Tag Archives: Military-Weapons-and-Vehicles

Future Weapons

Richard MackRichard Machowicz, the host of The Military Channel’s Future Weapons, probably has the best job on the planet. I mean, after 10 years in the Navy SEALS he probably got bored with all the intense training and bad ass weapons right? I guess not. Now he gets to enjoy augmented civilian status as he still has access to top secret facilities and weapons technology, which he proudly displays with cold precision on his Military/Discovery Channel show Future Weapons. Basically, “Mack” is our hero here at Future Firepower. Its not like he has a show where he just narrates while soldiers shoot all the guns and show off, he actually gets to get into the tanks and drive them, pick up the brand new machine gun prototype and unload as many clips as he wants; and he does it all with perfectly honed form and skill. Probably the best moment was when Mack competed against a US soldier in a cold-bore sniper rifle competition, and Mack out shot the soldier with a perfect headshot with the 1st round. Obviously, he has extreme weapons training. It’s been a long time coming that Discovery Networks finally launched the Military Channel, and it was long enough that they finally came out with Future Weapons. Richard Machowicz 2Discovery Networks has always been very respectfully patriotic, and they have also done a good job keeping up with the times by gradually increasing their military-related broadcasting. I remember as a child the best show that I could find was Wings on the regular discovery channel. I guess they could tell that I watched it all day long, and made the military channel with robust programming just for me. Now all the Military Channel needs to do is quit showing so many reruns and kick their production engine into high gear. They need to have a million different shows with a million different weapons, hell, they should just start inventing weapons. Long live the military channel, the embodiment of my inspiration for this humble website, FutureFirepower.com.

Mack is also the author of a book: Unleashing the Warrior Within, and also founder of the Bukido Institute.

Read Mack’s Wikipedia Bio here.

Fire Scout – UAV Helicopter

Manufacturer: Northrop Grumman [NYSE: NOC]
Fire Scout DisplayResearch and development dollars are obviously not an object for Northrop Grumman.  From behind closed doors emerges a UAV helicopter attack ship; no doubt the product of an intense development program.  The Fire Scout UAV is capable of autonomous take-off, landing, and flight; but of course it can be controlled remotely as well.  Likewise, I have no doubt that there has also been some engineering man hours put into enabling it for preprogrammed strike missions.  Of course they’ve already equipped some with the Metal Storm weapon, the highest round-per-second gun ever built, mounted on the weapons pylons.  Technically, the Fire Scout can be equipped with a multitude of different equipment, from the most deadly weapons to even peaceful observational equipment.
Fire Scout LandThis bad boy has already been procured by the US Army, whose interest in turn spurred a purchase by the US Navy.  Apparently, it’s also impressive that the Fire Scout  landed on a moving ship, autonomously, during its testing phase, which demonstrated it’s computerized navigation system compensating for the movement of the landing pad.  Deployment plans schedule the Fire Scout to be used at the brigade level, and I’m sure that they are looking forward to having such a weapon added to their already omnipotently superior arsenal.  On a final note, the Fire Scout is also designed to operate as one of the many cogs in the network-centric weapons development program known as Future Combat Systems.
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MGL M32 – Multiple Grenade Launcher

Manufacturer: Milkor USA Inc.
MGLThe phrase of the day today folks is this: Force Multiplier.

As defined by Wikipedia:

A force multiplier is a term referring to a factor that dramatically increases (hence “multiplies”) the effectiveness of a group or unit. The term was originally used by the military to describe elite units, such as Special Forces, that could be used to increase the effectiveness of indigenous forces by training them to fight guerilla warfare, but the term has broadened in usage and is now used frequently outside the military domain.

The Milkor Mk32 MGL Multiple Grenade Launcher does exactly this. A single soldier is handed the ability to wreak havoc on a scale simply not possible before he was handed an MGL Mk32. For whatever reason, lets call it our reliance on technology; Western nations with smaller populations develop weapons which effectively work around our lack of manpower, and we make each man more powerful. Hence the multiplication of force. Like I always tell people wary of the galactic number of soldiers fielded by the PLA of China, what can 20 guys with Ak-47s do to one guy with a grenade machine gun? Nothing. It is most probable that they would be under the impression that they were under attack from multiple mortar teams, and would take cover.
MGL Grenade LauncherNow picture multiple platoons of soldiers all armed with MGL Mk32s, and you’ve got yourself a situation that you probably would rather not get involved in; a deterrent force multiplier. Aside from being the first multiple grenade launcher, the MGL also sports all of the other high-technology you would expect with a futuristic weapon. A red-dot site, multiple variants with specialized ammunition, and all-weather and lightweight variants. You do the calculations, the MGL Mk32 is simply a force multiplier product that you don’t want to be divided by.

