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WDS 2024: Belgian company John Cockerill's CPWS could set new standard for future remote weapon systems.

| Defense News Army 2024

At the World Defense Show 2024 (WDS 2024) held in Saudi Arabia, the Belgian manufacturer John Cockerill Defense is showcasing the Cockerill CPWS (Cockerill Protected Weapon Station), a multi-mission, remote-operated weapon station. This product is designed to meet the requirements of modern armed forces, providing a system that supports a range of military operations including fire support, self-protection, and support roles.
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For armament, the John Cockerill's CPWS can accommodate a variety of medium-caliber weapons, ranging from 25x137mm to 30x113mm guns. (Picture source: Army Recognition)

The CPWS is engineered to offer several configurations to suit different operational needs. It includes a fully protected mode for operations conducted from within the vehicle, an elevated mode for manned operations such as observation, surveillance, and sniping, and a fully open mode intended for evacuation scenarios. The system also allows for Operations Other Than War (OOTW) by enabling the removal of the turret for specific mission requirements.

For armament, the CPWS can accommodate a variety of medium-caliber weapons, ranging from 25x137mm to 30x113mm guns. This selection includes the US M242 Bushmaster 25mm chain gun and M230LF 30mm chain gun from Northrop Grumman and the French M811 25mm autocannon by Nexter Systems (formerly GIAT Industries). The CPWS's armament also includes a coaxial 7.62mm gun and turret-launched anti-tank missile systems. Additionally, the CPWS can be outfitted with various additional systems such as 2x4 grenade launchers, adding to its combat capabilities.

The CPWS is compatible with both 4x4 and 6x6 light armored vehicles, featuring a turret constructed from welded ballistic aluminum. A distinctive feature of the turret is its roof design, which allows for the internal reloading of weapon systems, aiming to improve crew protection and sustain operational effectiveness. The ammunition loading system of the CPWS accommodates a single or dual feeder mechanism and can store a total of 155 rounds ready to fire, depending on the type of weapon mounted.

The system's elevation capabilities range from -10° to +60°, facilitating engagement in diverse operational contexts. It incorporates advanced surveillance features, including a bi-modal stabilized high-performance day/night sight system capable of color day vision and thermal imaging for night operations. The sight system enables detection at distances up to 16.8 km, recognition at 8.3 km, and identification at 4.5 km during the day, with a thermal imager providing detection, recognition, and identification ranges of 13.5 km, 6.1 km, and 3.1 km, respectively, at night. The CPWS meets Level 2 STANAG 4569 standards for ballistic protection.

An additional aspect of the CPWS is its aiming system, which allows for panoramic 360° vision for the operator, independent of the turret's orientation. The system ensures that once a target is locked, the gun aligns with the aiming system, with a ballistics computer designed to optimize the hit probability when firing on the move.

In conclusion, the Cockerill CPWS by John Cockerill Defense could represent a significant advancement in the development of a remote-operated weapon station that addresses several operational requirements of contemporary military forces, with a combination of operational flexibility, crew protection, the capacity for effective engagement in a variety of military operations, and enhanced targeting precision and situational awareness.


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