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'Most Innovative Defense Technology' 2008 Award Nominee

Rifle Input Control

Kord Defence

Today's soldiers are required to operate a number of electronic devices - each with its own functionality and controls, all that, without taking hands off the weapon and eyes off the performing task. Thales Australia has liscenced Kord Defence's rifle input control (RIC) interface, a five-button controller designed for use by dismounted close combat soldiers. RIC provides a fast and simple way of remotely controlling devices attached to their weapon, body or helmet, without the need to take their eyes off the task or their hands off the weapon adaptable to various rifles which enable warfighters to do this virtually impossible task. The weapon mounted pushbutton controller provides fast, one-hand and 'eyes free' access control of a range of devices directly from the weapon. RIC's three- or five-button controller attaches to the front of the rifle. (more...)

The system is based on the patented Chordic Graphical User Interface (CGUI) technology developed at the Australian Institute of Marine Science, and already used to control the Royal Australian Navy's Mine warfare Underwater Combat Systems (MUCS). The system preset functions are triggered by different combinations of a several pushbuttons (called chords). Eventually, every rifleman could be trained to 'play his rifle', operating all his systems functions without letting loose of the grip.

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Thales and Kord Defense are currently working on two versions of the RIC. The first will be fully integrated into the Enhanced F88 Austeyr rifle, which will be manufactured by Thales Australia and is currently in the design stage under the Defence Materiel Organisation's LAND 125 - Lethality project. Ruggedized trial versions are expected to be available in mid 2009, with full production capability later the same year. A second version, which has potential for significant export sales, comprises a standalone unit that can be fitted to the Steyr, as well as many other assault rifles in service around the world. The companies are eying the M4 carbine, MP-5A and M-16 weapons as candidates, for which RIC could become a universal accessory for integration into any weapon, mounted on the lower picattiny rail. "Kord's technology is unique, and their approach to soldier systems integration will attract attention from around the world." said Chris Jenkins, Thales Australia's managing director. "We are looking forward to jointly offering this groundbreaking solution to the Australian Defence Force.

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