Neopup PAW-20

The Neopup PAW-20 (Personal Assault Weapon, 20 mm) is a 20×42mm semi-automatic grenade launcher designed by Tony Neophytou and as of 2015, is produced and marketed by Denel.[citation needed]

PAW-20 “Neopup”
Neopup PAW-20.png
TypeGrenade launcher
Place of originSouth Africa
Service history
In service2015–present
Production history
DesignerTony Neophytou[1]
ManufacturerGemaco Elbree PTY LTD (former), Denel PMP (current)
Producedin limited production by Denel PMP as of late 2015, under the name Inkunzi
Mass5.9 kg (12.9 lb), empty
Length845 mm (33.3 in) (deployed),
770 mm (30.3 in) (stowed)
Barrel length355 mm (14.0 in)
Width115 mm (4.5 in)
Height185 mm (7.3 in)

Cartridge20mm x 42mm point-detonating rounds developed by PMP Denel[2]
ActionInertial operation with a rotating bolt
Muzzle velocity310 m/s (1000 ft/s)
Effective firing range600 m for point targets. 800 m for suppressive fire (soldiers in a group.) 1000 m for area targets.
Feed system7-round box magazine (discontinued for feeding issue) or 6-round rotary magazine
SightsHolographic sight (but others available)


The PAW-20 is a hand-held, semi-automatic direct fire grenade launcher that fires a 20 mm point detonating round. It holds six rounds in a detachable rotary magazine, with an effective range of 300–400 meters. It was designed mainly as an anti-personnel grenade launcher for use against opposition closely grouped together or behind light cover. However, it is also compatible with less-than-lethal ammunition. The PAW-20 is in direct competition with the more complicated and expensive joint German-U.S. XM25 CDTE and Korean S&T Daewoo K11.[citation needed]

The PAW-20 has attracted some criticism due to the location of the ejection port. On slow motion footage it can be seen that ejection happens after the hydraulic buffer is fully contracted, which brings the ejection port right to shooters face. Due to the unique location of the pistol grip on the side of the weapon, it can be fired from the left shoulder for a right-handed operator by simply placing the butt on the left shoulder, with no hand swapping necessary.

This allows the user the advantage of being able to fire from around or under cover, with little time required to change the grip on the weapon. The right-handed location of the pistol grip also allows the weapon to recoil unimpeded into the shoulder of the operator, allowing for a much more manageable recoil than most weapons of this class. Moreover, the weapon uses the recoil to operate, instead of more traditional gas operated systems and is an interesting example of an inertial operated weapon.[3]

20x42 mm cartridgeEdit

The 20x42 mm cartridge was specifically developed for the PAW-20 by Denel PMP, decreasing the overall weight and size of the weapon, and enabling it to hold more rounds in the magazine, compared to weapons of similar purpose and design, such as the XM25 CDTE, which typically fire 25mm or larger grenades. It has a muzzle velocity of 310 m/s (1,000 ft/s), and a much flatter trajectory than the more common 40mm grenade launcher round. A number of less-than-lethal rounds are also available for the PAW-20.[4]


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-01-02. Retrieved 2007-12-29.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ "Denel". Retrieved 2017-08-15.
  3. ^ McCollum, Ian. "Inkunzi PAW aka Neopup - 20mm Direct-Fire Grenade Launcher". Forgotten Weapons. YouTube. Retrieved 30 December 2018.
  4. ^ "Neopup 20mm". YouTube. 2011-01-02. Archived from the original on 2021-12-19. Retrieved 2017-08-15.
  5. ^ "Peshmerga Archives - The South African Defence Industry Database". Archived from the original on 2019-03-06.
  6. ^ "Notes on the Denel PAW-20 in use by Kurdish Forces". 19 November 2018.

Further readingEdit

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