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The Dominator Integrated Infantry Combat System with man-packable VSAT terminal

March 26, 2007 Elbit Systems heads up the Isreal Ministry of Defense Integrated Infantry Combat System (IICS) Project which aims to equip soldiers with miniaturised high-tech wearable tools for advanced situational awareness, quicker response and ultimately, increased lethality. The plan is to allow infantry soldiers to be networked into integrated information systems so they can send and receive information in real time, view up-to-the-minute Common Operational Picture (situational awareness of enemy and own forces) and live video from either external or on body sensors and transmit images and information back to command. The company’s Dominator Integrated Infantry Combat System was shown off for the first time last week and amongst a range of extraordinary capabilities, the integrated Globalight man-packable VSAT terminal stands out - it offers broadband communications, two way simultaneous voice, internet, VC. Phone, fax and email communications ANYWHERE.  Read More

JDAM Scores Direct Hit in Extended Range Tests

March 20, 2007 Two Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) weapons, each equipped with an Australian-designed and -built modular wing kit, have been successfully released from a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) F/A-18 Hornet during recent flight tests. Flying at 20,000 feet over the Woomera Prohibited Area in South Australia, a RAAF F/A-18 released the 500-pound Mk-82 JDAM Extended Range (ER) weapons and scored a direct hit on their respective targets. The ER wing kit provides more than three times the range of a baseline JDAM and is designed to be installed in the field to existing JDAM weapons. The affordable ER wing kit enhances the already highly capable JDAM into one of the most mission flexible, low-cost weapons available in the world today.  Read More

Macroswiss Claymore Camera makes a dumb mine much smarter

March 1, 2007 UPDATED IMAGES Anti Personnel (land)mines cannot distinguish between the footfall of a child and a soldier. The banning of landmines by the 1997 Mine Ban Treaty has left civilised military forces with a problem – landmines have traditionally been used to cover dead ground in the 20 to 200 metre range. The weapon of choice to replace the landmine has subsequently become the Claymore. Named after the 700 year-old two-handed Scottish sword, the Claymore is based on the Misznay-Schardin effect in that its blast is primarily in a single direction. The U.S. Army developed the design half a century ago during the Korean War into an anti-personnel weapon that would fire 700 ball bearings propelled by 650 grams of plastic explosive with lethal effect to 100 meters across a 60° arc in front of the 8 x 3 x 1.5 inch box. Claymores are not buried like mines – they are anchored above ground pointed towards the likely location of the enemy, and are now known the world over for the words "Front Toward Enemy" embossed on their olive plastic casing. For the first 50 years of their existence, Claymores have been dumb – but an ingenious telecommunications system that can be fitted to any Claymore looks set to give new life to the fearsome weapon. The newly available Macroswiss Claymore Camera consists of a video camera attached to the Claymore, which relays information to a remote receiver through a cable system so an operator can monitor events in front of the mine, and detonate it when the time comes. If the user wants to keep a record, the video feedback can be recorded with the GPS position and its even possible to ensure no-one can sneak past the mine by adding a motion detection system that will raise an alarm if there is any movement in the camera’s field of view.  Read More

The Advanced Combat Camera System – 21st century periscope

March 3, 2007 UPDATED IMAGE LIBRARY Innovative military engineering company Macroswiss has often made these pages, firstly for it Guncam which is a weapon-mounted camera that records video in firefights, grants accountability, helps training and avoids risky body exposure of the user. Then the company’s Spybot 4WD with flapper wheels made a huge impression at the European Land Robot Trials (ELROB) last July. Now the company has released the Advanced Combat Camera System (ACCS) which is an evolution of the highly successful Giraffe pole camera system. ACCS incorporates colour zoom, low light, and thermal sensors and can be deployed in a multitude of roles in support of combat units at fire team level, also providing an onboard Digital Video Recorder for intelligence and evidential applications. This “Camera On A Stick” (COAST) solution is basically a 21st century version of the World War 1 trench periscope, but with far wider roles, and significantly greater capability.  Read More

