Chinese troops outgrow arms designed 30 years before

Source:Xinhua Published: 2014-2-19 1:03:01

A "significant" change in Chinese soldiers' physiques has meant an increasingly urgent need to replace older, smaller military armaments, said a People's Liberation Army (PLA) Daily report on Tuesday.

A research institute with the PLA's General Armament Department has found that the average Chinese soldier is two centimeters taller and their waistline five centimeters larger than 20 years ago.

The findings come from a data-gathering survey of more than 20,000 in-service ground force soldiers of different ages. Starting in 2009, the survey measured and analyzed military personnel. 

Because of the changes in physique, there is an urgent need for larger models of military equipment.

The report said a soldier of normal stature feels "cramped" in some commonly used tanks, with the designs based on the  physique of 30 years ago.

Firearm stocks that are too short can also affect firing accuracy, the article warned.

"The configuration of armaments and military personnel's physique should be matched, because that is the only way to ensure handy use of the equipment," said Ding Songtao, the director of the survey.

The new database has also collected ergonomic parameters, such as data on hand muscle strength, which can be used to determine the optimum sensitivity of triggers.

The findings have been used to update equipment for artillery, armored forces, engineer corps and chemical defense corps, said Ding.

Posted in: Military

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