What originally started out as a shot counter to help the United States Army solve its maintenance issues with the M4, now offers enhanced functionality in situational awareness.
The problem with managing weapon systems, particularly shoulder fired individual soldier systems, is quite simply that there are no systematic ways of optimizing service intervals, or life cycle management. When should a barrel be replaced, or how about recoil buffers and ejectors? Manufacturers know how often that maintenance should take place but the armorer has no systematic way of determining when those service dictating parameters are met. So, what happens? Well, you either change the part or component prematurely in an effort to be proactive; adding to cost. Or, you wait for the weapon to fail; then you have a “reliability” problem or a dead soldier.
FN’s SmartCore provides a transparent and automatic way of collecting that data, but in its latest rendition it also communicates to C² that a firefight has begun, how the firefight was conducted and how many rounds were expended. The data is seamlessly transmitted using the soldier’s situational awareness tools.