Army looks grimly on the Reaper

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Following detailed trials from July to October 2016, involving five Army units from Forces Command and Special Operations Command, the Australian Army has decided not to progress the Reaper for introduction into service.

A Defence spokesman said the trial of the Reaper weapon load-sharing device was an outcome of the 2015 Australian Army Innovation Day – an annual event during which Army engaged directly with industry on current and emerging commercial products (equipment, training, services and systems) that may satisfy capability gaps in the short or long term.

“The trial of the Reaper was designed to assess the potential of the system for use by dismounted close-combatants in a variety of mission profiles,” the spokesman said.

“The broad focus areas for the trial included evaluating the utility, functionality, safety and future development opportunities for the Reaper in enhancing close combatant lethality and mobility – and, identifying how the Reaper might be integrated with other dismounted close-combatant equipment, selected vehicles and rotary-wing platforms.

“Australian Army units involved in the Reaper trial all indicated it may have utility in specific situations, however these advantages were outweighed by a number of disadvantages.

“These disadvantages included compromised camouflage and concealment, integration with night-fighting equipment and user safety in airframe and vehicle platforms.

“The units also observed the Reaper hindered a soldier’s ability to effectively operate while wearing a helmet and associated ancillaries, such as night-vision goggles.”

 

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Brian Hartigan

Managing Editor
Contact Publishing Pty Ltd

PO Box 3091 Minnamurra
NSW 2533 AUSTRALIA

2 thoughts on “Army looks grimly on the Reaper

  • 26/07/2017 at 1:49 pm
    Permalink

    You might want to fix up that typo in the third paragraph!

    Reply
    • 26/07/2017 at 2:04 pm
      Permalink

      Done. Thanks for your eagle eyes.

      Reply

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