15 cm schwere Feldhaubitze 18 Field Gun
|Country of Origin||Germany|
|Ammunition Weight||43.50 kg|
|Muzzle Velocity||495 m/s|
Contributor: C. Peter Chenww2dbaseIn the late 1920s, German arms manufacturers Krupp and Rheinmetall competed for the design of a new heavy field howitzer, but the German Army thought the Rheinmetall gun design was better, while the Krupp carriage design was superior. The solution, they decided, was to combine the best elements of each design, thus the 15-centimeter schwere Feldhaubitze 18, or sFH 18, heavy field howitzers, were born. They were introduced to the German Army on 23 May 1935, and by the start of the European War in Sep 1939, 1,353 of them were in service.
Given the newly found mobile warfare doctrines of the German Army, the inability for 15-cm sFH 18 heavy field howitzers to keep up with the tanks became a major weakness. Even though the carriages were designed for horse-towing, they could be adopted for vehicle use, but the lack of suspension meant they could not be towed at high speeds. Nevertheless, they remained the standard German heavy field howitzer for the remainder of the war.
As it was discovered that the Russian Army 122-millimeter A-19 howitzers enjoyed a greater range, therefore giving the Russian Army an advantage when conducting counter-battery firing, work was done to improve the range of the 15-cm sFH 18 howitzers. One of the more interesting methods to improve range was found with the 15-cm R. Gr. 19 FES ammunition, which were rocket-assistance rounds that improved the range to 18,200-meters, which was comparable to the A-19 howitzers.
The 15-cm sFH 18 heavy field howitzers were mounted on Geschützwagen III/IV chassis, creating a new weapon more commonly known as Hummel self-propelled artillery.
Finland purchased 48 of these artillery pieces in 1940 and used them under the designation 150 H/40.
Between 1933 and 1945, a total of 5,403 15-cm sFH 18 heavy field howitzers were built. A majority of them, 2,295, were built in 1944.
After WW2, Czechoslovakia, Portugal, and many South and Central American countries continued to use them.
Several countries continued fielding the sFH 18 after the war in large numbers including Czechoslovakia, Portugal and many South American and Central American countries. Finland bought 48 sFH 18 howitzers from Germany in 1940 and designated them 150 H/40.
Source: Wikipedia. ww2dbase
Last Major Revision: Apr 2008
Did you enjoy this article? Please consider supporting us on Patreon. Even $1 per month will go a long way! Thank you.
Share this article with your friends:
Stay updated with WW2DB:
Visitor Submitted Comments
All visitor submitted comments are opinions of those making the submissions and do not reflect views of WW2DB.
- » WW2DB's 15th Anniversary (29 Dec 2019)
- » Japan and Russia to continue negotiations on the Kuriles territorial dispute (22 Nov 2019)
- » Wreck of Akagi Found (21 Oct 2019)
- » Wreck of Kaga Found (18 Oct 2019)
- » USMC corrected Iwo Jima flag raiser identification (18 Oct 2019)
- » See all news
- » 1,083 biographies
- » 331 events
- » 37,467 timeline entries
- » 1,075 ships
- » 336 aircraft models
- » 189 vehicle models
- » 352 weapon models
- » 107 historical documents
- » 216 facilities
- » 463 book reviews
- » 26,634 photos
- » 318 maps
Thomas Dodd, late 1945