Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
PDWs were developed from the late 1980s on as defensive weapons for troops whose primary activities does not include use of small arms - vehicle and tank crew members, artillery crews etc. As standard pistols and SMGs chambered for pistol rounds proved ineffective against enemy soldiers wearing armour (bulletproof vests), compact and light weapons with body armour penetration capability were wanted.
Typical PDW use small calibre, high velocity bullets for body armour-piercing capability up to approx. Level IIIa. These light bullets are object of serious criticism concerning their wounding potential, though.
Examples for modern PDWs include
- the discontinued prototype G11-PDW by Heckler und Koch
- the HK MP5K-PDW by Heckler und Koch
- the HK MP7 by Heckler und Koch
- the FN P90 by Fabrique Nationale
- the PDW 17 Libra
- Saab Bofors Dynamics CBJ-MS
The M1 Carbine of the Second World War can be considered as the primary forerunner of modern PDW.
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