Above: An M-110A2 Howitzer (and its predecessor, the M-110A1)
had nuclear capability in the 3AD in the late 1970's and the
1980's when nuclear shells were under direct 3AD control (i.e.,
no longer limited to special V Corps artillery units). The M-33
shell was standard fission and had four different yields, ranging
from less than 1 kiloton to less than 20 kilotons. Detonation
was by mechanical time-delay airburst.
The W-79 shell was intended to replace the M-33 in the early
1980's, but the M-33 was still kept in service. The characteristics
of the two shells complimented each other. Fielded in 1981, the
M-79 was dual capable in Mode 0 as either a pure fission weapon
(plutonium linear implosion) or in enhanced radiation mode (ER
or "neutron bomb"). In Mode 1, it was standard fission
only. Its yield range was variable: 100 tons to 1.1 kiloton in
Mode 0 and 0.8 kiloton in Mode 1. Detonation was by proximity
airburst or contact.
Only limited and specially trained small units in Division
Artillery would have access to these shells.