155mm Ramjet artillery shell

Norwegian ammunition company Nammo, at Eurosatory 2018 showed what it’s calling an “extreme range” artillery concept using solid fuel ramjet propulsion.


in the early 1990s I saw a 105mm solid fuel ramjet projectile at Edgewood Arsenal. Interesting idea! Seems to me to be pretty difficult to build as an effective weapon.



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This idea was developed in the third Reich. And after in the Soviet Union.

Ideas keep coming around as discussed in another current thread. Sometimes the technology becomes available to make them practical.

Did Germany or the Soviet Union ever take them into the test phase, or perhaps into field testing???

The one I saw was interesting because it was a cylindrical projectile with cavities carved inside the bore filled with solid propellant. The nose shock wave was swallowed and oblique shocks reflected down the bore retaining supersonic flow down the bore, in part by the shock waves igniting the propellant. It was one approach to a supersonic combustion ramjet, but I don’t know if it ever achieved supersonic combustion. I don’t think the concept got beyond wind tunnel testing.


Lew, the German design was by Trommsdorff and 150mm projectiles were made and test fired.
Unfortunately I never saw any test reports on them.

Azov, is there any info on the Soviet developments?

The smallest I have heard about was an Oerlikon made 35x228.

Here the German 280mm and 150mm types:

And the remains of a 150mm from the Hillersleben test range (part of the front body cover missing, image from the web):

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And it seems that 155mm RAMJETs are receiving more attention recently as there are also developments from South Korea (Poongsan) and South Africa (DENEL, but wonder if Rheinmetall has it’s fingers in there).




Thanks EOD,

The German are liquid fueled which means the intake must be slowed to subsonic for mixing. Really neat that there is an example surviving.

The South Korean looks like it may be solid fueled which, done right, could allow supersonic flow through the ramjet. The nozzle is hard to see but it could be divergent only which would imply at least sonic flow at the engine exhaust.

Neat technology!!!


A better image of the NAMMO one (from the web):

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Only the fact that Alexander Shirokorad wrote in his books, but it is an unreliable source, there are too many “waters”.

Further details about Trommsdorff’s projects:



I have seen photos of a 16" US Navy Battleship Ram Jet projectile that was a prototype.


Jason, any chance to see these images?

Lacking terminal guidance these rounds seem pretty questionable to me. The engine and fuel take up a considerable amount of the projectile limiting the warhead. Without terminal guidence they seem pretty feeble, except in the anti-armor role which was the intended use of the Edgewood projectile, an extremely high velocity AP round that accelerated on leaving the barrel which would improve accuracy by reduced time of flight, and improve the terminal effects.

I suspect the current set of ramjet projectiles have GPS guidance, thus the fins.


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Lew, only NAMMO is guided by now. For all others (including the German WW2 design) it was/is only about extended ranges.

I wonder if any of the designs may be adapted to use the PGK M1156 kit. That sure would add some momentum to those unguided ones.
The kit:


This is a photo of the 16" projectile I mentioned. Turns out it is called a, “SCRAMJET” not, “RAMJET.” I have a photo of it somewhere sitting on the deck of one of the IOWA CLASS Battleships but can’t find it. I’ll look again tonight.



SCRAMJET is simply Supersonic Combustion Ram Jet as discussed above. Lots of work done on SCRAMJET engines but nothing in production yet that I know of. The goal is sustained flight from Mach 5-10. As far as I know the record is a US test vehicle that in 2013 flew for 3 minutes at Mach 5. I know there have been flights since, but I believe a lot of the work is classified.India has also done some Scramjet work with missiles I believe. Hypersonic missile that Russia recently claimed to have must be scramjet powered for sustained hypersonic flight.

Lots of potential but tough technology.


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Jason, thanks! I knew this image but always understood it was a much smaller caliber.
Would be great to see that other image showing it aboard a ship or where the size can be judged better.

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I love learning from you, Lew and Alex! Off to hunt threw my reference photo collection to find that pic on the Battleship decl. :-)


Finally found the pic in my files!