New military goggles combine nightvision and thermal imaging

New military goggles combine nightvision and thermal imaging.

Special Forces operators with night vison googless

Nightvision and thermal imaging play similar — but very distinct — roles on the modern battlefield. Soldiers utilize night vision to illuminate their darkened surroundings while thermal imaging is employed to illuminate darkened targets. But until now, soldiers have had to carry separate imaging systems for each, which negatively impacts how quickly they can switch optics and acquire their targets. BAE Systems, however, announced Monday a new kind of optic that packs the functionality of both into a single unit.

“On today’s battlefield, this slower [two optic] approach, which is often further hampered by heavy smoke or bad weather, compromises soldiers’ safety and can reduce mission effectiveness,” a BAE release reads. “By integrating night vision and thermal targeting capabilities into one sight displayed on the soldiers’ goggles, BAE Systems’ new solution allows troops to more easily acquire targets and engage faster.”

While the optic itself is mounted on the soldier’s rifle, what it sees is actually beamed via a Bluetooth connection to a head-mounted display. This allows the warfighter to quickly toggle between the two modes at the push of a button. The US Army’s Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate has awarded BAE a five-year $434 million contract to continue the optic’s development. There is no word yet on how much the finished products would cost or how soon they’ll actually actually make it to combat zones.

[Image credit: Getty (lead), BAE Systems (inline)]

Taurus Curve: Futuristic Concealed Carry

Say hello to the Taurus Curve

taurus curve

The Taurus Curve is a completely new type of concealed-carry handgun. Designed from the ground up for deep concealment and discreet carry, the Curve is contoured to fit the human body.

It’s an unusual handgun. Small and lightweight at just a hair over 10 ounces, this new .380 ACP subcompact stands alone with its unique bowed frame that lays flat across the hip. Taurus is calling it “the gun you wear” and it fits.

To help tame the recoil of the featherweight chassis Taurus decided to build the Curve on a locked-breach action. This will make the Curve less snappy compared to similar-sized blowback pistols.

Since the recoil is controlled by the locked barrel, the recoil spring weight can be reduced as well. Combined with the fish scale slide serrations Taurus wants to make this a gun that’s easy to rack as well as to shoot.

This is a gun that’s meant to be worn every day no matter how you’re dressed. It doesn’t need a holster with its integral clip and completely dehorned, snag-free surface. Even the barrel is swept back to match the curves of the muzzle.

Should the gun print in tight-fitting clothes no one will make it for a handgun. Hanging down beneath the muzzle is a combination weaponlight and laser sight. This gives the Curve a broad profile that looks more like a wallet than a gun.

With the laser sight and LED light the Curve is designed to be an intuitive shooter. The gun doesn’t have traditional sights although the bore runs parallel to the top of the slide for help aiming the pistol should the light and laser fail.

the-all-new-taurus-curve

That’s unlikely as the laser and light module are manufactured for Taurus by LaserLyte, a leader in laser sights and weapon lights.

The frame of the Curve is completely smooth with a flush activation switch for the light and laser on the right side. The mag release is also flush and built into the six-round magazine.

Somewhat similar to European-style mag releases the magazine is released by grabbing it with the left hand to pull it out. A magazine safety serves as the gun’s only manual safety and the Curve uses a double-action-only trigger to help prevent negligent or accidental discharge.

Of course with a design like this it’s naturally for right-handed shooters and poses problems for lefties.

The controls, besides the trigger, are completely backwards and the curve of the gun makes it go from a comfortable design to a literal pain in the butt but there’s hope.

The Curve has a serialized sub-frame and looks like a modular design similar to the Beretta Nano andSIG P320. If that is indeed the case then it will be possible to pop the internals of the gun and drop them into a left-handed frame.

Since the sub-frame is, for legal purposes, the handgun, grip frames can be sold separately, even online, without having to go through a dealer. A left-handed conversion kit or dedicated lefty model may be in the works.

For now we expect this to be a solid seller for righties, though. With an ultra budget-friendly $392 MSRP the Curve is priced lower than a lot of micro .380s and that doesn’t even consider the light and laser sight module.

The gun comes with a spare magazine and a trigger guard clip. This provides an extra layer of protection when wearing the Curve by eliminating the possibility of something pushing through your clothes and pulling the trigger. The clip is tied to a belt or belt loop and will automatically get yanked off the gun if it ever needs to be drawn.

The Curve is the first of its kind in more than one way. Taurus is going to move a lot of these if just to satisfy people’s curiosity. The Curve isn’t a novelty and Taurus has put a lot of thought into the design, and it shows.

If you’re one of the curious when it comes to the new Curve check out The Gun You Wear.

posted from guns.com

Remote-control cannon installed atop wall near Bethlehem

Wall north of Bethlehem, from this site

detail of photograph of wall north of Bethlehem

Update: Since we posted the story below, it appears that our suggestion that the gun fires live ammunition was in error. Ryan Rodrick Beiler has posted pictures on twitter pointing to the idea that the gun is a water cannon, designed to spray skunk water for riot control. Beiler tweets a picture showing the device was there during last week’s Palestine marathon.

Tom Suarez also says that it is a water cannon. “I live right there,  and our understanding has been that it is a water cannon (this coming from a Palestinian here who does some journalism). I see it swivel around, but have never seen it ‘work’”.

