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19 Jan 17. China enhances PGZ-07 capability. The PGZ-07 twin 35 mm self-propelled anti-aircraft gun (SPAAG) system currently in service with China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has been upgraded with the addition of a new sensor pod. The existing sensor pod is positioned above the tracking radar, which is mounted on the forward part of the turret, and includes a laser rangefinder to ensure that the target is within the effective range of the 35mm cannon. The additional sensor pod is mounted to the right of the tracking radar. The sensor pods contain a number of systems, including a charge-couple device (CCD) camera and a thermal imager, that enable the 35mm cannon to be used in almost all weather conditions. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
19 Jan 17. The US Army wants a missile capable of releasing a cluster of drones during flight in order to hit multiple targets. After being released from the missile, the payload of “quad-copters” would decelerate, identify targets, land on the targets and detonate attached munitions, which the solicitation calls “explosively formed penetrators (EFP).”
“The ultimate goal is to produce a missile deployable, long range UAS swarm that can deliver small EFPs to a variety of targets. This will serve as a smart augmentation to the standard missile warhead,” according to the Department of Defense request.
Possible targets named in the solicitation are tanks and large caliber gun barrels, vehicle roofs, fuel storage barrels, and ammunition storage sites. While the technology is meant for military use, “other payloads could be used for remote sensing into dangerous/hazardous areas,” the solicitation stated. Earlier this month, the Pentagon in a test launched a swarm of 103 Perdix microdrones from three separate F/A-18 Super Hornets. The swarm demonstrated advanced behavior such as “collective decision-making, adaptive formation flying, and self-healing,” according to a Defense Department statement. Applications for the Army’s air platform request are due Feb. 8. (Source: Defense News)
19 Jan 17. BREAKING: The Army’s New Handgun Is… A SIG!!! The search for the Army’s new Modular Handgun System has ended. And the winner is, Sig Sauer!!! Put another way, the Beretta M9 is dead. “I am tremendously proud of the Modular Handgun System team,” said Army acquisition executive Steffanie Easter in the release obtained by Military.com. “By maximizing full and open competition across our industry partners, we have optimized private sector advancements in handguns, ammunition and magazines and the end result will ensure a decidedly superior weapon system for our warfighters.”
The search for the new MHS began in 2011. The goal was to find a replacement for the Beretta M9 in a timely fashion. The search was anything but timely. Delay after delay, deadline missed after deadline missed, it seemed as if the Army would never make up its mind. But it finally did. And it’s a Sig! Presumably a P320-based pistol, which beat out Smith & Wesson, Beretta and Glock for the massive contract worth upwards of $580m. No word yet on caliber. “As MHS moves forward into operational testing, the due diligence taken by all of the stakeholders will ensure a program that remains on-budget and on-schedule,” Easter said. After operational testing, the new pistol should be fielded this year, said the release. (Source: GunsAmerica)
19 Jan 17. ECA Group’s UMIS MCM system makes obsolete conventional mine hunters. UMIS is ECA Group brand new Mine Counter Measure (MCM) unmanned system able to carry out any MCM missions, using a collaborative system of surface and underwater robots, thanks to an advanced Command & Control System. Delivering the UMIS system to the first customers in 2016, ECA Group’s solution made conventional mine hunters obsolete. It has proven to be faster in fulf