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Canada The Military Technology

Canada's Next-Generation Military Smart Gun Unveiled 75

Zothecula writes Looking every bit like a weapon from a science fiction movie, the latest integrated assault rifle prototype being developed for the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) is packed with some very smart weapons technology. Along with the ability to fire new lightweight telescoped ammunition, and a secondary effects module that adds either a three-round 40 mm grenade launcher or a 12-gauge shotgun, there is also a NATO-standard power and data bus to allow the attachment of smart accessories, such as electro-optical sights and position sensors that connect to command and control networks.
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Canada's Next-Generation Military Smart Gun Unveiled

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  • Smart gun but , (Score:3, Insightful)

    by invictusvoyd ( 3546069 ) on Monday February 16, 2015 @04:18PM (#49068791)
    the real problem appears to be dumb politicians / world leaders . I wonder if anyone is workin on them .
    • by antdude ( 79039 )

      Ask the voters? :P

  • Xenomorphs (Score:4, Funny)

    by DavenH ( 1065780 ) on Monday February 16, 2015 @04:22PM (#49068841)
    Those critters from LV-426 better look out.
    • by pr0t0 ( 216378 )

      I'd like to introduce you to a personal friend of mine. It's the M-41A pulse rifle, with over and under pump action grenade launcher.

      • [pulling out his pump-action shotgun]
        Hicks: I like to keep this handy... for close encounters.
        Frost: I heard *that.*
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I bet this was not designed by a soldier. Try dragging all that high-tech through the mud and sand then see if it still works. Extra brownie points if the battery powering it all doesn't die before the owner of the weapon. Hint: The reason why the AK-47 is so successful is because it's SIMPLE and it can easily be repaired in the field.

    Anybody remember the scene in 'Starship Troopers' where the weapon malfunctions in training?

    • Prototypes were tested in Afghanistan. They've done a lot of work to make it lighter than existing weaponry. Also, the article is wrong because it come with the 5.56mm rifle, 18mm shotgun, and 40mm grenade launcher at the same time, as you can see from the video. And can your AK-47 share targeting info with other shooters?
      • They've done a lot of work to make it lighter than existing weaponry.

        No. TFA says it is lighter than a C7 + M203. So they made it lighter than two existing weapons strapped together. A C7 is basically a Canadian M16. I know from personal experience that an M16 + M203 is NOT a "light" combination, especially when you are also lugging 10kg of two different types of ammunition.

        • Yeah, they really need to look into using smaller grenades. Those 40mm ones are nice but quite heavy, which is fine for vehicle mounted, crew served weapons and some specialists but not for your standard rifle. The 40mm x 46mm M381 has a 130m casualty radius with a weight of 230g. You'd need to do some testing, but I'm betting that a half size version 20mm x 23mm would be sufficient for most tasks. The original version has a volume of 57,776mm3 while the smaller one would have a volume of 7,222mm3 so yo
          • I'm somewhat skeptical no one has tried this alternative. Hell they could sell it to police departments!

            There must be some technical issue blocking it, e.g., the explosive power doesn't quite scale.

            • You'd be surprised how resistant the military is to any sort of change. Both as a cultural issue (trying to preserve previous things that work) and as a logistics issue (five zillion different kinds of ammo are hard to keep re-supplied). Since it's not some fancy high technology thing you'd have a hard time getting much research money to study the problem and test out various smaller sizes to see what offered the best trade offs. Personally I think you could run up a variety of different smaller calibers
      • Is sharing targetting info useful enough to justify having to recharge your gun every X hours, and risk suffering a software crash every now and then? And what if your adversary intercepts all that valuable targetting info you are broadcasting, and now know exactly where all your guys are and where they are aiming?

        • It's not like this is powering a tv. And obviously data will be encrypted, same as tank computers share targeting and other info with each other on the field right now.
        • Encrypting the data transmitted is nearly trivial. There are numerous encryption algorithms out there that can sufficiently prevent eavesdropping of the data. Techniques beyond mere encryption can further prevent jamming, false data being sent, and such that can be equal security issues.

