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Family of Scatterable Mines - FASCAM

The family of scatterable mines adds new dimension to mine warfare, providing the maneuver commander with a rapid, flexible means of delaying, harassing, paralyzing, canalizing, or wearing down the enemy forces in both offensive and defensive operations. Mines can force the enemy into kill zones, change their direction of attack, spend time in clearing operations, or take evasive actions. FASCAM presents an array of air and FA-delivered scatterable mines available to maneuver force commanders. The systems- GATOR (USAF Delivered), VOLCANO (ground or air delivered), ADAM/RAAM (artillery delivered) and MOPMS (Modular Pack Mine System) have special considerations such as planning time, availability, survivability of system and logistical requirements.

Scatterable mine systems enable the tactical commanders to emplace minefields in enemy held terrain, contaminated territory, or in others areas where it is not possible to emplace conventional minefields. They are designed to be delivered or dispensed remotely by aircraft, artillery, or by ground dispenser. Minefields are laid without a clear pattern. All FASCAM mines have a active life cycle and self-destruct (SD) time after their active life has expired. The duration of the active life varies from 4 hours to 15 days depending on the system. FASCAM minefields are planned by the commander's staff engineer in concert with the commander's intent and systems availible. The staff engineer determines location, size, time and density of the minefields. He coordinates with appropriate staff officers to ensure systems are available at the time and location for placement.


Faster response. Units can place scatterable mines faster than conventional mines, so they provide the commander with greater flexibility, and allow reaction to changing in situations. The use of scatterable mines can allow the commander to maintain or regain the initiative by allowing units to act faster than the enemy. This also helps preserve scarce mine resources.

Remote emplacement. Scatterable mines are remotely placed. This enhances battlefield agility and allows the maneuver commander to rapidly place mines to best exploit enemy weaknesses. Commanderís can use scatterable mines as a situational obstacle; as a reserve obstacle emplacement capability; and to directly attack enemy formations through disrupt, fix, turn, and block. Modern fusing, sensing, and antidisturbance devices allow scatterable mines to better defeat enemy attempts to reduce the minefield.

Increased tactical flexibility. After allowing enough time for the minefield to self-destruct, the minefield is cleared, and the commander can move through an area that was previously denied to enemy or friendly forces. In many cases, the self-destruct period may be set at only a few hours. This feature allows for effective counterattacks to the enemyís flanks and rear areas.

Efficiency. There are a variety of ways to deliver and place scatterable mines. Methods include delivery by fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, artillery, or ground vehicles. They satisfy the high-mobility requirements of modern warfare. Scatterable mines are much smaller and lighter than conventional mines and require less manpower, equipment and tonnage to place.

Increased lethality. Scatterable AT mines use a self-forging fragmentation (SFF) created from a two-sided Miznay-Shardin (M-S) plate charge to produce a full-width kill. In simple terms, a metal plate is formed into a super-dense molten rock that punches a hole in the belly of the tank. This produces an M-Kill against the vehicle engine, track, or drive train; a firepower kill against the vehicle weapon system; or a K-Kill in which the on-board sets off ammunition, which kills or incapacitates the crew. The scatterable AT mine can kill any tank in the world. In order to form the SFF; the mine requires a standoff between the vehicle and the target. Mines must also be nearly perpendicular to the target (lying on either side). The two- sided design of the M-S plate allows the mine to successfully attack the target while lying on either side. Trip wires actuate scatterable AP mines and utilize a blast/fragmentation-type kill mechanism.


Extensive coordination. Scatterable mines are very dynamic weapon systems and require great care to ensure proper coordination with higher, adjacent, and subordinate units. Brigades must notify all affected units of the location and duration of scatterable minefields in order to prevent friendly casualties. Recording and reporting procedures for scatterable mines exist to help minimize this problem.

Proliferation of targets. Some commanders may regard scatterable mines as an easy solution to tactical problems. Commander must carefully evaluated, and prioritize tactical requests. Indiscriminate use of scatterable mines results in rapid depletion of a unitís basic load. Controlled supply rates (CSRs) will probably be a constraint in all theaters.

Visibility. Scatterable mines are very effective, even though they lie exposed on the surface of the ground because they are relatively small and have natural colorings. Using scatterable mines in conjunction with fires and obscurants increases their effectiveness and strains the enemyís command and control.

Accuracy. Units cannot lay scatterable mines with the same accuracy as conventional mines; however, their self-destruct capability eliminates the need for recovering them. Remotely delivered scatterable mine systems are as accurate as conventional artillery or tactical aircraft-delivered munitions.

Orientation. 5 to 15 percent of scatterable mines will come to rest on their edge. If there is mud or snow more than 10 centimeters deep, mines will be in the higher percentile. Classified lethality data provides for 10 percent of scatterable mines to rest on their edge. When employing the area denial artillery munition (ADAM) and the remote antiarmor mine (RAAM) in over 10 centimeters of snow, units should use high-angle fire and increase the number of mines. Using AP mines in snow may be less effective because it hinders the deployment of trip wires. Melting snow may also cause mines to change position and activate antidisturbance features.

