C4iSR: Joint & Common Equipment

Meggitt Training Systems reveals ‘tetherless’ system for indoor weapon training

04 December 2018

Meggitt’s BlueRail tetherless system mounted on the Picatinny rail of an M4 together with the drop-in BlueAir conversion kit, showing the bolt loose and the integration module inserted in the breech above the magazine housing. The wire from the BlueRail module can be seen going down the barrel. Source: Giles Ebbutt

Meggitt Training Systems has developed a new tetherless system for indoor weapon training simulators that enables the use of existing personal weapons, it was revealed at the 2018 Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation, and Education Conference (I/ITSEC) in Orlando, Florida, in November.

The new system, called BlueRail, builds on the technology in Meggitt's existing tetherless BlueFire weapons that are used in its indoor simulators such as the FATS100MIL, widely used by US and other forces.

The BlueRail module is a small box that can be mounted on a Picatinny rail, providing a wireless connection to the range system for weapon usage data. It will provide shot detection; weapon cant; aim point; and weapon trace showing target acquisition, trigger pull analysis, and recoil management.

The BlueFire module can be used with a variety of recoil methods, including live and blank rounds, but the principal usage is likely to be with Meggitt's BlueAir drop-in recoil kit for indoor simulator use with personal weapons. In this configuration a substitute bolt and integration module are inserted into the weapon, with the latter connected via a wire through the barrel to the BlueFire module. The existing high-pressure (HP) air BlueFire smart magazine is then used to provide recoil.

Matthew Cunningham, director, virtual system sales for Meggitt, told Jane's that development of BlueRail began in mid-2017 at the request of the United States Marine Corps, whose Indoor Simulated Marksmanship Trainer is based on the FATS100MIL. He said BlueRail devices have so far been developed for the M4, M17, and M18 weapons but Meggitt is "working towards devices for 20 weapon types".

In response to a US Army requirement, Meggitt has also developed a wireless BlueFire M249 light machine gun (LMG), which Cunningham said was the first tetherless indoor training LMG using HP air.

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