“The machine guns pin down targets for the mortars. The mortars drive out targets for the machine guns”
The 60mm e-mag commando mortar is a common platoon-level weapon. It resembles a short tube (Holdout -4) with a carrying handle and a shoulder strap. The most obvious difference from older commando mortars is the large loading port just above the breech.
By using a non-pyrotechnic system to project rounds the mortar produces no flash and very little noise. Projectiles of all commando mortars are subsonic. The e-mag commando mortar is treated as having silent ammunition and uses the 16-yard line of the Hearing Distances Table [4eHT, p.158]. The e-mag system also allows greater control of the projectile's initial velocity, allowing range to be controlled without varying the barrel angle. For simplicity treat bomb velocity as 300 yd/s.
The 60mm emag commando mortar is powered by a standard C cell (0.5 lb, 27mm diameter x 27mm tall). Some projectiles contain small power cells that partially recharge the mortar while they are loaded, so typically a user runs out of bombs long before the mortar runs out of power. A C cell provides at least 80 shots.
The mortar's loading port permits faster reloading, particularly when the operator is prone. The port also allows the status of a weapon to be easily ascertained, the presence of a loaded bomb being able to be determined by sight or touch. Since the nose of a bomb is above the bottom edge of the port accidental double-loading of the mortar is avoided. The loading port also mates with automated ammunition feed systems build into some military cybershells.
A display panel above the carrying handle shows the bearing the mortar is aimed towards, the estimated range of the bomb loaded and the barrel angle. The bearing is displayed in mils or degrees and can be set to local magnetic or true north. Range is given in metres and barrel angle in degrees. Typically each reading is displayed in a different colour. This data display can also be transmitted to the user's HUD.
To use the mortar the baseplate is placed on a firm surface. A bomb is loaded if the weapon was not already loaded. Guided by the display reading, the mortar is aimed in the desired direction. Range is set by varying the barrel angle or adjusting a power control on the carrying handle, or a combination of both. When the display shows the desired range the mortar is fired by a trigger set in the carrying handle.
In the event of an aiming system malfunction the carrying handle has a bubble clinometer showing approximate range and barrel angle. A luminous line below the muzzle may be used to aim the weapon.
An additional aiming system is provided by marks on the carrying sling. The kneeling operator places his foot on a mark on the sling and raises the muzzle until the sling is pulled taunt. This places the barrel at the desired angle.
The mortar can be carried with a bomb already loaded, allowing the weapon to be rapidly brought into action.
Three types of ammunition are common. These rounds are also compatible with vehicle-mounted 60mm e-mag gun-mortars:
The illumination round produces a 350 yard radius area for 45 seconds. Both visible and infra-red light variants are available [4e HT p.171].
Smoke rounds typically use white or black PFOG which is either Prismatic or Hot Prism/ Hot Smoke [4e HT p.171 and UT p.160] giving a -10 penalty at the affected wavelengths. Smoke rounds affect a 15 yards radius for 90 seconds and build up at five yards of radius per second.
By 2100 the standard 60mm mortar HE round is a HEMP with the effect 6d x 8 (10) cr + linked 8d cr ex [3d cutting fragmentation]. Main damage is incendiary. These are smart homing rounds that can be programmed to preferentially target vehicles, man-made objects or entrenchments. Such technology has made the platoon-level mortar even more deadly and versatile, now being a weapon that can more effectively engage moving targets.
Short-range riot control rounds are also produced for 60mm e-mag mortars. These only contain enough metal for the e-mag to project them.
An e-mag commando mortar can throw a grappling hook and line 30 yards upwards and forward at -2, providing the grapple is magnetic and the shank can be fitted inside the muzzle.
ARTILLERY (CANNON) (IQ-5)
|6d x 8 (10) cr plus linked 8d cr ex [3d]