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Start / News and media / News Archive / News archive 2013 / The jumping hand grenade

The jumping hand grenade

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An FMV engineer is behind the biggest news in the hand grenade area since World War I. By both "jumping up" just before it explodes and directing its shrapnel in a cone formation towards the ground, this hand grenade not only minimizes the risk of innocent victims, it also becomes many times more effective against military objectives.

When an ordinary shrapnel hand grenade explodes, half of its shrapnel goes into the ground to no tactical use. The other half goes into the air, spreading in all directions creating unnecessary danger to a third party. Only a few fragments have the chance to hit the target, provided that the target is not behind some small obstruction. In this case the grenade has no effect.

"Regular grenades do not fulfill their purpose. They are an unnecessary danger to innocent people, and generally are not able to reach their targets", says Ian Kinley, technical expert in specialized munitions at FMV.

Instead, Ian Kinley's solution is based on the grenade suspending itself in the air before exploding.

"Because it can propel itself upwards, it does not only reach targets located behind obstacles. This advanced technology also means that the grenade "knows" up from down. This allows us to aim the shrapnel downwards, in an area of five meters from where it hits the ground", says Ian Kinley.

By concentrating the effect into a cone formation under the grenade rather than spreading the shrapnel spherically, the cluster density increases several times. In this case the target is struck from above, over a larger area, with heightened cluster density. This increases the likelihood that the target receives a direct hit. No splinters go sideways, which dramatically reduces the risk to any bystanders.

"In addition, we have incorporated an additional safety feature that slows the shrapnel down and makes it harmless to innocent people".

The effect is achieved because the shrapnel is designed to slow itself down the farther from the grenade it travels. At 30 meters normal clothes are enough to serve as protection. Conventional grenades can seriously harm people who are much farther away from the explosion than that.

Basically Ian Kinley's work is to continuously find the most effective solutions at the lowest costs. Since the Blast Grenade 07 is so much more efficient than regular hand grenades, the soldiers need a smaller number. This not only provides better cost effectiveness and simpler logistics, it also means reduced training requirements.

"Anyone can manufacture expensive things and get them to work – that's not the challenge. The challenge is to keep it simple. With the "jumping" hand grenade, we have really just given it a new shape and added some new pyrotechnics in a smart way. It is an inexpensive way to achieve a whole new capability".

The result - the greatest change within hand grenades since the First World War - and a world patent for FMV.


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Published: 2013-07-09 14:15. Changed: 2013-07-09 14:19. Responsible: Show e-mail address.