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Defence firm is all at sea but on target off the Bay

TEAM TEST: The crew form Meggitt Defence Systems in Herne Bay
TEAM TEST: The crew form Meggitt Defence Systems in Herne Bay

FORGET computer games featuring high-tech targets — the real thing was being tested off Herne Bay last week. Experts from Meggitt Defence Systems brought the latest versions of their unmanned targets to the seafront on Wednesday for a day of testing and training. The devices are designed for use in the water and in the air and can feed back information about exactly where a bullet hit. David MacLean, trials and field services manager, said:

“We test the system and make sure it is operating as it should. It also means we can train the operators too so they are familiar with it before they have to use it. Because it can detect which vector the bullet went through, we can adjust it so it can have a technical hit without causing too much damage, which would be costly.”

The team have to alert the coastguard and foreshore teams before they begin to avoid the sight of the unmanned ‘boats’ causing concern. Mr MacLean said:

“We have been down a number of times because it is one of the nearest places for us to get to.”

“Like anything, the software is continually updated and improved so we do a full system test before we deploy overseas.”

The latest tests were on behalf of the Dutch Navy.

Herne Bay Times, February 6th 2014

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