Check out this Future Weapons MK32 video. It shows many of the advanced uses for the MGL.
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MQ9 Reaper – Predator UAV – Iraqi Drone of Death

The MQ9 Reaper
Manufacturer: General Atomics Aeronautical Systems
MQ9 REAPER
–An altitude, endurance, and long-range upgrade to the original Predator UAV


First MQ 9 Reaper at Creech AFB 2007Imagine coming home from a hard day’s work, relaxing on the couch, and busting out your XBOX 360. Instead of playing a video game, you decide it would be nice to unwind while thinking to yourself…”ten seconds to impact”, then witnessing the full-color obliteration of an opportunistic target in Iraq. While this situation is not entirely accurate, it is very close to what US Air Force pilots of tomorrow will be doing on a daily basis as they command the new squadron of MQ9 Reapers set to arrive in Iraq. Controlled–piloted–from a base in Nevada, remote-control airplanes with laser-guided bombs and hellfire missiles attached to them will be raining death from above on anything that might look out of place. In fact, it seems like all the hoopla about the Democratically supported troop “pull out” seems more or less like this–human army out, robot army in. About 60 MQ9s have been ordered by the air force, and they will be flying out of the largest US Air Force base in Iraq, Balad Air Base just outside of Baghdad. Likewise, Balad has begun construction of a 400,000 sq. ft. expansion of the runway to accommodate the staging of the new Reapers. Ultimately, the MQ9 Reaper represents the culmination of about 20 years of R&D, mostly carried out by engineering students working at our nations best research universities. From MIT to Georgia Tech, probably millions of man-hours from our brightest aeronautical, electrical, and mechanical engineering students seeking their doctorates have been, and likely unknowingly, contributing to the final product that represents the forefront of a futuristic military comprised of hunter-killer robots and aircraft. As long as they are used to dominate the world, then I guess that no time has been wasted, not even by reading this article. Have a nice day, and never forget that our people are the most valuable asset we have in America.

See this broadcast by the Air Force on their UAV programs.
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Also check out another MQ9 Reaper post by Joe.

TROPHY – Active Military Vehicle Defense

When armor just isn’t strong enough and munitions keep evolving such as the armor pier cing tandem rpg 27 (two shape charges), “active protection systems” are called upon. Currently in development for the Striker and the Israeli Merkava main battle tank is the TROPHY active protection system which promises to revolutionize military vehicle and armor defense. The U.S is not currently partaking in RAFAEL’s TROPHY weapon system as it has contracted a favorite , Raytheon, to build an equivalent system for its vehicles.

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TROPHY is being produced by RAPHAEL and maintains a 360 degree field of view with its radar. The TROPHY will pick up incoming threats using its radar and do some complicated physics and mathematics to find a bearing of the incoming threat. Once the threat is identified the TROPHY system calculates the best time and angle that it should fire its shotgun-like pellets which repel the incoming threat. The system is also capable of engaging multiple threats simultaneously from different directions.

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TROPHY is designed to work against all incoming anti-tank missiles and Rocket propelled grenades. Also the ability to fire upon incoming threats on the move gives infantry vehicles and tanks equipped with the TROPHY system the ability to evade the enemy while under attack. Another advantage is that vehicles equipped with the TROPHY weapon system won’t need heavy armor installments that slow them down like explosive reactive armor. The Trophy system may not completely alleviate the need for reactive armor installments as the new “active protection system” is not capable of defending againsty land mines, artillery, ant-tank guns, or IED attacks.

The British Accuracy International AS50 BMG Sniper Rifle

Accuracy International AS50as50
This awesome weapons represents the British attempt at designing the worlds greatest sniper rifle. Similar in design and features to the Barrett M107 .50 caliber sniper rifle, the Accuracy International AS50 certainly exhibits the pinnacle of futuristic sniper rifle engineering. The greatest difficulty to overcome when designing a rifle of such high caliber is how to effectively and efficiently disperse the recoil, and the AS50 employs a free-floating barrel with a dual chamber muzzle brake to accomplish this feat. One important thing to note about this rifle though, is that it is truly designed as an anti-material weapon, meaning that it is intended to be armor-piercing to take out lightly armored vehicles such as APCs and trucks rather than intended as anti-personnel. However though, the accompanying video definitely stirs the imagination when it shows the melons, the perfect shape for a human head, being blown apart after the round penetrates some concrete blocks. I’m just waiting for the X-ray vision scope to be put on this bad boy, watch out everyone!

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The AS50 has documented kills in Iraq where APCs where taken out from over a mile away, they had no idea what was hitting them.

