The British Army will soon be equipped with cutting-edge weapon sights to identify and track hostile drones.
UK Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S) placed an initial order for 4.6 million pounds ($5.8 million) to Yorkshire-based Viking Arms for hundreds of SMASH Smart Weapon Sight Fire Control Systems.
The device reportedly provides dismounted soldiers with a high-probability rate when targeting small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).
Apart from its tracking ability, the counter-drone system can maintain a lock on its target even if the operator or the enemy drone moves.
The capability would give the British Army a tactical advantage on the battlefield amid the emergence of sophisticated aerial threats, the DE&S stated.
“The need for [counter-drone] capability is very evident and we feel the SMASH solution is truly game changing,” Viking Arms Managing Director Sam MacArthur said.
“We are honored to be supporting our British Armed Forces with technology that will provide significant battlefield advantages, whilst the contract builds on our continued success as a trusted supplier within the UK defense sector.”
The SMASH weapon sights are expected to be delivered by the end of this year.
‘Right Kit, Right Time’
British defense procurement minister James Cartlidge acknowledged that UAVs have an “undeniable” importance on the modern battlefield.
While it is vital to continue developing such technologies, militaries should also be proactive in ensuring that they are protected from enemy drones.
He claimed that investing in the SMASH counter-drone weapon sights reflects the UK’s commitment to procuring “the right kit, at the right time.”
“Delivering this capability into the hands of the [UK Army] by the end of this year demonstrates the commitment to keeping the user equipped for current and future tasks,” DE&S official Paul Cummings added.