December 3, 2008 A wearable sniper detection system is to be used by troops in both Iraq and Afghanistan in the US Army’s first large-scale deployment of its type. The Soldier-Wearable Acoustic Targeting System (SWATS) can pinpoint the location of snipers after a single gunshot, audibly informing soldiers of the point of origin.

Part of QinetiQ's Ears Gunshot Localization System family, the 6.4-ounce acoustic sensor takes just a fraction of a second to locate the source of sniper fire. It works in a 360-degree radius, isn't confused by ambient noise and can be used in a moving vehicle.

“The soldiers gave us feedback and we acted on it,” said Don Steinman, Director of Technology Marketing and Transition for QinetiQ North America’s Technology Solutions Group. “The result is a powerful, rugged, and lightweight gunshot localization system that helps the individual warfighter rapidly respond to dangerous situations.”

The success of the system has prompted the US Army’s Rapid Equipping Force to place a $9.9 million order for the soldier-wearable model. The deployment in Iraq and Afghanistan is expected to be complete by early next year.