Close Combat Symposium 2022

Digitalisation of the battlefield continues at pace

Remote weapons station

Smart Shooter demonstrated the SMASH Hopper remote weapons station. The weapon can be placed on different mounts and controlled from a distance with a tablet.

Smarter sights

On the modern battlefield, sights and sensors are as important as the weapon they are attached to. AI-enhanced sighting systems can highlight threats, integrate with other platforms and assist with training soldiers in shooting accuracy.

24-hour, all-weather capability

Qioptiq demonstrated a number of thermal and fused weapon sights that can be used in the day or at night.

Ultra-light machine guns

FNH UK sponsored the event and had the Evolys Ultra-light Machine Guns in both 7.62 and 5.56 mm plus the family of SCAR Mk2 weapons on the firing point, and delivered presentations on two e-novation products, FN VICTOR and SMARTCORE.

Ashley Franks, FNH UK Sales Manager, said: "Once again the Close Combat Symposium was invaluable for us to understand the authorities' short and long term intent. The range day is an ideal opportunity to network with key stakeholders and gives them the opportunity to fire our latest weapons."

Counter UAS systems

With a growing focus on the threat from uncrewed aerial systems (UAS), Smart Shooter demonstrated its fire control system against mock aerial targets (balloons, for this demonstration) hung beneath a drone. The SMASH 3000 is powered by AI and computer vision and has a ‘drone mode’, allowing it to lock onto, follow and hit moving targets.

Doron Levi, Regional Director B2B & Marketing, Smart Shooter, said: "Smart Shooter's SMASH family of fire control solutions offers a precise and swift capability to counter small unmanned aircraft systems. The SMASH fire control system puts a precision counter-drone capability at the fingertips of its users, featuring built-in targeting algorithms that can track and hit even very small drones at assault rifle ranges (200-300 metres).

"The simplicity and accuracy of SMASH significantly reduces operating costs, training hours, and amount of ammunition to achieve the mission. SMASH is a cost-effective solution that brings all shooters to an expert level of marksmanship – even when countering small drones."

US Army Next Generation Squad Weapon

Edgar Brothers displayed the 6.88 mm SIG XM5, the winning assault rifle submission for the NGSW programme that was launched in the US in 2017 to replace the M4 carbine and M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, which both fire the 5.56 mm round.

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About Symposia at Shrivenham

Symposia provide a forum for the exploration and exchange of experience, ideas and knowledge of technology, management and leadership together with the relevant aspects of security and resilience.

Read more about Cranfield’s Close Combat Symposia in 2023 here.


COTEC performs independent test and evaluation on munitions, weapon systems, pyrotechnic and explosive stores, and conducts disposals and demilitarisation. Its extensive range facilities are also suitable for testing other materials and equipment.

Read more about COTEC here.