Take the shot with the world’s first smart rifle

Date:25 September 2013 Tags:, ,

This advanced shooting system removes the guess work and decides when to commit. It’s been called the world’s first smart rifle…

Imagine a rifle so technologically advanced that it transforms a very average shooter into an expert marksman who hits the bulls-eye every time. Meet the TrackingPoint Precision Guided Firearm (PGF), the first shooting system to integrate microelectronics and wireless technology for the purpose of targeting, tracking, networking and fire control.

Long-range shooting is challenging. The shooter needs to know exactly how his weapon system performs in different environments, and be able to accurately assess the environment in which he’s shooting. Range to target, temperature, altitude and the exact up/down and left/right angular position of the firearm are among the multitude of long-range factors he must calculate quickly and precisely.

After assessing environmental conditions, he needs to work out the ballistic solution specific to the shot by either adjusting the scope turrets or estimating a holdover on the reticle. Once the shot is set up, he must execute it perfectly by eliminating distractions such as breathing and movement. The necessary level of slow-and-steady trigger squeeze and breathing control takes years of practice to master.

Because shooting typically occurs in high-stress situations, either during a hunt or on the battlefield, performing the required cognitive analysis and musculoskeletal control correctly in a stressful environment compounds the difficulty. Consecutive shots at multiple unknown distances can be especially difficult, requiring the shooter to mentally adjust each shot for estimated range, wind and other variables without accurate data. The process takes up valuable time and introduces error, often resulting in a missed shot, even for experienced hunters and shooters.

This is where TrackPoint’s technology kicks in. Mimicking the lock-and-launch shot sequence commonly found in larger military systems, it combines an advanced integral ballistics calculator that performs complex calculations in microseconds and enables the marksman to achieve multiple accurate shots at multiple, unknown distances quickly and effectively.

Moving targets aren’t a problem, either. TrackingPoint’s Predictive Image Processing Engine (PIPE) performs the necessary background tracking algorithms, allowing the Networked Tracking Scope to recognise the angular velocity of the scope relative to the target at all times. The Tracking DSP executes the real-time target tracking algorithms, computing the target position relative to the scope as well as to the PIPE’s background track. Moving target velocity is computed and its expected position of the target is predicted for the next 18,5 milliseconds.

Three variations of TrackingPoint’s precision guided firearm are already on sale (including the XS1 Lapua .338 Magnum), with more models due next year. Starting price: around R225 000.

Video: Explore the incredible Precision Guided Firearm as it tracks and hits moving targets with extreme accuracy


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