Field trials of Kalashnikov RPK-16 light machine gun by Russian army

The Kalashnikov 5.45mm RPK-16 light machine gun is currently undergoing operational evaluation trials in the Russian Armed Forces, the Kalashnikov Media platform reported. The RPK-16 is a 5.45mm caliber light machine gun (LMG) designed and manufactured by the Russian small arms manufacturer Kalashnikov Group, a subsidiary of the Russian ROSTEC state corporation.

Field trials of Kalashnikov RPK 16 light machine gun by Russian army 925 001
Kalashnikov RPK-16 5.45mm caliber light machine gun at Army-2017, defense exhibition near Moscow, Russia. (Picture source army Recognition)

"The RPK-16 light machinegun is currently undergoing operational evaluation trials. It is designed to hit targets at a range of up to 500 meters," expert of the Kalashnikov Corporation Sergei Radkevich said.

The RPK-16 was unveiled during Army-2016, the International Military Technical Forum which was held near Moscow in September 2016. It was especially developed to replace the old Soviet-made RPK 7.62x39mm caliber light machine gun developed by Mikhail Kalashnikov in the late 1950s.

The RPK-16 has a maximum firing range of 800m and a rate of fire of 700 rounds per minute. In january 2017, the Russian Defense Ministry has ordered a pilot batch of up-to-date RPK-16 light machineguns for delivery in 2017, according to the press office of the Kalashnikov Corporation.

The RPK-16 light machine uses the standard design and layout of Kalashnikov assault rifle family. it uses traditional gas operated action with rotary bolt locking. The RPK-16 has barrel change capability, so it can be uses as a standard light machine gun with a long barrel or as an assault machine gun with a short barrel.

The RPK-16 is chambered for 5.45x39mm M74 ammunition. It can fire a full range of ammunition as the 7N6, 7N10, 7T3, and 7T3M munitions. The RPK-16 can use two types of magazine with 30 or 96 rounds drum box magazine.


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