          What concerns me more is that these rifles will be sending out radio beacons of their location. Various techniques can be used to keep power output low, spread the data out so it doesn't stay on a single frequency, and ot

    • Re:Useless (Score:4, Insightful)

      by ShanghaiBill ( 739463 ) on Monday February 16, 2015 @05:29PM (#49069311)

      I bet this was not designed by a soldier. Try dragging all that high-tech through the mud and sand then see if it still works.

      That was my first thought, although I was a Marine, not a soldier. To a grunt, the most important characteristics in a weapon are:

      1. Reliability
      2. Weight
      3. Maintenance

      They are carrying these things for 16 or 18 hours per day, along with the ammunition. That is exhausting, and exhausted soldiers are not alert and make dumb mistakes that get people killed. When they finally stop the patrol, and go into a defensive position, they do not want to spend the next two hours disassembling and cleaning some complicated piece of equipment. Not every man needs a grenade launcher. One or two per squad is enough, and it is better if it is a separate weapon. I have never met a single grunt that believes replacing the M79 with the M203 was a good idea. Yet TFA compares this new weapon to the M203.

      • I was a Marine, not a soldier.

        Don't take this the wrong way: what's the difference? A sincere question, not a snark.

        I do understand that each of the branches of the US military has its own sense of pride in its mission and mandate, and wants to distinguish itself from others. How do Marines distinguish themselves from other military roles, particularly soldiers?

        Please understand, I'm not trying to start a flame war here. I'm genuinely curious to hear about how Marines and soldiers see each other.

        • by BranMan ( 29917 )

          I'm neither, so take this with a boulder of salt.
          The difference between Soldiers and Marines is that the Soldier generally has a lot more support, and operated in larger numbers.

          When the Army goes in, there is generally close air support, artillery support, logistics support, MPs, lots of infrastructure, lots of hardware, Engineer support, etc..

          When Marines go in, they generally have a whole lot less, if any, of any of that (No implied slight to the Navy intended). Hence the credo "Every Marine is a riflem

          • I'm neither, so take this with a boulder of salt.

            Arguably that could make you more impartial.

            I think your point is that Marines are involved earlier in a conflict, before other infrastructure has arrived. As are other special units, like Army Rangers and Navy Seals, with all due props to them and their respective training and qualifications.

            Does that help?

            If I understood you correctly, then yes, thanks.

    • A scene from a shit film should not be brought up as an example of *anything* happening in reality.

  • Smart? (Score:3, Funny)

    by mistr ( 61923 ) on Monday February 16, 2015 @04:27PM (#49068875) Homepage

    Does it come with optional voice synthesizer to negotiate peaceful solutions on behalf of the soldier?

    Can it distinguish between a gun and a cell phone or a banana and optionally refuse to fire?

    • Oh hey there, I'm soory for shooting you eh!
    • by Ocker3 ( 1232550 )
      What if he has a gun And a banana?
    • I don't understand, just because the suspect is not holding a firearm does not mean they are incapable of killing an officer/soldier, nor does it mean that use of a firearm to stop the suspect is somehow illegal, unethical, or otherwise improper. Blunt objects, fists, and feet kill more people than handguns.

      Also, what if the cell phone is the trigger to a bomb? Or a gun in disguise?

      Here's another idea, if a person comes face to face to someone in uniform and pointing a rifle at them does not immediately e

  • More things for the private soldier to break. And for those of you with no military experience, your average private can break ANYTHING....

    Alternatively, as we found in WW2 and later wars, it means more things to throw away as useless weight that your private is not going to want to lug around on the off chance it might come in useful once a year or so....

