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16 Jun 16. Eurosatory: Sig Sauer aims for German rifles. The German Bundeswehr and KSK special forces unit are interested in getting new rifles and Sig Sauer is going to put forward a solution based on its new MCX rifle. A spokesperson from Sig Sauer told Shephard that the MCX is a new product that can meet the requirements of the military and that the company is preparing to expand its facilities in Germany to enable domestic production of the rifle. The company employs many ex-SF personnel and the spokesperson said that MCX was developed with the user in mind. He said that the idea is to have a permanently-supressed rifle barrel that will replace the MP5 9mm. He added that SF units want a round that packs more of a punch, so whilst 7.62mm rounds are ideal they are too heavy. Therefore Sig Sauer has developed their own ammunition based on the 300 Whisper hunting ammunition. The company has militarised it by combining the projectile diameter of the 7.62mm round with the casing of the 5.56mm round and called it 300BLK. In this way Sig Sauer believes they are able to provide a new rifle and have the guaranteed provision of specialist ammunition on offer as well. As well as the ammunition, the spokesperson said they can offer a complete system with suppression and barrels that are modular and offer flexibility for individual SF user preferences. If a user wants to fire 5.56mm rounds then this is possible by changing the barrel but they do not have to change the bolt or the magazine, unlike other rifles, therefore making it easier to make the change. The spokesperson said that in a 4-8 man SF unit everyone has their preferred weapon and rig. Sig Sauer is able to offer all the individual components for the MCX such as a skeleton buttstock popular in the UK or an adjustable one popular in Europe. MCX has options up to a 16 inch barrel but it can be used with one as short as 6.75 inches although it would need a suppressor because it is so powerful so would come to 13in overall. But MCX designed to replace the capability of the sub-machine gun’s power and range. With MCX the spokesperson said a user can achieve a range of over 200m with a suppressor, unlike earlier rifles that can only get less than 150m. This requirement was identified in Afghanistan where operators found that animal noises would provide warning of an approaching enemy but the soldiers were then not able to return fire at range silently. Although the details of the German tender are not open yet, the company wants to be competitive and said they can offer the rifle, the ammunition as well as optics and training as well if needed. MCX is already used by a couple of western SF units and by the UK Metropolitan Police force specialist SO19 counter-terrorist unit, which has used the rifle since the end of 2015. (Source: Shephard)
18 Jun 16. Designing a Laser to Defeat Drone Swarms. Lockheed Martin engineers are collaborating with customers and academia to research, develop and implement the technology that will detect and defeat swarms.
“We are currently developing a 60-kilowatt system that combines multiple fiber lasers to generate the high power weapon beam,” said Rob Afzal, senior fellow with Lockheed Martin’s Laser and Sensor systems division.
Because the system relies on many modular fiber lasers, it is easily scalable to meet different levels of power. With this parallel approach, there is no single point of failure that will compromise the laser’s power and functionality – as long as power exists. The laser weapon system can fire over and over, essentially creating an unlimited magazine of ‘bullets.’
Contrary to popular belief, the laser is actually invisible to the naked eye. Once it starts up, it is steadily sent through a beam control system that ensures it can accurately aim, target and destroy the threa