|This page is about the American-made rocket M8. For other uses, see M8 (Disambiguation).|
The 4.5-inch (114 mm) M8 fin-stabilised rocket is approximately 33 in (0.83 m) in length and 40 lb (18.1 kg) and is almost an equivalent of a 105 mm Shell M1. This rocket utilises an M4 fuse which explodes after a 0.015-sec delay set off by auxiliary M1 booster.
The components of the rocket break down into three separate sections, the fuse, shell and motor body. The shell of the rocket or the head is made up of a warhead body fitted with a burster tube. The burster tube itself extends from the shell through the rocket body and through the rocket motor, the purpose of this is to expand the explosive capability of the rocket by utilising the rocket motor as an additional source of fragmentation in the explosion. Once fired, folding fins around the tail flange will extend and spin-stabilise the rocket.
The M8 rocket requires a tube launcher to launch (as opposed to being installed directly to external hardpoints) and this is accomplished by mounting an M10 cluster launcher to the underside of the aircraft's wings or fuselage belly. The M10 is a cluster of three 10-foot tubes manufactured from plastic (M14s are made from steel and M15s are constructed of magnesium alloy) and are banded together in six places and are secured to the aircraft via two mounting straps, front and rear. The rear strap also bears the electrical connections which link up to the rockets once in the tubes as the firing links. The release and contact mechanisms are protected from flying links and fired casings ejected from the wing guns to prevent accidental damage or drop release of the M10 launcher.
Vehicles equipped with this weapon
|Vehicles equipped with this weapon|
|P-39||P-39N-0 · P-39Q-5|
|P-47||P-47D-22-RE · ▄Thunderbolt Mk.1 · P-47D-28|
|P-51D||P-51D-5 · P-51D-10 · ␗P-51D-20 · P-51D-20-NA · P-51D-30 · P-51H-5-NA · ␗P-51K|
|Twin-engine fighters||P-38G-1 · XP-38G · P-38J-15 · Bong's P-38J-15|
|Medium tanks||Calliope · M26 T99|
|Maximum speed||260 m/s|
|Explosive mass||1.95 kg TNTeq|
After slamming into a target a slight delay will set off the explosive mass of the missile, causing the TNT shell to detonate along with fragmenting the rocket body and motor. Damage is caused by both the high explosive and fragmentation.
Comparison with analogues
Give a comparative description of rockets that have firepower equal to this weapon.
Usage in battles
The M8 rockets are typically mounted on an aircraft in groups of three (usually two launchers of three). The M8 rocket is typically best utilised against personnel, installations and light armoured vehicles due to the fantastic fragmentation of this rocket upon impact and explosion.
Pros and cons
- Lightweight, able to mount on fighter aircraft
- Can be used against bombers
- Inaccurate, best fired in groups to increase the chance of hitting a target
- Increases aerodynamic drag, decreasing flight efficiency
The American M8 Rocket, known as the "M8 Rocket Launcher," is a significant chapter in the history of World War II artillery. It was developed during the early 1940s to address the need for a versatile and mobile ground-based rocket artillery system. The M8 Rocket Launcher's design featured a truck-mounted launch platform equipped with multiple launch tubes capable of firing 4.5-inch M8 rockets, which were often colloquially referred to as "Calliope" rockets. This system was developed to provide rapid and concentrated firepower on the battlefield.
One of the standout features of the M8 Rocket Launcher was its adaptability. It could be mounted on a variety of vehicles, most notably the Sherman tank, leading to the creation of the "Sherman Calliope." This configuration enabled armored units to deliver devastating indirect fire support while remaining mobile, a significant advantage in dynamic warfare. The M8 rocket system was instrumental in the development of barrage fire tactics, involving the rapid launching of multiple rockets to saturate a specific area with explosive firepower.
The M8 Rocket Launcher had a profound impact on the course of World War II, especially for American and Allied forces. It played a pivotal role in critical campaigns such as the Normandy landings (D-Day), where it provided essential fire support for the assault troops. The sight and sound of M8 rockets firing was not only intimidating but also highly effective in supporting ground forces during the intense combat of World War II. After the war, as military technology advanced, the M8 Rocket Launcher was gradually phased out in favor of more sophisticated rocket artillery systems.
Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:
- reference to the article about the variant of the weapon;
- references to approximate analogues by other nations and research trees.
- US Rockets and Fuzes - United States Navy Bomb Disposal Manual, 15 May 1945, pg. 14
- Hedekin, Thomas B., The Field Artillery Journal, October 1946, Volume 36, No. 10, page 568
- OS-9-69 Rockets and Launchers, All Types, The Ordnance School - Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, February 1944, pages 65, 67 and 68.
- War Thunder Forum Bug Report: M8 Rocket Performance Error
- Wikipedia - M8 (rocket)