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The LPO-50 is a Soviet flamethrower.

LPO-50 Flamethrower description.jpg
Place of origin Soviet Union
Mass15 kg (Empty)
23 kg (Full).

Cartridge3 (Tank Capacity: 3,4L (Total: 10.2L)
Action3 shots / 5-7 sec
Effective firing range40m-50m (Direct Fire)
Maximum firing range70m

Developed in 1953 to replace the ROKS-2/3 flamethrowers used during World War Two,[1] it was kept in the inventory well into the 1980s. This model was designed as a lightweight, manpack flamethrower with three upright cylinders and a bipod-mounted flame gun.[2] It differed from Western flamethrowers in that it used special ignition cartridges to expel the thickened fuel mixture rather than an inert gas. During the 1960s, the weapon was manufactured by the People's Republic of China. It was replaced in Soviet service by the single shot RPO and RPO-A Shmel incendiary rocket launchers in the 1980s.

The LPO did see some service in the Vietnam War. Viet Cong forces were reported to have used the flamethrower at the 1967 Đắk Sơn massacre. At least one was used in an attack on the USMC base at Con Thien (also in 1967)[3], and there were several captured ones on display in Saigon in 1972.[4]

The United States Congress in 2011 cites an Irish Times article, reporting that the Irish Republican Army had an estimated 6 units of this model of flamethrower (prior to 2001).[5]


  1. ^ РУКОВОДСТВО ПО ЛЕГКОМУ ПЕХОТНОМУ ОГНЕМЕТЫ ЛПО-50. Moscow: USSR Ministry of Defense. 1957.
  2. ^ "The LPO-50 Flamethrower". Sword of the Motherland Foundation. Sword of the Motherland Foundation. Retrieved 28 March 2015.
  3. ^ manhhai (2011-12-19), Quang Tri 1967 (15) - Captured Viet Cong Weapons, retrieved 2018-12-19
  4. ^ manhhai (2015-10-03), SAIGON 1972 - Triển lãm vũ khí cộng sản bị tịch thu, retrieved 2018-12-19
  5. ^ US Congress (Jul 28, 2011). Congressional Record. Washington: Government Printing Office. p. 1404. ISBN 9780160924286.