Type 98 20 mm AA Machine Cannon

Type 98 20 mm AA Machine Cannon
Type 98 20 mm anti-aircraft machine cannon
Type 98 Japanese 20 mm anti-aircraft gun - Beijing Museum.jpg
A Type 98 20 mm cannon at the China People's Revolution Military Museum. Note the gun has no magazine fitted.
Type Autocannon
Place of origin  Japan
Service history
In service 1938–1945
Used by  Japan
Wars World War II
Production history
Designed 1933-1938
Number built 2,500
Weight 373 kg (820 lb)
Barrel length 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in) L/70

Shell 20×142 mm
Caliber 20 mm (0.79 in)
Action Gas operated
Carriage Two wheeled split trail.
Elevation -5° to +85°
Traverse 360°
Rate of fire 300 rounds/min (maximum)
120 rounds/min (practical)
Muzzle velocity 830 m/s (2,700 ft/s)
Maximum range 5,500 m (18,000 ft) (horizontal)
3,500 m (11,500 ft) (altitude)
Feed system 20 round box

The Type 98 20 mm AA Machine Cannon was the most common light anti-aircraft gun of the Imperial Japanese Army. About 80% of IJA light AA guns were Type 98. It entered service in 1938 and first saw combat in Nomonhan. It was used until the end of the Second World War.

The gun can be emplaced in about 3 minutes by an experienced crew or fired inaccurately from its wheels.

This weapon and its variants were based on the French design of the 13.2 mm Hotchkiss machine gun of the 1930s, which the Japanese forces had bought and further developed at home.


  • Type 100 Armour piercing tracer. Weight 162 g projectile and 431 g complete round.
  • Type 100 High-explosive tracer (with self destruct). Weight 136 g projectile and 405 g complete round.


  • US Army field manual at hyperwar.org
  • Intelligence briefing at lonesentry.com
  • Japanese Artillery weapons and tactics, Donald B. McLean, ISBN 0-87947-157-3
  • Ogata Katsuichi technological general manager of army "Matter of 13mm "Hotchkiss-type" anti-aircraft gun semi-adopted types enactment" 1934 Japan Center for Asian Histrical Record Ref.C01001317200
  • Army technological headquarters "Examination report of type 98 anti-aircraft gun and dummy cartridge" 1940 Japan Center for Asian Histrical Record Ref.A03032139400

External links

A drawing of a Type 98 20 mm gun from a US Army field manual