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An ammunition technician (AT) is a British Army soldier, formerly of the Royal Army Ordnance Corps but since 1993 of the Royal Logistic Corps, trained to inspect, repair, test, store, and modify all ammunition, guided missiles, and explosives used by the British Army. These technicians are also trained to use demolition to safely dispose of individual items of ammunition and explosives (EODs) or to conduct logistics disposal of bulk stocks of multi items. After gaining sufficient experience, those who show the appropriate qualities are given extra training to render safe improvised explosive devices (IEDs) by a process called improvised explosive device disposal. Experienced ATs may be called to give evidence as expert witnesses in criminal or coroner's courts in relation to ammunition or explosives or to EOD and IEDD duties.

History

Within the Royal Army Ordnance Corps, the receipt into service, storage, examination and issue of ammunition was possibly the oldest and most important function of the Corps. War could not be waged without ammunition, and to be waged successfully the ammunition had to be in every respect serviceable and dependable. The trade were previously called Ammunition Examiners (AE) and it was in the safeguarding of ammunition stockpiles during the wars that the Ammunition Examiner proved his worth. Promotion however was limited up to Warrant Officer Class 2 and at this stage the AE had to re-muster in the trade of RAOC Clerk in order to obtain higher rank. In 1948, the increased responsibility of the ammunition organization in Ordnance Services and in order to use the experience of these highly skilled tradesmen both as Warrant Officers and as Officers, the RAOC decided that promotion to WO1 would be introduced. RAOC Instruction No 466 introduced a new type of Quartermaster commission into the Royal Army Ordnance Corps to permit the Warrant Officer Ammunition Examiner being commissioned within the sphere of his normal employment on ammunition duties. These commissioned WOs would be called Assistant Inspecting Ordnance Officers (AIOOs).

Training

Training was initially undertaken at Bramley in Hampshire at the School of Ammunition. However the school moved to Kineton in 1974. To qualify to attend the Ammunition Technician Class 2 course,[1] a soldier must first pass a pre-select course, during which time they will be assessed for suitability for role. The pre-selection includes psychometric testing, leadership skills, problem solving, resource planning and numeracy tests.

The basic AT course is 9 months in duration, the first part of which is spent at The Royal Military College of Science. The instruction within the Defence College of Management and Technology forms the first phase of the 9-month course. The aim of the first part is to provide the scientific and technical basis for further training in ammunition and explosives. The syllabus is an integrated study of mathematics, ballistics, explosives and general chemistry, physics, metallurgy, electronics and the design of armoured vehicles, artillery and infantry weapons. Time is also spent on nuclear, biological and chemical weapons design and the related protection systems. The remainder of the course covers conventional land munitions, explosive demolitions, conventional munitions disposal, guided weapons and explosive theory and safety. The majority of the course takes place at the Defence EOD Munitions Search Training Regiment (DEMS Trg Regt). Training previously took place at the Defence EOD Munitions Search School Kineton, DEMSS Kineton, and before that the Army School of Ammunition.

After 3 years gaining experience in trade, these technicians will be selected to return to Kineton to attend their Class 2 to Class 1 Upgrading Course, a 3-month course to broaden their technical knowledge and ability in munitions incident investigations, large scale demolitions and the disposal of chemical and biological munitions.

The Royal Logistic Corps Ammunition Technicians trained at Kineton are regarded throughout the world as the subject matter experts in the management of munitions and in Improvised Explosive Device (IED) disposal as a result of their combined experience in Palestine, Cyprus, Hong Kong, Northern Ireland, Iraq, Afghanistan, Aden, Malaya and other conflicts.

Commissioned officers are known as Ammunition Technical Officers and for the Sandhurst entrant, they complete a 17-month technical course in the rank of Captain. ATs that become commissioned later in their service are also referred to as ATOs and will be granted the ato qualification by a testing board based on their experience, knowledge and competence.

Scope of Work

ATs are e

Within the Royal Army Ordnance Corps, the receipt into service, storage, examination and issue of ammunition was possibly the oldest and most important function of the Corps. War could not be waged without ammunition, and to be waged successfully the ammunition had to be in every respect serviceable and dependable. The trade were previously called Ammunition Examiners (AE) and it was in the safeguarding of ammunition stockpiles during the wars that the Ammunition Examiner proved his worth. Promotion however was limited up to Warrant Officer Class 2 and at this stage the AE had to re-muster in the trade of RAOC Clerk in order to obtain higher rank. In 1948, the increased responsibility of the ammunition organization in Ordnance Services and in order to use the experience of these highly skilled tradesmen both as Warrant Officers and as Officers, the RAOC decided that promotion to WO1 would be introduced. RAOC Instruction No 466 introduced a new type of Quartermaster commission into the Royal Army Ordnance Corps to permit the Warrant Officer Ammunition Examiner being commissioned within the sphere of his normal employment on ammunition duties. These commissioned WOs would be called Assistant Inspecting Ordnance Officers (AIOOs).

Training

Training was initially undertaken at Bramley in Hampshire at the School of Ammunition. However the school moved to Kineton in 1974. To qualify to attend the Ammunition Technician Class 2 course,[1] a soldier must first pass a pre-select course, during which time they will be assessed for suitability for role. The pre-selection includes psychometric testing, leadership skills, problem solving, resource planning and numeracy tests.

