A firearm is a gun a barreled ranged weapon designed to be readily carried and used by a single individual. It inflicts damage on targets by launching one or more projectiles driven by rapidly expanding high-pressure gas produced by exothermic combustion deflagration of chemical propellant.
List of individual weapons of the U.S. Armed Forces
The first primitive firearms originated in 10th-century China when bamboo tubes containing gunpowder and pellet projectiles were mounted on spears into the one-person-portable fire lance which was later used as a shock weapon to good effect in the Siege of De'an in In the 13th century the Chinese invented the metal-barrelled hand cannonwidely considered [ by whom?
Older firearms typically used black powder as a propellant, but modern firearms use smokeless powder or other propellants.
Most modern firearms with the notable exception of smoothbore shotguns have rifled barrels to impart spin to the projectile for improved flight stability.
Modern firearms can be described by their caliber i. Further classification may make reference to the type of barrel used rifled and to the barrel length 24 inchto the firing mechanism e. Gatling gun. Shooters aim firearms at their targets with hand-eye coordinationusing either iron sights or optical sights.
The term " small arms " generally refers to any kinetic-projectile firearm small and light enough to be carried and operated by a single infantryman. Such firearms include handguns such as revolverspistols and derringersand long guns such as rifles of which there are many subtypes such as anti-material riflessniper riflesdesignated marksman riflesbattle riflesassault rifles and carbinesshotgunssubmachine gunspersonal defense weaponssquad automatic weapons and light machine guns.
As of [update] the Small Arms Survey reported that there were over one billion small arms distributed globally, of which million about 85 percent were in civilian hands. In south africa act 60 of'handgun' means a pistol or revolver which can be held in and discharged with one hand. There are two common types of handguns: revolvers and semi-automatic pistols. Revolvers have a number of firing chambers or "charge holes" in a revolving cylinder; each chamber in the cylinder is loaded with a single cartridge or charge.
Semi-automatic pistols have a single fixed firing-chamber machined into the rear of the barrel, and a magazine so they can be used to fire more than one round. Each press of the trigger fires a cartridge, using the energy of the cartridge to activate a mechanism so that the next cartridge may be fired immediately.
This is opposed to " double-action " revolvers, which accomplish the same end using a mechanical action linked to the trigger pull. With the invention of the revolver inhandguns capable of holding multiple rounds became popular.
Certain designs of auto-loading pistol appeared beginning in the s and had largely supplanted revolvers in military applications by the end of World War I. By the end of the 20th century, most handguns carried regularly by military, police and civilians were semi-automatic, although revolvers were still widely used.
Generally speaking, military and police forces use semi-automatic pistols due to their high magazine capacities and ability to rapidly reload by simply removing the empty magazine and inserting a loaded one.Nothing gives a weapon system more credibility than a stamp of approval by the U. Navy SEALs. These Tier 1 operators use an extensive array of weapon systems that, in some cases, were developed specifically for their mission requirements.
The Mk 23 was chosen for supreme accuracy, reliable functioning, corrosion resistant properties and terminal ballistics behind the. The extended barrel features threading designed to accept a KAC suppressor. More compact than the U. Capable of both semi-auto and full-auto modes, the M4 has a rate of fire between and rounds per minute and uses a quick-attach suppressor.
Additional enhancements are currently being considered. The Mk 11 was developed to meet a solicitation placed by the U. Featuring controls like the standard issue Colt M4A1, the Mk 11 is a unique semi-auto-only sniper rifle that can be suppressed and is capable of delivering effective precision beyond 1, yards. Length: This short recoil, rotating bolt semi-automatic rifle delivers high energy and was famously used in Somalia by the SEALs in against many enemy vehicles.
The round-per-minute MP5 is extremely accurate and provides a superb option for CQB operations earning praise from the SEALs for its controllability, smooth operation and accurate shot placement.
It is known for its high reliability and operates from the open bolt. The M features an adjustable gas system that fires between and rounds per minute and the MB and MG models feature a bipod. Even though it is heavier than the M60, the M is expected to completely replace the M60 due to its easy maintenance and impressive reliability.
Sign up for our newsletter Sign Up. Up Next. Nothing gives a weapon system more credibility than a stamp of approval by the… by Tactical-Life. Athlon Outdoors Network. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email.This article is still under construction. It may contain factual errors. See Talk:List of weapons used by U. Armed Forces for current discussions. Content is subject to change. This page is designed to help users who are not familiar with firearms that are both in and out of service with the U.
