MIDDLETOWN, R.I., 4 June 2010. KVH Industries Inc. in Middletown, R.I., is providing fiber optic gyros (FOGs) to be used in remote weapons stations (RWS) that enable gunners on combat vehicles to operate, aim, and fire from inside their armored vehicles away from hostile fire.
KVH is providing the fiber optic gyro electro-optical technology under terms of a $7.1 million order from a major defense contractor. Although KVH is not naming its customer, major supplies of U.S. remote weapons stations include Kongsberg Defence Systems in Kongsberg, Norway, and EOS Technologies Inc. in Tucson, Ariz.
Kongsberg Defence Systems makes the U.S. Army M151 Protector remote weapons stations, which is in common use on Stryker armored vehicles. The Protector can be fitted with machine guns, grenade launchers, Javelin anti-tank guided missiles, and the Hellfire missile.
KVH's FOGs provide optical stabilization and weapon recoil control for RWS units while ensuring that the weapon stays on target whether the vehicle is stationary or on the move.
T U.S. has ordered more than 10,000 remote weapons stations its combat vehicles in a program called the Common Remotely Operated Weapons Station (CROWS) -- a three-axis stabilized mount equipped with a sensor suite and fire-control software that enables on-the-move target acquisition and first-burst target engagement. The current provider of CROWS remote weapon stations is Kongsberg Defence Systems.
Capable of target engagement under day and night conditions, the CROWS sensor suite includes a daytime video camera, thermal camera, and laser rangefinder, all of which are stabilized by KVH FOGs.
KVH supplied the fiber optic gyros to Recon Optical (now EOS Technologies) for the U.S. Army's original CROWS program in 2005, and later won a contract with Kongsberg for the CROWS II program. The U.S. Army has announced a planned CROWS III program that may add an additional 19,000 RWS systems to its inventory.
KVH engineers are working on smaller, lower cost designs they believe will be particularly suited for the CROWS III program. For more information contact KVH Industries online at www.kvh.com.