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General Dynamics and Colt Canada team on smartphone technology for rifles

On the eve of Soldier Systems showcase in Ottawa, General Dynamics Canada and Colt Canada announced a partnership to network Colt’s Sniper (Soldier) Weapon & Observer Reconnaissance Devices (SWORD) system.

SWORD integrates weapon-mounted surveillance and targeting devices with smartphone-like technology and brings situational-awareness information directly to the solider via the weapon.

The companies said it will be offered as an alternative to radio-centric individual soldier systems.

“By combining modern smartphone technology with weapon-mounted scopes and laser rangefinders, soldiers have all the information they need, literally at their fingertips,” explained Jeff MacLeod, general manager of Colt Canada. “SWORD is not about simply delivering a computer or a display to soldiers; it delivers an entirely new capability centered on the rifle.”

David Ibbetson, vice president of General Dynamics C4 Systems International, said the partnership builds on the strengths of both companies. “Colt has worldwide expertise in developing and delivering rifles, while General Dynamics has the networking experience needed to connect individual soldiers. The combined solution gives soldiers the smartphone capability they have been asking for in the form of an Android-networked rifle.”

Based on commercial off-the-shelf components, the SWORD system provides power, data and navigation infrastructure within the weapon, including GPS and inertial navigation for GPS-denied situations, and has the ability to host battle management applications.

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