It’s a skill that anyone who’s played a first-person shooter like Halo: Reach or Call of Duty: Black Ops relies on: the ability to know where the bullets heading your way originated. Knowing whether an assailant’s above you, behind you, to your right or left can literally save your life. When you’ve got that vital info, you know where to grab cover and what location to return fire to.
Real-world soldiers don’t have built-in radar maps to let them know where the enemy is. But new technology shipping out to active-duty soldiers might give them something close to that. Developed by QinetiQ North America, the Individual Gunshot Detector houses four small sensors that register the supersonic sound waves created when a bullet is fired. The IGD can track the location and distance of the gunshot and display that info on a small screen.
The whole set-up weighs less than two pounds, and 13,000 systems will be shipping out to active-duty troops later this month. From there, about 1,500 units a month will be going into the field. According to Army representatives, future implementations of the IGD plan to have it networked with its Land Warrior and Nett Warrior situational awareness systems, so that squads will know which is taking fire and from where.