Emergency Escape Windows for up-armored vehicles

February 22, 2007 The U.S. military is exploring ways to help troops in combat rapidly escape from up-armored vehicles in the event of an emergency, such as a rollover, fire or accident. The VEE Window enables crews of HMMWVs and other tactical vehicles to remove windows in less than five seconds to provide another way to rapidly exit the vehicle in the event of an emergency situation. BAE Systems is offering its Vehicle Emergency Escape (VEE) Window to help increase the survivability of soldiers and Marines in Iraq and Afghanistan. BAE Systems’ goal is to work with the Army to have the first unit equipped with this device by summer 2007.  Read More

Artillery Precision Guidance Kit in testing

February 8, 2007 The advent of precision guided munitions has completely changed the battlefield inside a few decades. Once bombs were dropped in vast numbers, as each one had a small probability of hitting its target. Then computers and advanced guidance entered the fray, and bombs became deadly accurate. Now the artillery section is getting in on the act. We reported last July that BAE had received a contract to participate in a competitive technical development program of a Precision Guidance Kit for use with Army cannon artillery ammunition which makes conventional cannon projectiles at least three times more accurate. Now the system is in testing and last month 21 155 mm projectiles were successfully fired equipped with the Precision Guidance Kit (PGK) test modules.  Read More

The mine-resistant, ambush-protected 6x6 SUV

February 8, 2007 For when the alternatives to not getting there just don’t bear thinking about, (or if your neighbour has a Hummer), perhaps give some thought to BAE Systems’ new 6x6 RG33. It’s designed with all the latest next-generation technology to help keep soldiers safe from Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), small arms, heavy machine gun fire and mines. The highly survivable RG33 incorporates a monocoque V-shaped hull design leveraging knowledge gained in recent and ongoing conflicts, and offers significant interior volume for crew and mission equipment. The base model exceeds the survivability of all currently-fielded mine protected vehicles and the optional extras include tailorable armor packages, blast-resistant seating, transparent armor and unique reconfigurable interior stations. The power train platforms is designed to handle upgrades and enhancements.  Read More

Silly String used to detect tripwires for explosive devices in Iraq

January 15, 2007 The Improvised Explosive Device (IED) is relatively new to the theatre of war as a mainstream weapon. It was first used en masse by Belarusian guerillas against German supply trains during World War II. Since then, explosive devices have been used to great effect in a number of asymmetrical conflicts. The IED has achieved main weapon status in the current Iraq War, and as usual, some ingenious improvisations have evolved to overcome them. As ludicrous as it may for a soldier in body armour to be carrying a weapon such as the one pictured, that’s just what is happening in beautiful downtown Baghdad at present. The U.S. Army has found that KIDdesigns’ Silly String, which shoots out a very lightweight foam string, is very effective at detecting tripwires without detonating the IED at the end of the wire - the foam is light enough to drape across the wires and thus identify them.  Read More

The One-Shot Sniping System

January 7, 2007 The snipe is a wading bird renowned for being the hardest of all birds to hunt due to being difficult to locate, impossible to approach without flushing, or to hit once in the air due to its erratic flight. In the days of market hunting, those who brought snipes to market were regarded as the best of the best and earned the term snipers. The verb snipe originated in the 1770s among soldiers in British India applying similar skills in wartime with a human quarry. A sniper occasionally takes the one, well-aimed shot that, if done properly, will save lives and turn the course of battle. One of the many skills of a modern days sniper is mathematics – to measure or estimate the range, cross winds, and calculate the allowances needed for one shot to hit its target after travelling up to 2000 yards (the longest confirmed sniper kill of the Gulf War was made by a Barrett Model 82A1 sniper rifle at a range of 1,800 meters).  Read More

England’s Taranis to be one of the largest UAVs ever

January 6, 2007 Yet another potent UAV is in the development phase, this one for the UK Ministry of Defence to be constructed by a team headed by BAE Systems, together with Rolls-Royce, Smiths Aerospace and QinetiQ, plus MoD military staff and scientists. The four year project to develop a world-class UAV (Unmanned Air Vehicle) Technology Demonstrator Programme called Taranis. Ground testing of the UKP124 million Taranis project is expected to take place in early 2009 with the first flight trials taking place in 2010. Named after the Celtic God of Thunder, Taranis will be an unmanned fast jet demonstrator the size of a Hawk trainer - making it one of the world's largest UAVs - that will be stealthy, fast and be able to test deploy a range of munitions over a number of targets and be able to defend itself against manned and other unmanned enemy aircraft.  Read More

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