The M240, which has been formally referred to as the United States Machine Gun, 7.62mm, M240, is within a series of medium machine guns, belt-fed, firing the 7.62 Ãƒâ€” 51 mm NATO cartridge (w/ M13 Link). The M240 is based on the Browning Automatic Rifle and the FN MAG machine gun.
The M240 has been utilized by the US armed forces frequently since the late 1970s. The machine gun is used extensively by ground vehicles, aircraft, the infantry, and watercraft. The M240 is not the lightest medium machine gun in service however the weapon is highly regarded for its standardization among NATO members and reliability, is frequently quoted as a major advantage.
Each variant of the M240 series utilize disintegrating belts, and are able to fire most types of 7.62 mm NATO ammunition. Each shares the same basic internal, interchangeable parts, for the most part, with other similar members of the FN MAG family. There are key differences in some features and weight among some versions for which this does not apply. The machine gun is manufactured produced by the American division of FN Herstal. FN Herstal is a Belgian company with historically deep ties to U.S. arms procurement.
The M240B and M240G (see Variants section) are generally fired from a mount such as a bipod, the M122A1 tripod, or other types of mounts.