The US Army has begun sending the new 5.56mm cartridge M855A1 enhanced performance round (EPR) to soldiers in Afghanistan.
The new M855A1 round, also known as "green ammo" will replace the army's M855 5.56mm cartridge.
Specifically designed for use in the M-4 weapon system, the M855A1 can also be used in the M-16 and M-249 families of weapons.
Green ammo features improved hard-target capability, improved accuracy, reduced muzzle flash and a higher velocity.
The M855A1 outperformed the current 7.62mm ball ammunition during a series of tests conducted against certain types of targets.
The army plans to procure in excess of 200 million rounds over the next 12-15 months and soldiers in Afghanistan will begin using the rounds this year.
The cartridges were developed by the Army Research Laboratory, Armament Research Development and Engineering Center, Program Executive Office for Ammunition and the Joint Munitions Command.