M47 Patton


M47 Patton

Infobox Weapon
name=M47 Patton


caption=
origin= United States
type=Main battle tank
is_vehicle=yes
service= 1952 - 1989? (USA)
used_by=
wars=
designer=
design_date=
manufacturer=Detroit Arsenal Tank Plant, American Locomotive Co.
unit_cost=
production_date= 1951 - ???
number= 8676
variants=
weight=convert|46|t|ST|lk=out|1 combat ready
length=convert|27|ft|11|in|m|2|abbr=on
width=convert|11|ft|6.25|in|m|2|abbr=on
height=convert|11|ft|m|2|abbr=on
crew=5 (commander, gunner, loader, driver, assistant driver)
armour=convert|4|in|mm|abbr=on
primary_armament=90 mm gun M36 71 rounds
secondary_armament=0.5 in (12.7 mm) M2 machine gun
2 × 7.62 mm machine gun
engine=Continental AVDS-1790-5B V12, air cooled, twin turbocharged gasoline engine.
engine_power=convert|810|HP|kW|abbr=on
transmission=General Motors CD-850-4, 2 ranges forward, 1 reverse
fuel_capacity=231.94 gallons (878 liters)
pw_ratio=17.6 hp/tonne
suspension=Torsion bar
vehicle_range=convert|81|mi|km|abbr=on
speed=convert|30|mph|km/h|abbr=on

The M47 Patton I was the second tank of the Patton series, and one of the U.S Army's principal main battle tanks of the Cold War, with models in service from the early 1950s to the late 1980s. The tank belongs to the Patton family of tanks, named after General George S. Patton, commander of the U.S. Third Army during World War II and one of the earliest American advocates for the use of tanks in battle. It was a further development of the M46 Patton tank.

The M47 was the U.S. Army and Marine Corps primary tank, intended to replace the M46 Patton and M4 Sherman tanks. The M47 was widely used by U.S. Cold War allies, both SEATO and NATO countries, and was the only Patton series tank that never saw combat while in US service.

Although roughly similar (from a distance) to the later M48s and M60s, these were completely new tank designs. Many different M47 Patton models remain in service internationally. The M47 was the last US tank to have a ball-mounted machine gun in the hull.

History

Although a new power plant corrected the mobility and reliability problems of the M26 Pershing, the subsequently renamed M46 was considered a stopgap solution that would be replaced later by the T42 medium tank. However, after fighting erupted in Korea, the Army decided it needed the new tank earlier than planned. It was deemed that there was not enough time to finish the development of the T42 and fix various problems that were likely to emerge in a new design. The final decision was to produce another interim solution, with the turret of the T42 mounted on the familiar hull of the M46. The composite tank, developed by the Detroit Arsenal, was named M47 Patton and entered production in 1951. Its main gun was the M36 90 mm gun with an M12 optical rangefinder fitted. The secondary armament consisted of a .30cal Browning as bow machine gun and the .50cal Browning M2 on a pintle mount on the turret roof.

M47s were used as targets in the 1970s for the M60A1's convert|105|mm|in|abbr=on gun with devastating effect. The 105 mm HEAT round would penetrate the frontal armor with ease. Many M47s in like-new condition met their fate in this manner, showing the M60 crews first hand the effects of modern tank weapons on conventional steel armor.

The M47 was widely used by NATO and SEATO allies as well as other countries, including Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Iran, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Pakistan, Philippines, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan, Turkey and Yugoslavia. In the US, however, it was quickly replaced by the M48.

Combat service

The M47 was used by the Turkish Army, along with M48s, in the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in July and August 1974, with an estimated 200 or more Pattons involved in the action. At least one operational M47, number 092273, was captured intact by the Cypriot National Guard and was reported to be still in service as late as 1993. [The Action of the Captured M47 in Atilla II, Savvas Vlassis]

The M47 was used by Jordan in the Six Day War in 1967. Pakistan used M47s against India in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965. Iran used Pattons against Iraq in the Iran-Iraq war.

Croatia used M47s against the Serbs in the Croatian War of Independence but their performance was considered to be inferior to that of the Soviet T-55s. The Pattons were retired from service immediately after the war, and are now used as gunnery/missile targets during military exercises.

Variants

*M47 - M46 with T42 turret, fitted with the M36 90 mm Gun, and was longer to incorporate a radio, ventilator, and featured a stereoscopic rangefinder.
*M47M - The product of an improvement program started in the late 1960s, the M47M featured the engine and fire control elements from the M60A1. The assistant driver's position was eliminated in favor of additional 90 mm ammunition. Not used by the US; over 800 vehicles were produced for Iran and Pakistan.
*M47ER3 - Spanish armored recovery vehicle.

"Additional Equipment"

*M6 - Earth Moving Tank Mounting Bulldozer. Bulldozer kit for the M47 series.

Operators

*JOR
*flag|Somaliland

Former operators

*AUT
*BEL
*CRO - Over 20 during the Croatian War of Independence, 16 units remained in service by 1996 but were soon retired.
*CYP - One captured vehicle.
*FRA
*GRE
*IRQ - All destroyed or scrapped.
*IRN - 168 (includes M48)
*ITA
*JPN - Evaluation only.
*ROK - retired in 2006 ~ 2007
*NLD
*PAK
*PHI
*POR
*SAU
*ESP
*ROC
*USA
*FRG
*TUR
*YUG - Total of 319 delivered during 1950s

ee also

* M26 Pershing
*M46 Pershing II
*M48 Patton II
*Type 61
*M60
*List of armoured fighting vehicles
*M103 heavy tank
*M1 Abrams

References

External links

* [http://afvdb.50megs.com/usa/m47patton.html AFV Database: M47 Patton]
* [http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/ground/m47.htm GlobalSecurity.org: M47 Patton]
* [http://www.patton-mania.com/ Patton-Mania]
* [http://www.primeportal.net/apc/m47_patton_tank.htm M47 Photos and Walk Arounds on Prime Portal]


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