Army first adopted the weapon in 1977 as an armor vehicle mounted secondary weapon system.
Army and Marine infantry units began using the M240G and M240B in the mid-90s.
The popularity of the gun soared as it became known for reliability, durability and low maintenance. Despite its success, Soldiers still noted the added weight and length of the M240 compared to its predecessor, the M60.
PM Soldier Weapons and ARDEC engineers started discussions with the manufacturer to consider ways to reduce the weapon's weight while preserving all of the performance standards of the original weapon by 2000.
On this point, there could be no compromise. In hindsight, the effort took longer than anticipated.