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15cm luft Minenwerfer M15

Trench artillery

Contributor :
Massimo (Flickr) Foti     
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Location :
Kalemegdan Military Museum
Coordinates : Lat : 44.82360 / Long : 20.45210
General comments on this surviving gun :

Identical items in the same location : 1
Items covered by this file : 1

Historic and technical information
Denomination :     15cm luft MW M15 Origin :       ( Maschinenfabrik Esslingen)          

Historic context :

In may 1915, the German company Ehrhardt und Sehmer came to present to the Austro-Hungarian Military Technical Commission (TMK) the 10.5cm pneumatic mortar that had already been adopted by Germany (that used it under the denomination '10.5cm Pressgas Minenwerfer system Ehrhartd', or 'Luftmörser', firing 6kg projectiles called 'Brochet' by the French soldiers). 25 such mortars were ordered in July 1915 after some adaptations, and introduced on the front line in March 1916.

But in July 1915, another German company, the Maschinenfabrik Esslingen presented to the German experts another pneumatic mortar more powerful, with a 15cm caliber. The Austro-Hungary Army representative who was assisting to this demonstration was impressed, so that after some more tests in Austria, an order was passed. The first 4 '15cm M15 luft MW mortars arrived in the units in October 1915. A total of 105 other mortars were delivered in 1915 and 1916.

The use of pneumatic mortars was providing a huge progress in stealth, since their shots was making no smoke and almost no sound, but their range was real modest. Fed by a compressed air cylinder having a 12 rounds shooting capacity, this little mortar was shooting ovoid shells equipped with the Pappenberg German fuze (as for the Lanz mortar). It was replaced by the new pneumatic mortars that Austro-Hungaria developped in remarkable variaty during WW1.

Technical data :

  • Complete description : 15cm pneumatic trench mortar M 1915 Esslingen
  • Design year : 1915
  • Calibre : 150.00 mm
  • Weight in firing position : 207 kg
  • Weight for transportation :
  • Tube length in calibres : 0.00
  • Grooves : 0 smooth bore
  • Projectile weight : inconnu, 1.5 kg d'explosifs
  • Initial speed :
  • Fire rate :
  • Range : 250 to 500 m
  • Elevation range :
  • Direction range : 360 degrees range