Jump to: navigationsearch. Namespaces Page Discussion. Views Read View source View history. Social Media Facebook Forum. Work In Progress This article is still under construction. Contents 1 Handguns 1. Colt Model Ruger Service Six. M15 General Officer's Pistol. Benelli M4 Super M26 Modular Accessory Shotgun System. Stevens Model Winchester Model MA1 Thompson. M3 "Grease Gun". M3A1 "Grease Gun". M Firing Port Weapon. Close Quarters Battle Receiver.
Norinco Type Berdan Sharps Rifle. General Dynamics M Vulcan. GE M Minigun. Colt Hotchkiss M Browning Automatic Rifle. RPD light machine gun 31 inch conversion. Carl Gustav M3.
Mk 19 grenade launcher. Mk 47 Mod 0 Grenade Launcher. M1 "Bazooka". M1A1 "Bazooka". M9 "Bazooka".From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Wikimedia list article. Categories : Lists of firearms Pistols. Hidden categories: Articles with short description. Namespaces Article Talk.
Waffenfabrik August Mentz. Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta. Beretta 87 Target. Bergmann—Bayard pistol. Calico Light Weapons Systems. Caracal International L.Illicit flows of small arms and light weapons undermine security and the rule of law. They are often a factor behind the forced displacement of civilians and massive human rights violations.
Programme of Action on illicit small arms and light weapons, and its International Tracing Instrument. Firearms Protocol. Arms Trade Treaty.
Ammunition technical guidelines. Gun-free zones. Firearms Programme.Soviet Small Arms
Sustainable Development Goals. Welcome to the United Nations. Weapons of Mass Destruction. Conventional Arms. Regional Disarmament. Transparency and Confidence-building. Other Disarmament Issues. Disarmament Bodies and Institutions. Databases and Research Tools.
Resources and Publications.
Statements and Press Releases. General Assembly General Assembly resolutions The illicit trade in small arms and light weapons in all its aspects Earlier versions. GGE on illicit brokering in small arms Security Council Security Council resolutions Options for reflecting weapons and ammunition management in the SC decisions.
Human rights and the impact on arms transfers Human rights and the regulation of civilian acquisition, possession and use of firearms.Since the introduction of the flintlock musket in the 17th century, military small arms have gone through a series of significant changes. By employing different projectiles and successively improved chemical propellants, the dual goal of most arms designers has been the creation of man-portable weapons of greater firepower and reduced weight.
But the attainment of this goal has continually been hampered by an inescapable physical relationship between the recoil forces generated by gunpowder weapons and the mass and velocity of their projectiles. In order to reduce the weight of a weaponits recoil energy has to be reduced, but reducing recoil also affects the killing power of the bullet. Given the constraints of this relationship, military small arms may well have reached a level where, within reasonable economic limits, significantly higher performance cannot be obtained merely by improving existing gunpowder-based technology.
Practical shoulder-fired small arms started with the perfection of the flintlock ignition system in the midth century see military technology. Earlier gunpowder small arms, based on the matchlock or wheel lock mechanisms, were generally too heavy, too unreliable, or too expensive to allow for general issue to infantry forces.
Nevertheless, they were capable of sending bullets through the best armour that could be worn by a mobile soldier. Almost overnight, firepower from muskets became the dominant force in war, and fully armoured soldiers almost disappeared from European battlefields toward the end of the 16th century.
With armour-piercing power no longer necessary, muskets could be made smaller, and shoulder weapons without rests became the norm. The introduction of new ignition systems did not immediately render older forms obsolete, however; all systems, in many variations, existed side by side.
Wheel locks and matchlocks, for example, persisted into the 18th century, long after flintlocks had established their primacy in Europe and America. Flintlock small arms emerged at the start of industrialization, with weapons production becoming one of the first industrial sectors to exploit the transition from craft production to the large-scale production of the Industrial Revolution.
On the military side, these weapons entered service at a time when the scale of ground forces employed in battle was increasing. The ability to manufacture large numbers of muskets enabled military leaders to equip these mass armies.
List of firearms
By the s European military authorities had begun moving toward greater uniformity in order to eliminate mixed inventories of nonstandard weapons. England took the first steps toward creating a national system of small-arms manufacture. For years, completed muskets had been purchased from a variety of English, Irish, and Dutch gunmakers, who subcontracted for components and arranged for final assembly.
