|Representational image of Israeli firm Smart Shooter's SMASH 2000 Plus system deployed on a rifle | Photo courtesy: Captain Fred Warmer|
New Delhi: Israeli defence firm Smart Shooter, whose new-age fire-control system turns assault rifles into smart weapons, is looking to set up a manufacturing plant in India, eyeing more contracts besides the one it has already bagged from the Indian Navy.
The Navy had last month gone in for an unspecified number of ‘SMASH-2000 Plus’ systems, which are already in use by Israeli and American special forces, apart from some other countries. The Army and the Border Security Force are evaluating it for anti-drone operations. The system features a built-in targeting algorithm that can track and hit multiple targets at first shot, including drones.
“We have got the permission from our defence ministry, and we are willing to cooperate with India,” Smart Shooter’s vice-president (business development) Abraham Mazor said.
Sharone Aloni, vice-president (research and development), added that while Smart Shooter currently does all research, marketing and production from its facility in Israel, the firm is looking at the possibility of making the system in other locations, and India is one of the options.
The company, in a statement said it is committed to complying with all Indian requirements and regulations as part of the ‘Make in India’ program. Mazor stressed that Smart Shooter owns the entire intellectual property and technological knowhow of the system, and so, there will be no issue in transferring it to India.
“It all depends on quantity, and quantity should justify the investment we are going to make,” he said.
For the Navy’s order, the firm has tied up with an Indian company, Defsys, for maintenance of the systems.
“We have cooperated with a local company. We are together planning how to make it in India,” Mazor said.
What Is SMASH-2000 Plus?
Mazor noted that the modern battlefield is becoming more complex, but, with the SMASH system, a soldier has to simply decide whom or what he wants to shoot at.
Aloni said the system can be fixed on to any assault rifle without any need of modifications in most cases, adding that the system focuses on “one shot, one hit”, or the first-round hit.
“The system tells the user when to shoot,” Aloni said, adding that the company first went in for ground targets and moved on to aerial targets like drones.
Mazor said, worldwide, a lot of research and development has gone into making weapons accurate, but there has not been much movement on assault rifles, which continue to be fired in bursts to get a good hit.
“The SMASH-2000 changes the way a soldier functions in the battlefield,” he said.