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On 29 November Elbit Systems announced the launch of HattoriX, a new man-packed fire support system that for the first time enables Forward Observers (FO) and similarly tasked tactical teams to passively, rapidly and independently acquire Category 1 (CAT-1) targets, with a target location error of only a few metres. Operational with an undisclosed client, HattoriX introduces a step change in the effectiveness of target acquisition at the tactical level, as it demonstrably both improves survivability and increases the effectiveness of engaging Time Sensitive Targets (TST), while reducing collateral damage.

Recent conflict highlights two major deficiencies that erode the operational effectiveness of target acquisition at the tactical level. The prevalence of laser detection devices makes it alarmingly easier for the enemy to spot and attack target acquisition teams that use emitter-based fire support systems; additionally, the long process presently required to acquire CAT-1 targets impedes engagement of TSTs and negatively affects accuracy, as it involves complex calculation in the field and relies on higher echelons for validation and integration of C2 information. Elbit Systems’ HattoriX remedies both deficiencies, enabling safe and rapid acquisition of CAT-1 targets at the tactical level.

Featuring a payload agnostic mission computer that runs proprietary software, a photogrammetry algorithm and an augmented reality (AR) overlay of real-time C2 data, HattoriX performs automatic fusion of geographical information system (GIS) data, pre-loaded targets data, payload visual feed and C2 information, thereby enabling the tactical user to intuitively issue CAT-1 targets without using any emitters, and seamlessly feed acquired targets and additional target information (image, video, description) into any battle management system.

Interfacing with any user-specified electro-optical payload, HattoriX comprises a goniometer, a mission computer, a touch-screen display unit and a lightweight tripod. It also includes a remote-controlled configuration for extended force protection. Operators are able to designate targets with a single click on the touch-screen display. Users include FOs, Forward Air Controllers (FAC), Joint Terminal Attack Controllers (JTAC), reconnaissance teams, field intelligence and special forces.

HattoriX is already in service with the armed forces of an unspecified nation. (Photo: Elbit Systems)

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