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MILITARY TECHNOLOGY (MILTECH) is the world's leading international tri-service defence monthly magazine in the English language. MILITARY TECHNOLOGY is "Required Reading for Defence Professionals". Follow us on Twitter: MILTECH1

05 March 2015

EnforceTac 2015: Rheinmetall a multifaceted partner for modern tactical law enforcement

Armies and law enforcement agencies today are tasked with many complex and challenging missions. Supplying a vast array of state-of-the-art systems and equipment, Rheinmetall has them covered! Some of the Düsseldorf-based Group’s products and services for law enforcement agencies, special operations forces and the military in general are on display at EnforceTac (Stand 208, Hall 10.1) from 4 to 5 March 2015.

Laser light modules form a major focal point. In addition to the standard effectors, the latest version of Rheinmetall’s well-known Vario-Ray, the Vario-Ray SWIR, can be optionally equipped with an integrated shortwave infrared (SWIR) target marker. This marker cannot be seen with conventional night vision goggles. Using the SWIR gives police and soldiers a new technological edge at a time when residual light amplification technology has become widely available. Steeling a march on the competition, Rheinmetall is the first company to supply an integrated target marker for small arms in the SWIR spectrum.

The compact Vario-Ray features the same effectors as the full-scale series version. Optimized with regard to size and mass, its already low weight has been reduced by a further ten grams. Here too, an integrated SWIR marker is available as an added option.

With the TAC-Ray 1500, Rheinmetall is entering new product territory. It is full-fledged laser module with red light and infrared target markers as well as a focusable IR illuminator in combination with a laser rangefinder. All of this is contained in a surprisingly small, lightweight housing. The device can be mounted on small arms using a Picatinny rail or used in hand-held mode. An additional SWIR target marker is also available for the TAC-Ray 1500 as an option. Furthermore, an external white light torch/flashlight can also be attached.

The modularly designed cFL Mk3 laser light module offers entirely new possibilities. As standard equipment, it features a white light torch/flashlight, red light and infrared target markers and an IR illuminator. Additional modules can be attached and controlled via an interface. These include a laser rangefinder and a high-definition camera. Owing to its modularity, the device can be modified to meet specific operational requirements. This way, there is no need to buy and carry several devices with redundant capabilities, thus minimizing the financial and logistical burden.

When it comes to infantry weapon systems, factors such as modularity, scalability and expandability are driving future developments. A counter-defilade capability – i.e. the ability to engage targets behind cover – as well as longer ranges of engagement, penetrating power and first-shot hit probabilities all contribute to greater combat effectiveness. Other imperatives include cost effectiveness, the ability to integrate effectors into other weapons and C4I systems – to say nothing of safety considerations. Responding to the latter requirement, for example, is the company’s insensitive ammunition technology. This assures that shells or propellant won’t explode due to mechanical stress, a direct hit or exposure to flames.

Rheinmetall’s comprehensive activities in the field of 40mm ammunition address these requirements. Supporting its claim to be a “one-stop shop” for 40mm weapon systems, Europe’s leading supplier of ground forces technology has systematically expanded its portfolio of 40mm ammunition types. In the meantime, it covers the complete spectrum – from non-lethal colour-marking rounds to the latest airburst grenades. Just recently, the Bundeswehr introduced the Rheinmetall-made DM131, a 40mm x 53 airburst round.

In the special effects domain, the Group is showcasing its improved flash-bang stun grenade, which features bottom-top venting (BTV) technology. Its new chamber system is designed for two loudness levels: 180 dB for military applications and 170 dB for law enforcement operations. Designed for maximum flexibility, the new generation can be used either with a conventional flash-bang charge or a newly developed perchlorate-free charge. Moreover, the new perchlorate special effect charge produces less smoke than its forerunner.

Rheinmetall has also improved its classic SPIRCO fast-acting smoke/obscurant grenade. To enable detection and engagement of hostile forces even at night, Rheinmetall developed the hand-launched Mithras flare for signalling and battlefield illumination. With ranges of 300, 600 and 1,000 metres, Mithras is available in normal and IR versions. This signal ammunition is already in service with the British, Danish, Estonian, French, Lithuanian, Omani and Thai armed forces.

In order to better serve the law enforcement sector, Rheinmetall is expanding its network of sales partners. In Germany the renowned Pol-Tec of Fürth has assumed responsibility for marketing the Group’s laser light module products, effective immediately.
Andre Forkert

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