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M134 / GAU-17/A Minigun

The Minigun is a 6-barrel electrically-operated gatling gun that is mounted on vehicles, helicopters and boats. The Army designation for the 7.62x51mm minigun is the M134 while the Air Force and Navy designate the system as the GAU-2/A (fixed mount) and the GAU-17/A (flexible mount).

Bases around a six bolt rotating unit, the minigun can fire at a very high rate of up to 6000 rounds per minute.

US Special Operations Forces use the minigun in a variety of applications. The 160th SOAR and AFSOC helicopter units use the minigun mounted in the doors/windows on their helicopters for self-defence and landing zone suppression.

SOAR MH-60 DAP and AH-6 gunships mount fixed M134s for attacking surface targets. SWWCs mount GAU-17/A miniguns on their SOC-R boats while Army Special Forces mount miniguns atop HMMWVs and GMVs.


Minigun Specifications

weight: 35.05 lbs (empty)
length: 31.5 inches
barrel length: 21.85 inches
rate of fire : 4000-6000 rpm
muzzle velocity : 2,850 feet per second
effective range : 1000m
caliber : 7.62mmx51mm
magazine : 4000-round disintegrating belt or linkless feed

Minigin - Images and Further Info

Special Forces - Minigun
A Special Forces soldier trains on the MK-44 Minigun mounted on a vehicle. The MK-44 is a variant of the GAU-17 minigun that was developed for mounting on British Royal Navy warships to deal with small surface threats, but can also be mounted on vehicles, as shown here.
U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd (DSW/SW) Class Christopher Perez

SWCC - Minigun
A Special Warfare Combat-craft Crewman (SWCC) mans a GAU-17/A Minigun mounted on a Special Operations Craft-Riverine (SOC-R). The Minigun's high rate of fire makes it ideal for hosing down a tree line during a hot extraction.
U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jayme Pastoric (Released)

GAU-17/A Minigun
A US Marine fires a GAU-17/A Minigun mounted on a USMC UH-1N Huey helicopter.

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