The French word flechette means "little arrow" or dart projectile of steel that is sharp and pointed with a vaned tail for stable flight.
Flechettes were first used as an air-dropped weapon in World War I by combatants on both sides. World War I (abbreviated WWI; also known as the First World War, the Great War, and the War to End All These were about four inches long (10 cm) and weighed a couple of ounces (60 g). Dropped from aeroplanes or Zeppelins over enemy trenches or airfields, these gravity missiles were capable of penetrating a helmet and the wearer's skull. Overview Fixed-wing aircraft range from small training and recreational aircraft to Wide-body aircraft and military cargo aircraft. A Zeppelin is a type of Rigid airship pioneered by the German Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin in the early 20th century based on designs he had outlined A trench is a type of excavation or depression in the ground Trenches are generally defined by being deeper than they are wide (as opposed to a wider Gully or Ditch Similar weapons were 'Lazy Dogs' (or 'Devil Dogs'), used by the U. S. in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. These 1 3/4" length (4. 5 cm) bomblets were air-dropped at height in canisters by aircraft or scattered from buckets by helicopter crews, reaching high sub-sonic speeds as they fell. Targeted at enemy personnel and unarmored vehicles, the flechette hit the targets with the force of a bullet.
Smaller flechettes were used in special artillery shells called "beehive" rounds (so named for the very distinctive whistling buzz made by thousands of flechettes flying downrange at supersonic speeds) and intended for use against troops in the open - a ballistic shell packed with flechettes was fired and set off by pressure-sensitive detonators, scattering flechettes and shrapnel in all directions. Artillery (from French artillerie) is a military Combat Arm which employs any apparātus machine Beehive is an Anti-personnel round fired from an Artillery gun packed full of metal darts Flechettes, which are ejected from the shell in front of the They were used in the Vietnam War by artillery gunners to defend their positions against infantry attacks. The Vietnam War, also known as the Second Indochina War, or the Vietnam Conflict, occurred in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia
The use of artillery flechette rounds in populated areas has recently been criticized due to their use by the Israel Defense Forces in the Gaza Strip. The Israel Defense Forces ( IDF) (צְבָא הַהֲגָנָה לְיִשְׂרָאֵל, lit The Gaza Strip (قطاع غزة, רצועת עזה Retzu'at 'Azza) is a coastal strip of land along the Mediterranean Sea, bordering Egypt on the south-west  These criticisms focus on the wide area of effect of artillery flechette rounds, and their use in areas with large civilian populations. Detractors argue that the such use of the rounds conflicts with the Fourth Geneva Convention provisions protecting non-combatants. The Fourth Geneva Convention (or GCIV) relates to the protection of Civilians during times of War " in the hands " of an enemy and under 
10 civilians have been killed in the Gaza Strip by flechette shells since the start of the Palestinian intifada, in September 2000. The army argues that they have used the weapons very selectively in its fight against terrorism. Israeli media reports have said the army uses the shells mainly against mortar crews firing rounds at Israeli civilian settlements. 
IDF Spokespersons justify the use of flechette shells by claiming that the use of this weapon is permitted under international law and that "the use of various types of weapons is done according to the judgment of commanders in the field, and based on the threat posed to the security forces. " Haim Israeli, Assistant to the Defense Minister, wrote to B'Tselem that "the use of flechette shells in combat is not forbidden. In regards to when this weapon is used, the IDF is aware of the need to balance between military need on one hand, and humanitarian concerns and minimization of damage to the civilian population on the other. The policy regarding the use of various types of weapons is determined based on these considerations. "
In April 2008 Reuters reported that an Israeli tank killed a Reuters cameraman in the Gaza Strip along with 5 others. This article is primarily about Reuters prior to its 2008 merger with Thomson  The Israeli tank sprayed cameraman Fadel Shana and the others with darts (flechettes) as he was filming it on the 16th April. Fadel Shana'a (1984/1985&ndash 16 April[[ 008]] was a Palestinian journalist working as a Cameraman for Reuters. Mr Shana and 3 others died instantly whilst another two teenagers died some days later. The victims were aged between 13 and 24 years old. Despite Reuter's demand for an urgent inquiry, Israel has yet to confirm that its tank, filmed firing in the final seconds of the cameraman's surviving video, delivered the fatal round. The attack ripped off Mr Shana's press marked body armour, and medical examination showed several 38 millimetre flechettes had been thrust through his neck, shredding his flesh and severing his spine. He was standing next to his sport utility vehicle which bore "TV" and "Press" markings, filming a panoramic view of an area 1. 5 km away where an Israeli air strike had earlier killed several people. Mr Shana's soundman, Wafa Abu Mizyed, 25, was wounded in the wrist by a dart.
As this video and others of the incident show the kill range is large. In the court case brought against their use by the IDF it was stated "The flechette shell contains a bundle of metal arrows. It is unique in that when it explodes at a certain height above the ground, its arrows are dispersed across a surface that is a few hundred meters in width. "
Known by most forces as discarding sabot rounds, these anti-tank rounds can be more effective than high explosive devices; see kinetic energy penetrators. A kinetic energy penetrator (also known as a KE weapon) is a type of Ammunition which like a Bullet, does not contain Explosives and uses A kinetic energy penetrator (also known as a KE weapon) is a type of Ammunition which like a Bullet, does not contain Explosives and uses An explosive material is a material that either is chemically or otherwise Energetically unstable or produces a sudden expansion of the material usually accompanied A kinetic energy penetrator (also known as a KE weapon) is a type of Ammunition which like a Bullet, does not contain Explosives and uses For reasons why a smaller diameter projectile is desirable, see external ballistics and terminal ballistics. External ballistics is the part of the science of Ballistics that deals with the behaviour of a non-powered projectile in flight Terminal ballistics, a sub-field of Ballistics, is the study of the behavior of a Projectile when it hits its target
The M1A1/M1A2 (US Army Main Battle Tank) and the Challenger 2 (British Army MBT) both employ APFSDS (Armor-Piercing, Fin-Stabilized, Discarding Sabot) rounds as their primary AT capacity, fired from a 120-mm main gun. The M1 Abrams is a main battle tank produced in the United States. FV4034 Challenger 2 is a Main battle tank (MBT currently in service with the armies of the United Kingdom and Oman.
