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early VT fuze f. mortar round, US


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This early produced proximity fuze was designed for the 81mm HE-mortar round. The fuze (which is similar to the T-172 VT mortar fuze, which was developed by the University of Florida) is made of brass with a loop type antenna to get a more forward-looking angle of sensitivity. Generator turbine & power supply assembly was mounted in the base part of the fuze.
It never made it out of the experimental status.
A very rare fuze in posession of the MTRC reference collection.
Enjoy it
Mrfuze, USA


  • Early mor VT fuze, brass, 1, US,.jpg
    Early mor VT fuze, brass, 1, US,.jpg
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British 81mm Prox Fuze

As a trainee electronics engineer with EMI Ltd in the 60's I worked for a while on proximity fuzes and in the lab we had an 81mm Mortar Bomb fitted with a rather conventional proximity fuse (N97 type, yes Naval) but powered by a small generator made from a hand demolition exploder fitted up with two contra-rotating vanes. Brits may remember the exploder as that issued with the Rapid Cratering Charge. When the factory closed in the 1990s I tried to recover the bomb for the School of Ammunition but alas I could not convince the dispirited management of the wisdom of preserving this bit of history.

Any reason we went the generator route as opposed to 'thermal battery' or modifying the original power source to operate without the need for rotation? (IIRC our early VT fuzes required to be rotating so that the electrolye was in contact with the electrodes that were on the periphery of the cell).


British 81mm Prox Fuze


The use of the little generator was obvious for us since we made them in the factory. I have to say though that the fuze was in the lab when I arrived so it may have been around for some years. I expect only the one was made.

I just thought it was a neat idea in engineering terms (or maybe I should say in over-engineering terms). More practical in a clean electronics laboratory than a muddy fire position but then these things aren't for firing are they?