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Weapons Trial Offers New Capability Options For Defence

File photo of the Area Denial Weapon System.

Canberra, Australia (SPX) Aug 09, 2005
The successful firing of a new type of remote-controlled weapon concept demonstrator has opened the door to potential new capability options for the Australian Defence Force.

Defence Minister Robert Hill congratulated the project consortium, led by the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO), on the success of the weapon concept trial held at Port Wakefield Proof and Experimental Range in South Australia.

Senator Hill said the consortium, which includes private sector companies Metal Storm and Nico-Pyrotechnik, used Metal Storm technology to develop a new weapon concept. The concept demonstrator is known as the Area Denial Weapon System (ADWS). "If developed further this new weapons concept would have the potential to be used on operations to defend vital assets such as airfields and ships," Senator Hill said.

"The concept demonstrator includes a multi-barrel weapon pod linked to a fire control system and a central control station. Each pod had the capability to fire up to 20 projectiles using various rates of fire and firing sequences that are chosen by an operator at the control station.

"With further development this concept could potentially provide a type of remote-controlled weapons system that might be adapted to a number of Defence capabilities and used to protect assets or deny access to large areas of land.

"As the communications use Internet type technology, it is feasible to locate the control system anywhere in the world. It would also be possible for one operator to control a number of ADWS sites."

Senator Hill said the ADWS concept was designed as a replacement capability to anti-personnel land mines. Australia is a signatory to the 1997 Ottawa Treaty which bans the use of anti-personnel land mines. Senator Hill said the ADWS was a good example of the use of concept demonstrators to build capability for Defence.

Defence has an established Capability and Technology Demonstrator (CTD) Program under which Defence and industry work together to develop concept demonstrator technologies with the potential to significantly boost future Defence capability.

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