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  1. #1
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    COFRAM What ordnance?

    In a declassified Presidential Breifing(Top Secret) 3 Feb 1968 the text includes an interesting statement. The use of tactical nuclear weapons should not be required......because of the authority to use COFRAM. If the answer is not still classified what is COFRAM? It has been suggested that this was a fuel/air weapon.

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    Cofrom

    COFRAM - Controlled fragmentation of munitions

  3. #3
    18pounder
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    Quote Originally Posted by proditto View Post
    In a declassified Presidential Breifing(Top Secret) 3 Feb 1968 the text includes an interesting statement. The use of tactical nuclear weapons should not be required......because of the authority to use COFRAM. If the answer is not still classified what is COFRAM? It has been suggested that this was a fuel/air weapon.

    It was an american initiative .
    ''The Contrlled Fragmentation of Munitions''
    COFRAM was a testing program to test all sorts of munitions.

    There was a 155mm COFRAM round that had a great fragmentation effect and was used during the 1960' and 70's.
    It expolded above target and showered the aera below with thousands of bomlets,either exlosive or ball bearing type.
    It was considered for use in Vietnam by the U.S.
    I supose it was simular effect to a shrapnell shell of ww1!!....but alot bigger and more sofisticated.

    Thats all i could find in my books.
    Last edited by 18pounder; 30th December 2009 at 02:02 PM.

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    The 155mm shell released golf ball sized spheres that spread wings when released from shell at 1500 ft. When the sphere hit the ground it launched back up to 5 feet (Asian size) then exploded. I guess sub munition? Dano
    Last edited by dano1917; 30th December 2009 at 02:37 PM.

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    The first tactical use of the COFRAM or " Firecracker round " was on the 7th of feb 1967 in Vietnam 28 rounds fired followed up by HE and air support. I will try and dig up some more info when I get home, best regards Weasel.
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  6. #6
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    What has been so far stated is generally correct, the COFRAM program went by a couple of different names, it was largely an Army effort to expand into submunitionsfor better anti-personnel effects from projectiles. A couple of documents also list them as APERS, which was later limited more to flechette type munitions. The term COFRAM was pretty much dropped in the early 70s. After another development surge in the 1980s the new rounds were instead referred to as ICM projos - improved conventional munitions. Same types, different designs and loads.
    All dug or live ordnance shown in my posts is under EOD control and has been or will be dealt with accordingly by EOD personnel

  7. #7
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    Cofram

    Thanks for all the data. The one thing that is not answered is the statement that Tactical Nukes were not required as AUTHORITY for the use of COFRAM had been given Why if it was a conventional munition like a 155mm gun round was this 'authority' needed?
    Incidentally the same paper states that in or around Khe Sanh there were 18 105m 6 155mm and near 16 175mm guns. B-52 strikes were also available. One of these must have been the COFRAM delivery method. During a big attack Feb 1968 COFRAM was 'available' for use but was not used but 'will be considered for use at the appropriate time' . Seems a lot of authority for a simple munition!

  8. #8
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    It is a good question. A better one might be, why were tactical nukes under consideration?

    There has always been a lot of contraversy over the use of submunitions, it continues today. Some is due to confusion - if you are familiar with the construction of some of the smallest submunitions, BLU-43/44 dragons-teeth, the XM series of gravel mines - these are munitions 1-3 inches across, made either of cloth pouches or plastic bits that look not unlike maple seeds. During this period both were in heavy use, and it was also about this time that the US came under accusations of sowing explosive "children's toys". This caused public outcry and heavy scrutiny over many programs, especially as the war and many of the programs (use of riot control agents by the ton, accusations of the use of nerve agent, etc) were already under fire at home.

    If you recall, one of the biggest military complaints from the war was that it was decided and fought based on politics. I would suggest that at this stage and with this program the situation was the same. Any decision required approval at the highest levels, lest there be political repercussions. Don't know for certain that this was the case, but it would seem consistent with many of the other things that we do know from this period.
    All dug or live ordnance shown in my posts is under EOD control and has been or will be dealt with accordingly by EOD personnel

  9. #9
    John D. Bartleson Jr.
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    Controlled Fragmentation Munitions;

    Code name for munitions first used in Vietnam. Now comporomised , through use , these tiny submunitions were made for 5 inch, 8 inch artillery projectiles, 40mm grenades, hand grenades, and dropped in cluster aerial bombs.
    I had the opportunity to participate in the container functioning phase of testing at Aberdeen Proving Ground. This phase tested the artillery projectiles which were fired down range into a water impact site to preclude recovery by anyone but our divie team and also to reduce impact from distorting the containers. It was a most interesting operation that requred 100% recovery of the sub munitions. I believe the 40mm grenade remains one the most effect use of controlled fragmentation. We also participated in the recovery testing of 'Davey Crockett".
    Regards,
    John aka Bart

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    Also loaded (during Viet Nam) in the 105mm, 155mm, 4.2-inch mortar and 16-inch.
    All dug or live ordnance shown in my posts is under EOD control and has been or will be dealt with accordingly by EOD personnel

 

 
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