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mechanism for shooting a burning stream of liquid or semiliquid fuel at enemy troops or positions. Primitive types of flamethrowers, consisting of hollow tubes filled with burning coals, sulfur, or other materials, came into use as early as the 5th cent. B.C. Modern flamethrowers were introduced by the Germans in 1915 during World War I. They were not widely used, however, until World War II, when the Americans found them especially useful, either hand-carried or mounted on tanks, in attacking Japanese fortifications in the Pacific Islands. After World War II improved flamethrowers, lighter in weight and with greater range, were developed and used in combat.



a portable pneumatic device for igniting heaps and piles of cuttings to clean up logged areas and for clearing soil cover and surface vegetation when using a backfire to put out forest fires. The device produced in the USSR consists of a backpack tank that holds 8 liters of kerosine, a pneumatic pump, and a hose with a nozzle. The flamethrower works on the blowtorch principle. While the fuel is burning, the temperature of the flame reaches 1000°C. Lumber cuttings burn four times faster when ignited with flamethrowers than with torches made of various materials.



a weapon designed to destroy the enemy with a stream of burning incendiary mixture.

Flamethrowers are portable (backpack), self-propelled, or tank-mounted. The flamethrower consists of containers for the incendiary mixture, a canister of compressed gas (air or nitrogen), a flexible hose, a nozzle equipped with a safety device to prevent accidental firing, and a mechanical ignition device. The current American ABC-M9–7 backpack flamethrower weighs 22.7 kg (outfitted), has a flame-throwing range of 20–55 m, and operates continuously for five to seven seconds. The self-propelled M132 American flamethrower was designed in the 1960’s on the basis of the M113 amphibious armored personnel carrier, on which a small turret with a M10–8 flamethrower device and machine gun are mounted. Containers for the incendiary mixture and compressed air are located in the body of the vehicle. The flame-throwing range is up to 180 m, and the flamethrower can operate continuously for 30–40 seconds.


A device used to project ignited fuel from a nozzle so as to cause casualties to personnel or to destroy material such as weeds or insects.
References in periodicals archive ?
Improvement in flamethrower accuracy made the weapon more useful and less dangerous to personnel providing support.
Because the original flamethrowers did not have fuel tanks, the weapons were designed for transport on mortar carriers.
Rachel Kushner's new novel, The Flamethrowers, is a high-wire performance worthy of Philippe Petit.
They were lighting aerosol cans to create makeshift flamethrowers and demanding he came out the house.
For example, the Navy backed M 132 APCs onto two armored troop carrier (ATC) vessels on the Mekong River and fired the flamethrowers over the sides.
During the last period of such a hard battle, it was the flamethrower, which I saw in the tour, that the United States used frequently.
And the chapter, "Jesus is not a sadist," is fully refuted by the hunchbacked dwarf's transformation of Gehenna from the Essene death chamber in which non-Essenes were exterminated, into the Christian Hell in which the Religious Right's detractors, including moderate Christians, are tortured by flamethrowers for all eternity (Mark 9:47-49).
ADVENTURES FROM THE TECHNOLOGY UNDERGROUND covers the art of making catapults, pulsejets, flamethrowers, Tesla coils and robots, and comes from a professional engineer who interviews his fellow pros in an effort to find out what drives them to create such devices.
I don't want to see turbo-charged tortoises with flamethrowers and mechanical mallets, taped to their shells, battling it out on BBC2 - egged on by teams of excitable beardymen - and I urge TV watchdogs to make sure I never have to.
Early in the development, the German Army recognized that to function effectively the ungainly flamethrowers required carefully trained operators and mechanics.
All of these attitudes are essentially irrational and boil down to this: men who are ready to face anti-personnel minefields, tanks, missiles, bombs, booby-traps, grenade launchers, snipers, flamethrowers, and the biggest bouncers in any of the world's most notorious red-light districts are afraid to share a tent or a shower with a man who doesn't chase after women.
They were lighting aerosol cans to create flamethrowers and demanding he came out the house.