Antipersonnel Mines

There are two general categories of AP SCATMINEs--wedge-shaped and cylindrical .


Characteristics of AP SCATMINEs

Delivery System
Arming Time
SD Time
Explosive Weight
Mine Weight
Number of Mines
M67 155-mm artillery (ADAM) D502 45 sec
2 min
Trip wire Bounding
20% 4 hr 21 g
Comp A5
540 g 36 per M731 projectile
M72 155-mm artillery (ADAM) D501 45 sec
2 min
Trip wire Bounding
20% 48 hr 21 g
Comp A5
540 g 36 per M692 projectile
M74 Flipper K151 45 min Trip wire Blast frag 20% 5 days
15 days
540 g Comp B4 1.44 kg 5 per sleeve
BLU 92/B USAF (Gator) K291
2 min Trip wire Blast frag 100% 4 hr
48 hr
15 days
540 g Comp B4 1.44 kg 22 per CBU 89/B dispenser
M77 MOPMS K022 2 min Trip wire Blast frag 0% 4 hr (recycle up to 3 times) 540 g Comp B4 1.44 kg 4 per M131 dispenser
Volcano Ground/air K045 4 min Trip wire Blast frag 0% 4 hr
48 hr
15 days
540 g Comp B4 1.44 kg 1 per M87 canister

The M67 and M72 AP SCATMINEs are wedge-shaped and dispensed from an ADAM projectile, which is a special 155-millimeter artillery munition. Each mine weighs 540 grams and is 7 centimeters high.

The M74, BLU 92/B, M77, and Volcano AP SCATMINEs are all cylindrical in shape. They are 6 centimeters high and 12 centimeters in diameter. Cylindrical AP SCATMINEs kill enemy soldiers through the combined effects of blast and fragmentation. Each mine contains 540 grams of composition B4 as its main charge. The charge detonates upon actuation and shatters the mine's metal casing to produce shrapnel. Shrapnel is propelled upward and outward from the mine and produces fatal casualties to a distance of 15 meters. Each mine has eight trip wires (four on the top and four on the bottom) that deploy after ground impact up to 12 meters from the mine. Trip wires are similar in appearance to very fine thread; they are olive-drab green in color and weighted at the free end. A tension of 405 grams applied to one trip wire is enough to create a break in the electrical circuit and cause the mine to detonate.


All AT SCATMINEs have similar functional characteristics. They are cylindrical in shape, weigh approximately 1.8 kilograms, contain 585 grams of cyclonite (RDX) explosive as the main charge, and have a magnetically induced fuse. The characteristics of each AT SCATMINE are summarized in Table 3-2.


Characteristics of AT SCATMINEs

Delivery System
Arming Time
SD Time
Explosive Weight
Mine Weight
Number of Mines
M73 155-mm artillery (RAAM) D503 45 sec
2 min
Magnetic M-S plate 20% 48 hr 585 g RDX 1.7 kg 9 per M718 projectile
M70 155-mm artillery (RAAM) D509 45 sec
2 min
Magnetic M-S plate 20% 4 hr 585 g RDX 1.7 kg 9 per M741 projectile
M75 Flipper K184 45 min Magnetic M-S plate 20% 5 days
15 days
585 g RDX 1.7 kg 5 per sleeve
BLU 91/B USAF (Gator) K291
2 min Magnetic M-S plate NA 4 hr
48 hr
15 days
585 g RDX 1.7 kg 72 per CBU 89/B dispenser
M76 MOPMS K022 2 min Magnetic M-S plate NA 4 hr
(recycle up to 3 times)
585 g RDX 1.7 kg 17 per M131 dispenser
Volcano Ground/air K045 2 min
30 sec
Magnetic M-S plate NA 4 hr
48 hr
15 days
585 g RDX 1.7 kg 5 per M87 canister; 6 per M87A1 canister

AT SCATMINEs are designed to produce a K-Kill (kill the crew of the vehicle) instead of an M-Kill. They produce a kill by using an SFF warhead (created from a two-sided M-S plate). The warhead penetrates the vehicle's belly armor, and spalling metal from the vehicle (created by the mine blast or secondary explosions) kills occupants instantly. Even though the crew is killed, the drive train may be undamaged and the vehicle may continue to move. On enemy tanks with autoloaders, the detonation of rounds in the belly-mounted ammunition carousel is very likely. The mine may not achieve a kill when the track of an armored vehicle runs directly over it.

All mines have a safe-arm time from (45 seconds to 2 minutes). When mines fail to arm they will self-destruct immediately. SD times are not exact, mines actually self-destruct in a window between 80 to 100 percent of their SD time ie. mines with a 4 hour SD time will start to SD in 3 hours 12 minutes. If a mine fails to SD it should be treated as UXO.


