Euronaval 2022: Size, weight and stability considerations drive development of Shark RWS
General Robotics has adapted the design of its Pitbull remote weapon station (RWS) to meet ‘specific’ naval SOF requirements for firepower from small high-speed craft, CEO Shahar Gal announced on 18 October.
The new Shark weighs less — 85kg without weapons or ammunition — and is more compact than other naval RWSs, the company claimed during Euronaval 2022 in Paris.
General Robotics added that Shark can function remotely ‘on a cluttered deck’, and during tests of a prototype in Sea State 3 it still scored direct hits.
‘We developed the SHARK prototype as a robust yet lightweight system offering seamless remote operation by a single operator with some special adaptations for naval use,’ Gal said, adding that the prototype was further refined based on feedback from customers and partners after field trials.
The kind of small high-speed craft used by naval SOF mean it is difficult to operate an RWS as the platform is seldom steady. To ensure they hit the target with gunfire, SOF operators must therefore approach the target at close range.
Crews on larger boats often operate stabilised weapon stations to improve fire accuracy but these systems are much larger and heavier for the kind of rigid-hull inflatable boats used by SOF, General Robotics argued.
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