Beiler also tweets his photo of a gun atop the Erez crossing at Gaza that he says is the real thing: a remote-controlled machine gun that fires ammunition at people.

Original post: 

The above device, fixed lately to the top of the separation wall north of Bethlehem, is a remote-controlled machine gun, according to Palestinian sources. Ma’an News published a report on the device three days ago, saying it’s “unprecedented” and is causing anxiety among Bethlehemites. A Facebook page called “Bethlahem Today” has the same report.

Here’s a crude automatic translation of the Arabic report:

Israeli occupying forces erected Sunday, machine guns equipped with cameras on top of the security wall surrounding the Bilal bin Rabah mosque, North of Bethlehem.

Israeli forces provided each machine gun cameras from large high-capacity and possibility of photography relatively long distances and to Bethlehem in the direction of the education of the old junction.

This allows the cameras to Israeli soldiers monitor the city of Bethlehem and targeting citizens far below that reveal themselves and sees them one using special monitors in the occupied area of the mosque and surrounded by walls from all directions.

Jareer Kassis, an Arabic speaker in the States, says:

The reports are consistent with this article in Wired, 2007, on Israel developing remote controlled machine guns.

For years and years, the Israeli military has been trying to figure out a way to keep Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip from crossing over into Israel proper. The latest tactic: create a set of “automated kill zones” by networking together remote-controlled machine guns, ground sensors, and drones along the 60-kilometer border.

Thanks to Alex Kane and Icarus Verum.

Mondoweiss

A Sniping Sprinkler That Only Targets Your Plants When They Need Water

I posted the following article as it related to drones, remote control, building security and keeping your trees growning…

Link

A Sniping Sprinkler That Only Targets Your Plants When They Need Water

A built-in sprinkler system is a better way to water a garden than just standing there randomly blasting plants with a hose. And taking that idea one step further, the Dropletturns your sprinklers into intelligent snipers that only water the plants you tell them to using a focused stream—except when rainy weather already has.

When connected to your home’s Wi-Fi network the compact Droplet water cannons can not only be programmed to fire exactly where you target them, you can also program an exhaustively detailed schedule of when they should and shouldn’t blast away.

But the software controlling the sprinklers also has access to detailed weather reports so it knows not to water if there’s strong odds it’s going to rain soon. You can even specify the type of plants and soil it’s watering, and it will adjust its own schedule to account for special needs.

A Sniping Sprinkler That Only Targets Your Plants When They Need Water

Besides being a much better way to water a garden for the lazy and technologically inclined, the Droplet is also promised to dramatically reduce your water consumption—up to 90 percent—saving you hundreds of dollars on your water bill every year. Which is great because each Droplet sprinkler head will cost you $300 once it’s finally available.

So we might actually hold out for generation two that hopefully introduces some motion tracking capabilities to constantly harass the local squirrel population—even if it triples our water bill. [Droplet via Gizmag]

A Gun Map That’s a Little Different

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Different cultures, different customs, or so the saying goes

The saying also apparently applies to rifle preferences for the world’s militaries, as the followingmap illustrates.

[Map note from Gizmodo: “Judging by the map’s choice of colors, it seems to group weapons that are of a similar family together by color”]:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Click to enlarge (imgur.com)

Obviously, there are many, many more types of rifles than the ones shown on the map, but as Gizmodo notes, the “map gives a general gist of each military’s standardization.”

And here are a few of the more popular rifles referenced in the map:

M4:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

C7:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

FX-05:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

GALIL:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

FAL:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

M16:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

FAMAS:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

IMBEL MD-2:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

SG 540:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

AK 47:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

SA80:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

R4:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons

M96:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

G36:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

hk-usa.com

F88 AUSTEYR:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

QBZ 95:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

INSAS:

Heres a Map of Rifle Preferences By the Worlds Militaries

Wikimedia Commons.

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Tactical blind fire!

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Tactical blind fire! (VIDEO)

Never underestimate the value of tactical blind fire. And when you’re out of ammo, don’t reload. Throw your gun downrange and hope you knock someone out. Then you can move foreward, acquire their gun and use it to tactically blindfire and move up. Blind fire, throw gun, acquire and move up. Rinse, repeat.

Do you even Dynamic Pie Concepts, bro?

Shooter Picks the Target, ‘Smart’ Gun Decides When to Fire

Link

Shooter Picks the Target, ‘Smart’ Gun Decides When to Fire

A Texas company has developed a high-tech rifle that decides for itself the exact moment to fire — enabling the shooter to hit targets with much more accuracy.

“It allows people to make first round hits at extreme ranges, we’re talking 1,000 yards, or 1,200 yards,” says TrackingPoint CEO Jason Schauble.

An onboard computer does all the work for you, with controls automatically adjusting for accuracy. You lock the target but when you pull the trigger, the gun picks the exact moment to fire.

The firearm, which comes with a price tag of about $27,000 is primarily marketed to hunters, but some critics are concerned about the weapon’s ability to turn novice shooters into expert marksmen.

Schauble doesn’t see it that way, insisting that anyone who wants to purchase one still has to go through the same screening process as he or she would to own any other kind of weapon.