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C4iSR: Land

Rheinmetall Defence unveils Gladius 2.0 soldier ensemble

25 September 2017

Rheinmetall Defence has developed a new version of its Gladius soldier system, known as Gladius 2.0, and launched it at DSEI 2017 in London.

Gladius 2.0 is modular and has an open architecture, allowing sensors, communications, and other devices to be easily integrated according to a customer’s specifications. Rheinmetall has developed system interfaces for a pool of hardware from which a customer can choose, including four radios: Elbit’s PNR-1000, the Harris RF-7850M, the Rohde and Schwarz SDHR, and the Thales Solar 400. However, a company representative told Jane’s that other radios and devices can be integrated and Rheinmetall would develop any necessary interfaces.

The advanced version of the Gladius 2.0 system displayed at DSEI 2017, featuring a lightweight goggle projection system. To the left rear is the Gladius 2.0 system integrated with the Harris Tactical Mobility Night Vision Goggle (TM-NVG) and the ARC-4 head tracker, which is the small cube mounted on the right of the helmet (Giles Ebbutt)The advanced version of the Gladius 2.0 system displayed at DSEI 2017, featuring a lightweight goggle projection system. To the left rear is the Gladius 2.0 system integrated with the Harris Tactical Mobility Night Vision Goggle (TM-NVG) and the ARC-4 head tracker, which is the small cube mounted on the right of the helmet (Giles Ebbutt)

The system has three variants: light, basic, and advanced. The light version consists only of a radio and a headset. The basic and advanced versions, intended for section and platoon commanders respectively, provide tactical displays with a battle management system (BMS). The variants were shown with a five-inch PDA for the section commander and a seven-inch tablet for the platoon commander. These versions can also integrate a second radio.

These also provide the computing power for the system. Both were displayed with commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) ruggedised hardware – a Panasonic Toughpad FZ-M1 in the case of the advanced variant – but these could equally be substituted with specific military hardware. The company representative said the preferred operating system was Windows 10 as this eased integration and Rheinmetall can provide the dismounted version of its TacNet BMS software, but any of this could be changed to suit the customer’s requirements.

Both basic and advanced variants have power management systems, with a number of power supply options including batteries and solar power.

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