GATOR 2 MIN 4 HR 48 HR/15 D
ADAM/RAAM .001, .002, .004 200 X 200 1400 X 1400
.001, .002, .004 400 X 400 1500 X 1500
VOLCANO (GND) 0.01 1195 X 170 235 ALL SIDES
(AIR) 0.0067 1000 X 150 235 ALL SIDES
MOPMS 0.01 35 - 180 DEG 235 ALL SIDES
GATOR 0.003 650 X 200 275 ALL SIDES

Two types of minefields can be developed with FASCAM--planned minefield and target of opportunity minefields.

Planned minefields begin with the development of the scheme of maneuver and then the barrier and/or obstacle plan by the G3 and/or S3 and engineer. Before deciding on the employment of ADAM and/or RAAMS, the FSCOORD is brought into the planning process to provide guidance on the availability of FA mines and delivery units.

Minefields employed against targets of opportunity (unplanned) must be emplaced immediately because of the tactical nature of the targets. They are requested through the fire support channels at any level. Once the maneuver brigade or division commander has approved the use of FA mines, they can be emplaced appropriately. Normally, targets of opportunity are used when the delivery of the mines can be observed. Aimpoints for target of opportunity minefields can be computed as in a planned minefield. However, this will be time-consuming and may not meet the demands of the tactical situation. Therefore, it is recommended that units establish an SOP for a "standard minefield" to fire when the tactical situation requires an immediate minefield. For example, the unit SOP may be for a 400 x 400 minefield, high angle, medium density, with two aimpoints. The SOP will allow FSOs to determine the number of target of opportunity minefields that are available for the maneuver commander. This determination is based on the unit's FASCAM unit basic load (UBL).

FASCAM employment is based on a concept known as planning modules. The planning module for RAAMS low angle is 200 meters x 200 meters. The planning module for RAAMS high angle and for ADAM low or high angle is 400 meters x 400 meters. This does not mean that the minefield planner cannot request a minefield that is larger than the planning module. In any FASCAM minefield, the requesting agency defines the minefield size in terms of the length, width, and attitude. The length of the minefield is always the longest axis. The concept of the planning modules is based on the minefield width. In other words, the width of all minefields must be in multiples of the planning module defined above. The FDO will use the length, width, and planning module to determine the number of linear sheafs required to establish the required minefield. The linear sheafs will evenly divide each module and will be parallel to the long axis (length) of the minefield.

A density of .001 means that there will be approximately one mine every 1,000 square meters. In other words, there will be one mine in every 32- x 32 meter area. These density numbers are used for planning purposes only. Dispersion of the projectiles in the target area will dictate the actual pattern of mines.




The safety zone includes the area where stray mines could possibly land. This is the area where the commander must preclude any friendly forces from maneuvering during the minefieldís life cycle. If an AT mine, oriented on its side, self-destructs, the explosively formed penetrator can theoretically travel 2,000 feet or 640 meters. This is the maximum fragment hazard zone. However, the chances of being struck are negligible at this distance. Tests indicate that acceptable risk for maneuver is the distance over 235 meters from the outer edges of the minefieldís safety zone. This fragment hazard zone is also associated with the Gator and MOPMS AT mines. When the MOPMS is used for protective minefield missions, commanders must be made aware of the fragment hazard.


Safety Zone

Frag Hazard Zone


500 -1,500 meters from aim pt(s). Depends on the delivery source.

Add 235 meters to the outside dimensions of the safety zone.


925 x 475 from aim pt(s).

1,395 x 945 meters from aim pt(s).

Grnd Volcano

Air Volcano

1,150 x 160 meters from centerline.

1,150 x 200 meters from centerline.

235 meters from start/stop pt(s) and centerlines.


55 meters to front,

50 meters to side, and 20 meters to rear of dispenser.

Add 235 meters to the safety zoneís dimensions.

Safety Zones for ADAM/RAAM:








RAAMS 4 500 X 500 500 X 500
LOW ANGLE 7 550 X 550 500 X 500
10 700 X 700 550 X 550
12 850 X 850 550 X 550
14 1000 X 1000 650 X 650
16 1050 X 1050 650 X 650
17.5 1200 X 1200 650 X 650
ADAM 4 700 X 700 700 X 700
LOW ANGLE 7 750 X 750 700 X 700
10 850 X 850 750 X 750
12 1050 X 1050 750 X 750
14 1200 X 1200 850 X 850
16 1250 X 1250 850 X 850
17.5 1400 X 1400 850 X 850
RAAMS & ADAM 4 750 X 750 700 X 700
HIGH ANGLE 7 900 X 900 700 X 700
10 1050 X 1050 750 X 750
12 1200 X 1200 750 X 750
14 1400 X 1400 850 X 850
16 1500 X 1500 850 X 850
17.5 1400 X 1400 850 X 850

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FAS | Military | DOD 101 | Systems | Land Warfare |||| Index | Search | Join FAS

Maintained by Robert Sherman
Originally created by John Pike
Updated Saturday, February 19, 2000 6:14:48 PM