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D-20 / M-55 152-mm Towed Gun-Howitzer
Type-66 152-mm Towed Gun-Howitzer

The D-20 152mm Gun-Howitzer was built shortly after the end of WWII by the F. Petrov Design Bureau in the Soviet Union and was first seen in public during the 1955 May Day parade in Red Square, Moscow. The D-20 is a very large gun, equating to 6-inch caliber, and is heavy for a simple towed carriage. Its restricted mobility, however, is somewhat compensated for by its range of 17,230 meters.

The D-20, also known as the M1955 or M-55, was the newest 152-mm towed howitzer in the Soviet and Warsaw Pact inventory when first introduced in 1955, replacing the heavier, less powerful, 152-mm gun-howitzer ML-20 (M1937). It is organic to army/front-level artillery and to the artillery regiment/brigade of a tank or combined arms army, while the self-propelled version 2S3 is found in the artillery regiment organic to motorized rifle and tank divisions. The D-20 was exported to all Warsaw Pact armies (except Bulgaria). The Type-66 is a Chinese version, which has been exported to Iraq.

The D-20 uses the same carriage as the 122mm field gun D-74. This short split-trail carriage is distinguished by caster wheels (folded upward for travel) at the end of each trail; a prominent base plate connected to the bottom forward cradle; and a scalloped, winged shield with traveling central portion. The tube, however, differs from that of the D-74inthat it is much shorter (29 versus 47 cal), larger in diameter, and has a larger size double-baffle muzzle brake. Both guns have a two-cylinder recoil mechanism above the tube, and both tubes are prominently stepped, with a semi-automatic, vertically-sliding, wedge breech block. Both guns also fire similar case-type, variable-charge, separate-loading ammunition. The circular firing jack and caster wheels make it possible to rotate the whole gun swiftly through up to 360 degrees. It also has direct fire sights for both day and night and is capable of engaging armored targets with direct fire. It can be towed by truck or armored tractor (AT-L).

The D-20 was the first 152-mm cannon system to incorporate a semiautomatic vertical-sliding-wedge breech block. It fires FRAG-HE, OF-540 with a RGM-2 Fuze Model at a rate of 5-6 rounds per minute with a maximum firing range of 10 miles. Although the ammunition for the system was not changed, modifications allowed a slightly higher rate of fire to be achieved (6 rounds per minute rather than 4), although the sustained rate of fire was unchanged. Because the carriage is based on that of the 122-mm gun D-74, the D-20 cannot be elevated above 45.


Alternative Designations M1955 or M-55
Date of Introduction 1955
Proliferation At least 13 countries
Crew 8
Carriage 122-mm gun D-74
Combat Weight (mt) 5.7
Chassis Length Overall (m)
Travel Position 8.10
Firing Position 8.69
Height Overall (m) 2.52
Width Overall (m)
Travel Position 2.35
Firing Position INA
Towing Speed (km/h)
Max Road 60
Max Off-Road 30
Max Cross-Country 15
Fording Depths (m) .5
Emplacement Time (min) 2.5
Displacement Time (min) 2.5
Prime Mover AT-S Tracked vehicle; MT-LB; Ural-375; Ural-4320
Main Armament
Caliber, Type, Name 152-mm, canon
Barrel Length (cal) 25
Rate of Fire (rpm)
Burst 5-6
Normal INA
Sustained 1 (65 rounds the first hour)
Loader Type Manual
Breech Type Vertical sliding wedge
Muzzle Brake Type Double flared
Traverse ()
Left 29
Right 29
Total 58
Elevation () (-/+)-5/+45
Indirect Fire PG-1M Panoramic Telescope (PANTEL)
Direct Fire OP 4M
Collimator K-1
Gun Display Unit None
Fire Control Computer None
Caliber, Type, Name
152-mm Frag-HE, OF32
Indirect Fire Range (m)
Minimum Range 4600
Maximum Range 17,400
Complete Projectile Weight (kg) 43.56 (OF25)
Muzzle Velocity 655 m/s
Fuze Type V-90 PD 152-mm, HEAT, BP-540
Direct Fire Range (m)
Minimum Range 0
Maximum Range 1000
Armor Penetration (mm) INA
Complete Projectile Weight (kg) 27.00
Muzzle Velocity 655 m/s
Fuze Type GPV-3 PD 152-mm Frag-HE, OF-96
Indirect Fire Range (m)
Minimum Range INA
Maximum Range 24,400
Complete Projectile Weight (kg) 43.56 (OF-64)
Muzzle Velocity INA
Fuze Type PD
Other Ammunition Types DPICM, DPICM-BB, Incendiary, Ex-pendable Jammer, Chemical, Flechette, Semi-active laser-guided Kras-nopol- M Frag-HE

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Maintained by Robert Sherman
Originally created by John Pike
Updated Saturday, June 19, 1999 6:37:33 AM