Slow-Motion MLRS Video – Rocket

MLRS breakdownThe video below shows the multiple Launch Rocket System developed by Lockheed Martin in action in slow motion. The Guided MLRS (GMLRS) rocket is being developed under an international cooperative program with the United States, United Kingdom, Italy, France and Germany. GMLRS will have a global positioning system aided inertial guidance package integrated in a rocket body. Additionally, small canards on the guided rocket nose will add basic maneuverability to further enhance the accuracy of the system.

Click here to open the video in a new Window

For more information about the MLRS or Multiple launch rocket System check out another video and post here.

Barrett M107 Sniper Rifle – Future Weapons video

Barrett XM107The Barrett M107 BMG .50 Caliber Sniper Rifle

Manufacturer: Barrett Firearms Company

Considering the physics behind sniper rifle technology, the rule is: the larger the projectile the greater the accuracy and destructive power. Thats why arms manufacturers have recently developed new sniper rifle designs that rapidly fire .50 caliber rounds, which are powerful enough to take out lightly armored vehicles.

M82 USMCA .50 caliber machine gun can typically be found mounted on top of HMMVS and armored vehicles, but Barrett has taken the concept in a different direction: long distance and stealthy destruction. Destruction is an interesting word in itself, which literally implies to take something apart, and with the Barrett’s ability to penetrate steel armor, one can only imagine the effect on a human torso or head. Likewise, the Barrett isn’t the only .50 caliber sniper rifle on the fighting fields, British company Accuracy International recently unveiled its AS50 sniper rifle, which rivals the capabilities of the Barrett M107.

Check out this Barrett M107 video, I believe that it will get the point across.
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PAC-3 Patriot Missile – Surface to Air Missile – Raytheon

250px Patriot missile launchSurface to Air Missiles or SAM’s are a crucial addition to every countries military force. Being able to defend against air attacks from ballistic missiles, bombers, and fighters, gives any military an advantage over their adversary. The Patriot surface-to-air missile is an incredible weapon that is very precise in shooting down incoming munitions or aircraft. The patriot Missile is produced by Lockheed Martin and Raytheon. The patriot is in service in a number of countries including Kuwait, Germany, Greece, Israel, and of course the United States. The range of the missile is 70 Km, and the Patriot Missiles is capable of mid-course correction to adjust its flight pattern to dynamic air threats. The video Below shows an aircraft being shot down by the patriot missile weapon system.

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The Patriot missile is capable of simultaneously attacking multiple targets. In Total, There are eight different variants of Patriot missiles: Standard, ASOJ/SOJC, PAC-2, PAC-2 GEM, GEM/C, GEM/T (or GEM+), and the PAC-3. The Pac 3 is the most significant upgrade the Patriot missile has seen, and greatly increases the SAM’s ability to intercept missiles of all types. The Patriot’s PAC-3 version will be the primary surface to air missile for MEADS system, which is scheduled to enter service alongside the Patriot in 2012. Currently The M901 remotely operated launching station is used to transport and launch the Patriot Missiles. For more about the Patriot’s Advanced Capabilities please tune in to the video below.

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Stryker Armored Vehicle – Mobile Gun System

STRYKER ARMORED VEHICLE
Manufacturer: General Dynamics [NYSE: GD]
Stryker Mobile Gun System
The latest production to roll out en masse from General Dynamic’s war factories is the Stryker Armored Vehicle. Since the Iraq War has evolved into the constant urban battle with the Muslim insurgency, America has since devised some innovations to armored vehicle design to increase the lethality and deployability of urban combat teams. These newer urban combat teams have been built around a doctrine described as the Brigade Combat Team, which aims to incorporate the latest in situational awareness electronics with increased firepower and protection in the urban environment. For example, the Stryker vehicle is digitally linked to all of its troops, so that they know where the armor and cover is, and can divert or flush enemies into an area where they can be blasted by the Stryker. There exist different variants of the Stryker, the most impressive being the Mobile Gun System variant, which is pictured above. The Mobile Gun System fires 105mm cannon that can fire either armor piercing rounds or anti-personnel rounds that can fragment shrapnel over large areas. Putting these capabilities into the hands of urban combat teams dramatically increases their effectiveness, not only through the obvious firepower advantage, but also by boosting morale. The cannon mount on the Stryker could be used to take out snipers easily by simply destroying the suspected spot completely. Likewise, ambushes or large groups of combatants could be easily dealt with by the shrapnel rounds of the 105 mm cannon. All in all, having the Stryker on the ground in any urban scenario instantly promotes success.

Check out this Stryker video!
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