M136 AT4 Anti-Tank Missile

The M136 AT-4 LAW is a shoulder-launched anti-armor weapon designed to defeat modern threat main battle tanks. The AT4 is manufactured by FFV Ordnance, Sweden and Alliant Techsystems.

M136 AT4 held by trooper from A Company, 601st Aviation Support Battalion, 1st Infantry Division
M136 AT4 held by trooper from A Company, 601st Aviation Support Battalion, 1st Infantry Division.

Today in WW II: 22 Sep 1943 Operation TOENAILS completed, with the occupation by US troops of all important islands in the New Georgia group, Central Solomons.  

M136 AT4 Light Antitank Weapon (LAW)

The M136 AT4 is a lightweight, self-contained, anti-armor weapon consisting of a free-flight, fin-stabilized, rocket-type cartridge packed in an expendable, one-piece, watertight fiberglass-wrapped tube. Though the M136 AT4 can be employed in limited visibility, the firer must be able to see and identify the target and estimate the range to it. Unlike the M72-series LAW, the M136 AT4 launcher need not be extended before firing. The maximum effective range is 984.3 feet (300 meters).

The M136 AT4 is used primarily by infantry forces for engagement and defeat of armor threats. The rifle's design permits accurate delivery of a 84mm High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) warhead providing excellent penetration capability (more than 15 inches -400 mm - of rolled homogenous armor) and lethal after-armor effects. It replaced the M72-series LAW as the Army's primary light antitank weapon.

The M136 AT4 is man-portable and is fired from the right shoulder only. It is 40 inches (101.6 centimeters) in length and weighs 14.75 pounds (6.7 kilograms). The bore diameter is 3.3 inches (84 mm).

M136 AT4 launchers are marked with color-coded bands. A black with yellow band indicates an HE anti-armor round (early models had a solid black band). A gold or yellow band indicates a field handling trainer (as in the photos on this page); no band indicates an M287 9-mm tracer bullet trainer.

AT4 training, 25th Infantry Division, 2nd Brigade, 31 January 2004
AT4 training, 25th Infantry Division, 2nd Brigade, 31 January 2004.

M136 AT4 CS (Confined Space) Weapon

The M136 AT4 CS is an advanced version of the AT4 munition that can be fired from a confined space, significantly increasing the soldier’s ability to fight in an urban environment. The AT4 CS consists of a shock resistant, fiberglass-reinforced launching tube fitted with a firing mechanism, pop-up sights, a carrying sling, protective covers and bumpers. The recoilless design is superior to that of rocket-type weapons for confined space applications.

The system weighs 7.5 kg and has an effective range of 984.3 feet (300 meters). There are two versions: High Penetration (HP) and Reduced Sensitivity (RS).

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