Metal Storm: Australian Robo-Weaponry
An Australian weapons firm has developed a new piece of combat mecha, in the shadow of a major malfunction by a similar gun-bot.
Brisbane, Australia-based Metal Storm has delivered a four-barrel weapon to the Naval Surface Warfare Center for testing that uses a small electrical current instead a conventional firing pin to deliver stacked rounds at an astounding rate.
How astounding? Try 1 million rounds per minute. That's the rate, by the way, not the volume; still, there's no way you want to be anywhere near the wrong end of one of these puppies.
One version, the Redback, features a remotely operated 40mm that can automatically track targets by slewing around at almost 2 complete revolutions per second, according to the company. "The employment of Metal Storm's stacked round technology for a U.S. military weapon system is a huge step for us," Metal Storm CEO Lee Finniear said in the company's press release.
Sometimes, though, these things can turn on you. When I think "glitch", I think of that scene in Robocop where ED209 wipes out the test: a major malfunction indeed.
"When you are talking about weaponizing robots, there is no margin for error."
Especially at a million rounds per minute.