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Effects of the M136 AT4 and M72-series LAW on field fortifications or bunkers

Alternatives to give temporary advantages against field fortifications and buildings

The M72-series LAW and the M136 AT4 have proven
to have little effect against field fortifications and buildings. The M141 BDM
was designed to better enhance the destruction of these fortifications. Its
warhead contains a dual-mode fuze that automatically adjusts for the type of
target on impact. For soft targets, such as sandbagged bunkers, the M141 BDM
warhead automatically adjusts to delayed mode, hits the target with high kinetic
energy; this energy propels the warhead through the barrier and into the
fortification or building where the fuze detonates the warhead and causes
greater damage. Soldiers should not expect to severely damage these type of
targets with the M72-series LAW or M136 AT4. However, if the alternatives shown
in the table below, are used, Soldiers may be able to gain a temporary
advantage.

 

AIM POINT EFFECT WHEN WEAPON IS FIRED AT
AIM POINT
RECOMMENDED FIRING TECHNIQUE

BUNKER OR FIGHTING POSITION

Firing Port or Aperture Rounds fired into firing ports or apertures may be wasted:
rounds detonate inside rear of position, causing little structural damage to
the position or to the equipment or personnel within, unless they are hit
directly. The M136 AT4 produces less effect than the M72-series LAW.
Coordinate fire:
Fire shoulderlaunched munition at a point 6 to 12 inches from the front edge
of the firing ports in the berm. Fire small arms at the bunker or position
to prevent personnel within from returning fire.
Berm Firing at the
berm causes the round to detonate outside the fighting position or inside
the berm, creating only a small hole in the berm, dust, or minor structural
damage to the position, but no damage to personnel or equipment unless they
are hit directly. The M136 AT4 produces less effect than the M72-series LAW.
 
Window The round may
travel completely through the structure before detonating; if not, it
creates dust and causes minor structural damage to the rear wall, but little
damage to personnel or equipment, unless they are hit directly. The M136 AT4
produces less effect than the M72-series LAW.
Fire 6 to 12
inches from the sides or bottom of a window. Light antiarmor rounds explode
on contact with brick or concrete, creating an opening whose size is
determined by the type of round used.
Wall The round
detonates on contact, creating dust and causing a small hole and minor
structural damage, but little damage to personnel or equipment, unless they
are hit directly.
 
Corner Corners are
reinforced and thus harder to penetrate than other parts of a wall. Any
light antiarmor round will detonate sooner on a corner than on a less dense
surface. Detonation should occur in the targeted room, creating dust and
causing overpressure, which can temporarily incapacitate personnel inside
the structure near the point of detonation. The M136 AT4 causes more
overpressure than the M72-series LAW.
 

Reference: FM 3-23.25, Shoulder Launched
Munitions