March 24, 2003: H-60 Completed .50 Calibre Machine Gun Mount Capability Published March 24, 2021 418th Flight Test Squadron NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, NV -- In his weekly “What Is Going On in the Test Wing,” or “WIGO,” 412 TW/CC Col Steve Cameron remarked: “Can’t really talk about some of the important test acceleration work we’ve been doing over the past few days in support of the war effort, but I can tell you that within hours of our completing testing, several capabilities were employed in theater.” In his WIGO, the colonel also noted that the Center’s H-60 detachment (418 FLTS) at Nellis AFB had recently completed tests of a .50 calibre machine gun mount capability. The system, he stated, was “being rapidly fielded to support current operations, with H-60 CTF [Combined Test Force] operators deploying to help train crews in the field. Another test effort with immediate impact to the warfighter. The M2A1 includes new modern features and design improvements that make it easier and safer to use including a quick change barrel, fixed headspace and timing and a new flash hider that reduces the weapon's signature by 95 percent at night. "The M2A1 builds upon the legend of a phenomenal weapon system," said Lt. Col. Thomas Ryan, Product Manager Crew Served Weapons. "Soldiers already rank the M2 among the most effective weapon systems in their arsenal. The upgrades we've incorporated will keep this weapon relevant well into the future. We're looking forward to working with our sister services to put this capability in the hands of even more warfighters across the Department of Defense." The original M2 "Ma Deuce" .50 Caliber Machine Gun is a belt-fed, heavy machine gun that mounts on most aircraft and vehicles and can be fired from a tripod. The system is highly effective against light armored vehicles, low- and slow-flying aircraft, boats and enemy personnel.