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EOS opens new R150 RWS production line

Cyborg Dynamics’ Warfighter Uncrewed Ground Vehicle (UGV) uses EOS Defence’s R150 Remote Weapon Station and is a stable firing platform (top). Images: Cyborg Dynamics

Canberra-based Electro Optic Systems (EOS) has opened its new R150 Remote Weapon System (RWS) production line at its manufacturing facility in Canberra. This is the company’s response to growing international demand for lightweight systems that can be fitted to a wide range of crewed and uncrewed protected and utility vehicles.

An initial batch of fourteen R150 gimbals will be provided to the United States. In 2022 President Biden announced that these systems would subsequently be delivered to Ukraine as part of the US’ military assistance package.

Executive Vice President of EOS Defence Systems, Matt Jones said, “I am proud of the innovative, cutting-edge technology that our local employees in the Canberra region, supported by an Australian supply chain, have developed, which has gained recognition on the world stage.”

The R150 is entirely designed, developed, and manufactured in Australia, he added, and will save Ukrainian lives, meeting an urgent operational need and allowing them to defeat the Russian drone threat from within the safety of their vehicles.

The R150 is light enough to have also been demonstrated aboard Cyborg Dynamics Engineering’s lightweight Warfighter Uncrewed Ground Vehicle (UGV). This uses Cyborg’s own Athena AI system for target evaluation and BIA5’s patented suspension system which enables very high cross-country mobility as well as a stable firing platform.

In manned vehicle applications the R150 allows soldiers to remain secure within their vehicle, reducing their exposure to hostile fire. The company believes it is unique to the market, stabilised, accurate, and with minimal weight. It can mount and fire weapons up to 12.7mm calibre on the move and over long range.

The R150 has been designed and developed in Australia, with a focus on addressing contemporary and emerging threats based on lessons learned in recent conflicts, such as Ukraine. EOS is committed to supporting Ukraine, says Jones. Larger EOS RWS, such as the R400S used by the Australian Defence Force, have already been provided to Ukraine, integrated with the Thales Bushmaster protected mobility vehicle. The R150 and R400S have a common user interface, enabling operators to switch seamlessly between the two systems without requiring additional training.

In April EOS announced the securing of two conditional contracts to supply its industry-leading RWS and related components to Ukraine. These contracts entail a total of up to 150 units, valued at up to $181 million. Additionally in June, EOS secured an additional conditional contract valued at approximately EUR32 million (approximately A$51 million) to supply RWS units to a Western European government. The contract includes spares, training, and related services. To fulfill these contracts, EOS will leverage its extensive support network and supply chain.

Currently, more than 2,500 units have been sold and are in use by several military services across Australia, North America, Europe, and South-East Asia. EOS is Australia’s largest sovereign defence industry exporter, employing approximately 300 staff across Australia, with more than 100 Australian companies in its supply chain.

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