The basic AT course is 9 months in duration, the first part of which is spent at The Royal Military College of Science. The instruction within the Defence College of Management and Technology forms the first phase of the 9-month course. The aim of the first part is to provide the scientific and technical basis for further training in ammunition and explosives. The syllabus is an integrated study of mathematics, ballistics, explosives and general chemistry, physics, metallurgy, electronics and the design of armoured vehicles, artillery and infantry weapons. Time is also spent on nuclear, biological and chemical weapons design and the related protection systems. The remainder of the course covers conventional land munitions, explosive demo

Training was initially undertaken at Bramley in Hampshire at the School of Ammunition. However the school moved to Kineton in 1974. To qualify to attend the Ammunition Technician Class 2 course,[1] a soldier must first pass a pre-select course, during which time they will be assessed for suitability for role. The pre-selection includes psychometric testing, leadership skills, problem solving, resource planning and numeracy tests.

The basic AT course is 9 months in duration, the first part of which is spent at The Royal Military College of Science. The instruction within the Defence College of Management and Technology forms the first phase of the 9-month course. Th

The basic AT course is 9 months in duration, the first part of which is spent at The Royal Military College of Science. The instruction within the Defence College of Management and Technology forms the first phase of the 9-month course. The aim of the first part is to provide the scientific and technical basis for further training in ammunition and explosives. The syllabus is an integrated study of mathematics, ballistics, explosives and general chemistry, physics, metallurgy, electronics and the design of armoured vehicles, artillery and infantry weapons. Time is also spent on nuclear, biological and chemical weapons design and the related protection systems. The remainder of the course covers conventional land munitions, explosive demolitions, conventional munitions disposal, guided weapons and explosive theory and safety. The majority of the course takes place at the Defence EOD Munitions Search Training Regiment (DEMS Trg Regt). Training previously took place at the Defence EOD Munitions Search School Kineton, DEMSS Kineton, and before that the Army School of Ammunition.

After 3 years gaining experience in trade, these technicians will be selected to return to Kineton to attend their Class 2 to Class 1 Upgrading Course, a 3-month course to broaden their technical knowledge and ability in munitions incident investigations, large scale demolitions and the disposal of chemical and biological munitions.

The Royal Logistic Corps Ammunition Technicians trained at Kineton are regarded throughout the world as the subject matter experts in the management of munitions and in Improvised Explosive Device (IED) disposal as a result of their combined experience in Palestine, Cyprus, Hong Kong, Northern Ireland, Iraq, Afghanistan, Aden, Malaya and other conflicts.

Commissioned officers are known as Ammunition Technical Officers and for the Sandhurst entrant, they complete a 17-month technical course in the rank of Captain. ATs that become commissioned later in their service are also referred to as ATOs and will be granted the ato qualification by a testing board based on their experience, knowledge and competence.

ATs are employed within the Royal Logistic Corps of the British Army and are the technical experts in storing and processing ammunition in base depots or field storage sites at home or on operations where safety in storage is paramount to overall force protection. Being an Ammunition Technician calls for intelligence, clear thinking and analytical skills, a calm outlook coupled with excellent attention to detail, discipline and courage. ATs develop specialist skills to look after the MoDs global stockpiles of ammunition by carrying out surveillance tasks, testing, inspecting, maintaining and disposing of all sorts of ammunition, from bullet clips, anti-aircraft guided weapon systems, mines, mortars, tank rounds and aircraft bombs. The Ammunition Technician profession is not exclusive to the UK MoD but similar technical personnel also exist in the Canadian, Australian RAAOC,[2] and New Zealand RNZALR. Ammunition Technicians trained at the Defence EOD Munitions Search School, Kineton also work on loan service engagements in a number of African, Far Eastern and Middle Eastern armed forces.

In the United Kingdom, bomb disposal is carried out in all three services (Royal Navy, Royal Air Force, and the Royal Logistic Corps and In the United Kingdom, bomb disposal is carried out in all three services (Royal Navy, Royal Air Force, and the Royal Logistic Corps and Royal Engineers of the British Army). The majority of counter terrorist bomb disposal and conventional munitions disposal activity is carried out by the Ammunition Technicians of the Royal Logistic Corps, the Royal Navy Clearance Divers deal with items below the high water mark and underwater tasks, the Royal Air Force deal with conventional and IED tasks on all RAF stations in the UK, as well as aircraft crash sites, weapons and other explosives; including ejection seats and stores release systems. The Royal Engineers deal with minefields, conventional, biological and chemical munitions and German WWII aircraft bombs that occasionally turn up.

The trade of Ammunition Technician is one of the most highly decorated professions in the British Army. The trade has been awarded 231 British gallantry awards as follows:

In addition, Ammunition Technicians and Ammunition Technical Officers have also received almost 200 Mention

In addition, Ammunition Technicians and Ammunition Technical Officers have also received almost 200 Mention in Dispatches, King's or Queen's Commendations for Bravery.

A further 100 awards of the MBE and BEM have been made to Ammunition Technicians for distinguished service within their trade.

These decorations have been awarded since 1940 and in places such as Aden, Afghanistan, Albania, B

A further 100 awards of the MBE and BEM have been made to Ammunition Technicians for distinguished service within their trade.

These decorations have been awarded since 1940 and in places such as Aden, Afghanistan, Albania, Burma, Cyprus, Egypt, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Great Britain, Greece, Hong Kong, Iraq, Italy, Kuwait, Malaya, Malta, Northern Ireland, Pacific, Sicily and Yugoslavia.

George Cross

George Medal