    • I'm going to guess the average private will appreciate being able to, say, accurately see and target things in the dark, or have a handy grenade launcher available. The reason a lot of this high-tech weaponry costs so much is (in what I'd guess is the order of importance):

      a) Making it absolutely reliable under any field conditions
      b) Making it "private-proof" (nearly unbreakable)
      c) Making it as light as possible

      Naturally, only time (and soldiers in the field) will tell whether they've succeeded, but given t

  • The main problem with smart guns is the same as with smart humans: intelligence deteriorates dramatically after lying in a swamp for few hours.
  • by nimbius ( 983462 ) on Monday February 16, 2015 @04:37PM (#49068947) Homepage
    The rifle is really pretty slick. Some of the other underdocumented features include:
    1. voice recording of stephen harper espousing platitudes about patriotism and freedom, automatically activated when any american president declares a 'coalition' of anything.
    2. tactical Rick Mercer video will automatically be deployed in the event of house of lords/house of commons dispute over military action or funding
    3. much like the leafs general manager change, this weapon does not statistically improve the likelyhood of winning.
    4. can equip with molson or Labatt, and in the event of an emergency can replace most domestic tap handles.
    5. 3 fire modes, single, auto, and 'prorogue' designed to assist in saving political leadership from being packed up and shipped back to their strip mall constituency in alberta.
    6. 40mm launcher can fire traditional incendiary and gas ordinances as well as store timbits.
    7. Dissipated barrel heat is recycled to bake up to 2 butter tarts.
    • by c ( 8461 )

      8. moving parts can be lubricated with either gun oil or maple syrup.
      9. bayonet lug will accept a non-lethal Shawinigan Handshake module
      10. Canadian flag on the butt to ensure that our troops aren't mistaken for Americans ... this stuff practically writes itself.

      • 11. Optional Coffee Crisp ordinance, for spreading nonlethal goodwill.
        12. Homo milk dispenser, for confusing the hell out of American colleagues.
        13. Used bullet-casings redeemable for merchandise at any Canadian Tire.

    • 6. 40mm launcher can fire traditional incendiary and gas ordinances as well as store timbits.

      Hm. But can it launch timbits? Now that would be "friendly fire."

  • by Fnord666 ( 889225 ) on Monday February 16, 2015 @05:02PM (#49069103) Journal
    This doesn't happen to be the ZF-1 [imfdb.org] does it?
  • Not a member of the Canadian Forces nor am I even a resident of that nation. But I've several friends. The issue here is that most of the equipment that the Canadian military has is completely outdated and work out. Mostly because there is no political will to purchase replacement equipment. In times past the military has had serious issues keeping tired on their vehicles because everything is so old that they can't get replacement tires for them. They've slowly had to cannibalize their small fleet of

    • Of course I do realize that the entire reason for this new weapons system is to at least get better rifles into the hands of the soldiers up there. I just don't think it'll ever get through the politicized purchasing process.

      The entire reason for this new weapons system is to secure lucrative contracts for its manufacturers. If they wanted better rifles into the hands of the soldiers they would be looking into affordable tried and tested weaponry instead of new high tech ones that will almost inevitably lead to decades of expensive 'teething problems'.

  • Just wait until these get left behind in Iraq and Syria. Look out!

  • Is it detachable? Which part makes apologies?
  • ..be connected to the Internet of Things?
  • It's basically the same idea behind the USA XM29 OICW [wikipedia.org] prototype. Which got cancelled to be developed as two separate programs. Of which the rifle was cancelled and the grenade launcher lives as the XM25 CDTE [wikipedia.org]. Which is probably to be cancelled too.

    The South Koreans and the Chinese have something similar to this already in service. The Daewoo K-11 [wikipedia.org] and the ZH-05 [gizmodo.com].

  • for breaking up peaceful protests.
  • Like, you mean like for war [satirewire.com]?
  • I like that they opted for a "Bullup" configuration (magazine located behind the trigger). It seem like the smart choice.

The opossum is a very sophisticated animal. It doesn't even get up until 5 or 6 PM.