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U.S. Army Calls For New Non-Lethal Weapons Technologies

U.S. Army Calls For New Non-Lethal Weapons Technologies

Could the magic bullet be the U.S. Army’s newest non-lethal weapon?

The Army is calling for a new non-lethal weapon that has the ability to hover in mid air while it hunts for a target. Once detected the weapon will incapacitate the target, but will not kill them.

The project dubbed the “Nonlethal Warhead for Miniature Organic Precision Munitions” is directed at small businesses and envisions a weapon that is part bazooka round, part stun gun, and part drone.

These features would meet the specifications called for, but designing such a weapon will be no easy task, as it requires the complete reworking of traditional firearms and other non-lethal technologies. An Army spokesperson said:

“This effort will require innovative research and advancements in non-lethal technologies which can be packaged within a very small volume and weight,” the Army concedes.

The military’s latest nonlethal weapon is a modification of the Lethal Miniature Aerial Munition System (LMAMS), a projectile the Army is hailing as a “magic bullet.” According to the Army’s new solicitations for small business, The warhead “should be capable to acquire a man-size target at the system’s combat range, in less than 20 seconds, flying at an altitude of 100 meter[s] above ground,” and “if conditions for attack are not met, LMAMS will be able to loiter over the target for up to 30 minutes.”

us army shots nonlethal cannons

U.S. and Thai Soldiers Test Out Non-Lethal Cannons

Image Credit, U.S. Army, 2010.

In order to transform the lethal aspect of the LMAMS into non-lethal technology, the Army is encouraging small businesses to think about “mechanical [systems], such as rubber balls; acoustic; chemical; electrical; or dazzle.”

Although it’s not clear exactly what technologies will be born out of the project, the closet the military has to such weaponry is the Switchblade drone developed by Aeronvironment. This hand-launchable drone has the ability to circle in mid air until it locates a target, at which point it begins to home in on the subject.

The problem however, is incorporating non-lethal solutions since many current designs are often fatal at close range.

That’s why the Army is now turning to small business to help develop ideas, and possibly provide the non-lethal solution that could become standard for military, police, border protection and any other law enforcement or security firms around the world.



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