The CBU-107 Passive Attack Weapon is an air-dropped guided bomb containing 3,700 non-explosive steel and tungsten penetrator rods of various sizes. The CBU-107 Passive Attack Weapon is an air-dropped Guided bomb containing 3750 non- Explosive Steel and Tungsten penetrator rods of various It was designed to attack targets where an explosive effect may be undesirable, such as fuel storage tanks in civilian areas. 
Modern anti-tank penetrator rounds are most effective when made with the highest density materials practical, and a common choice depleted uranium, or DU, is in use by some NATO forces. Depleted uranium (DU is Uranium primarily composed of the Isotope Uranium-238 (U-238 Depleted uranium (DU is Uranium primarily composed of the Isotope Uranium-238 (U-238 The controversy involves the residue of the use of DU rounds. Uranium metal is chemically very reactive, and the force of impact causes the round to ignite and burn. The resulting ash is a mixture of various uranium oxides, all of which are either known or suspected toxins. Uranate is the chemical term for Oxide anions of the element Uranium. The depleted uranium in the round is radioactive, though less so than naturally occurring uranium ores. Radioactive decay is the process in which an unstable Atomic nucleus loses energy by emitting ionizing particles and Radiation. 
In the 1960s the U.S. Army began early developmental work on a flechette rifle cartridge. The 1960s decade refers to the years from the beginning of 1960 to the end of 1969 The United States Army is a military organization whose primary mission is to "provide necessary forces and capabilities. It fired steel darts that looked very much like steel nails with fins stamped into the back ("nails with tails"). The flechettes were 3 – 5 cm long, and 1 – 2 mm in diameter, with a 4 – 5 mm fin diameter. It was never fielded. Attempts have been made to develop a selective-fire flechette several times since, with mixed results. A selective fire Firearm can be fired in both semi-automatic and any number of automatic modes by means of a selector There were also experimental flechette rounds for the M203 grenade launcher and the 12-gauge shotgun, but the military eventually decided that standard ammunition worked best in both. A grenade launcher is a Weapon that launches a Grenade with more accuracy higher velocity and to greater distances than a soldier could throw it by hand A shotgun (also known as a scattergun) is a Firearm that is usually designed to be fired from the shoulder which uses the energy of a fixed shell to fire a number
Flechette rounds were developed for small arms for a number of reasons. Small arms is a term used by the Armed forces to refer to Infantry Weapons such as the Firearms that an individual soldier can carry Being very small and light compared to traditional jacketed lead or steel bullets, flechette ammunition weighs less per round, and thus an infantryman can carry more. Ammunition, often referred to as ammo, is a generic term derived from the French language la munition which Second is the issue of recoil — for the same amount of kinetic energy, a lighter bullet (with a higher muzzle velocity) produces less recoil, and thus less shot dispersion in automatic fire. The kinetic energy of an object is the extra Energy which it possesses due to its motion A gun's muzzle velocity is the speed at which the Projectile leaves the muzzle of the gun This article is about backward Momentum produced in firearms when fired The last reason was the emergence of lightweight, flexible body armor for the average infantryman. A very high velocity, small diameter projectile is able to easily penetrate body armor. Also its mass-to-piercing-area ratio was much better than that of regular bullets.
However, the flechette has a number of weaknesses that limit its effectiveness as small arms ammunition. They tended to penetrate heavy armor less deeply than heavier, higher momentum rifle bullets. In Classical mechanics, momentum ( pl momenta SI unit kg · m/s, or equivalently N · s) is the product Their extreme light weight caused them to be deflected extremely easily; a single leaf, or even a raindrop, could destabilize a flechette and cause it to tumble wildly. Because of the hard nature of the flechette, it does not deform on impact, and while it penetrates extremely well, it produces very little tissue damage. The last issue with small arms flechettes is accuracy. To fire the finned flechette out of a smoothbore requires the use of a sabot. A sabot (ˈseɪboʊ "saybow" or /ˈsæboʊ/ "sabbow" is a device used in a Firearm or Cannon to fire a Projectile, such as a Since flechettes do not achieve sufficient stability when spun by rifling alone, the main source of stabilization is the fins. Rifling refers to the Helix -shaped pattern in the barrel of a Firearm, which imparts a spin to a Projectile around its long axis When the sabot separates, it can disturb the effectively unstabilized flechette, and cause deviations in its flight. Experiments to reduce problems associated with sabot separation have been performed, such as placing the sabot on the forward portion of the flechette, rather than the rear, and by fitting a sabot stripper in the muzzle to remove it with less disturbance to flight.
An interesting variation of the flechette that addresses its difficulties is the SCIMTR, developed as part of the CAWS project. The Special Purpose Individual Weapon ( SPIW) was a long-running United States Army program to develop in part a workable Flechette -based "rifle" Also, in 1989 and 1990 the U. S. Army experimented with the Steyr ACR. The Steyr ACR was a prototype Flechette -firing " Assault rifle " built for the US Army 's Advanced Combat Rifle program of 1989 However, the rifle did not achieve the necessary performance to be considered a viable avenue to pursue.