M777, 155mm Towed Howitzer

M777 In Afghanistan 2007

Canadian M777 In Afghanistan 2007

M777 In the Towed Position

M777 In the Towed Position

M777 - 5 RALC - Petawawa Apr 06

M777 - DCDT

These pics represent the latest configuration of CDN M777; however, the DCDT was not hooked up

The 155mm, Medium, M777 Lightweight Towed Howitzer was first procured by Canada in 2005 in limited numbers to support deployed Canadian troops on operations. Since the formation of the Lightweight Towed Howitzer Project in 2007, in 2008 the M777 howitzer was selected to be Canada's new medium cannon artillery piece and will be supplying indirect fire support to the Canadian Army for the next 20 years.

The M777 has proven to be a very mobile and highly accurate artillery piece. The integration of the Gun Management System to the M777 in 2006 has changed the way the Royal Canadian Artillery conducts gunnery operations. The Canadian Gun Management System (GMS) is unique in the world but is based on the LINAPS system by SELEX Sensors and Airborne Systems and is manufactured in Edinburgh, UK.

The GMS consists of a Power Management System, Inertial Navigation Unit, Gunners Display Unit, Muzzle Velocity Indicator (DOPPLER RADAR head from Weible in Germany), Detachment Commanders Display Terminal, and Odometer. All Optical Fire Control (OFC) components remain on the howitzer in case the GMS becomes unserviceable. The M777 with GMS provides Canada with a truly, 21st century, mobile, rapidly-deployable, indirect fire capability. The GMS and Optical Fire Control components are maintained by the Eletro-Optical Technician while the howitzer is maintained by the Weapons Technician.

The lightweight characteristics of the M777 are mostly due to the dominating use of Titanium within the structure of the howitzer carriage. The main assemblies of the carriage consists of a "Cradle" which is part of the elevating mass, a "Saddle" which holds the elevating mass and can be traversed a total of 800 mils; and, the "Body" which is the foundation of the carriage and consists of a central base, left and right spade assemblies as well as left and right forward stabilizers.

There is no need for a variable recoil system on the M777 which helps reduce weight; however, the equilibration system is critical due to the fact that the ordnance is quite a bit forward of the trunnions. The Breech Opening Loading Tray System (B.O.L.T.S.) is a unique lightweight hydraulic system which operates the breech and loading tray. Gunners will charge the B.O.L.T.S. with a hand pump and the system will stay charged through the recoil actions of firing and a hydraulic scavenge system.

The OEM for the howitzer is BAE Systems in the UK; however, the ordnance consisting of the Breech Mechanism, Cannon and Muzzle Brake is designed and manufactured by the US DoD.

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