Beginning in the early s, ordnance officials, from their headquarters at the Tower of Londondivided the manufacture of firearms into locks, stocks, barrels, ramrods, and furniture—all of which they sought to purchase directly from subcontractors.
Known as the second model Brown Bess, the Short Land became one of the basic weapons used in the American Revolution — During the wars with Napoleon from tomore than 1. In France, standard-pattern muskets did not exist prior towhen the government specified a weapon with a inch barrel and a calibre of. This calibre remained standard until the 19th century. This process was intended to produce less expensive muskets that were easier to make and repair, but worker resistance delayed large-scale manufacture of small arms using interchangeable parts until the early s.
Had the program succeeded earlier, France would have been better equipped to fight the Napoleonic Wars. The U. These armouries and their private competitors later became important centres of technological innovation.
With the adoption of the. The Model was based on the Model flintlock, but it featured a switch to percussion ignition. This newer system was based on the explosive property of potassium chlorate and fulminate of mercury, both of which detonate when struck a small, sharp blow by a striker.
Several Germans experimented with detonating fulminates in the late 17th century, and the French did likewise in the 18th century, but it was Alexander John Forsytha Scottish clergyman, who successfully wedded priming powders to the ignition of firearms inreceiving a patent in April Turning the bottle upside down released some detonator powder into a cavity at the top of the plug, and turning the bottle back left the striker mechanism, consisting of a hammer rather than the cock and jaws of the flintlock, free to operate.
When the trigger was pulled, the hammer fell, detonating the compound. Subsequent inventors simplified the percussion lock mechanism by using loose or pellet detonating powder. Bypercussion caps attributed to the Philadelphian Joshua Shaw in were becoming the accepted system for igniting firearm powder charges. A percussion cap was a truncated cone of metal preferably copper that contained a small amount of fulminate of mercury inside its crown, protected by foil and shellac.
Small Arms by Country
In the final form of this mechanism, a hollow-nosed percussion hammer came down over the percussion cap, thus eliminating the danger of flying copper when the powder detonated. Percussion cap ignition was easily adapted to existing flintlock muskets and pistols.The Enyclopedia aims to provide accurate, up-to-date information on weapons, the effects of their use, and their regulation under public international law, in a format that is accessible to non-specialists.
Initially the term small arms did not refer solely to firearms. They include, inter alia, revolvers and self-loading pistols, rifles and carbines, sub-machine guns, assault rifles and light machine guns. Both the Panel of Experts report and the ITI also include related ammunition in their scope, as well as small arms parts and components. Craft firearms also referred to as artisanal, hand-made, or home-made weapons were included in the scope of the Panel of Experts report, Report of the Panel of Governmental Experts on Small Arms, UN doc.
However, antique weapons are subjected to relaxed rules. What constitutes an antique firearm is defined in national law, but cannot include weapons manufactured after The list of weapons they present does not explicitly include firearms such as single-shot or derringer pistols and shotguns. There remain some variations in the everyday use of the expression.
Marchant Smith and P. There are roughly million firearms in the world. Most an estimated million are privately owned. This includes firearms held by gangs 2 million millionprivate security companies 1. Civilian ownership rates vary from 1 firearm or less for every people to a high of 90 firearms for every people in the United States. Civilian small arms outnumber their military counterparts worldwide by more than three to one. Almost one quarter of the global military total are held by just two states: China and Russia.
National military weapons ratios range from 1. While most visible in public, small arms holdings of law enforcement agencies are actually rather modest, with an estimated 25 million firearms globally. Millions more firearms are produced every year. For military weapons alone, global production averages 0. Production is not constant but cyclical, responding to the demands of wealthy states. The manufacturing sector ranges from small repairs firms with a localized market including craft or artisanal production to large and often state-owned companies offering an extensive range of weapons and catering almost exclusively for the military, alongside smaller specialised manufacturers with a niche market, larger firms with household names catering for civilians with mass production lines, high-tech firms producing primarily for the non-small-arms field, or large contract engineering firms producing components and accessories.
Both the Firearms Protocol and the International Tracing Instrument provide that small arms must be marked, and set out norms to facilitate tracing. Destruction is the only means of disposal that can prevent future misuse, and is the preferred method of disposal as set out in the United Nations Programme of Action on Small Armsbut it is not the most frequent method.
Destruction of surplus military small arms averages aboutunits annually: less than new military production. Some states nevertheless stand out in their destruction efforts. Germany undertook the largest contemporary small arms destruction programme recorded to date when it eliminated 2.