This post is also available in: עברית (Hebrew)
One of the core pillars on which the warrior’s profession is based upon is always being aware of the state of their weapon. This element is deeply ingrained in the DNA of any firearm handler, whether a military, police or civil weapon user. In a life-threatening scenario that often occurs at the battlefield, the combatant is challenged by a malfunction in his weapon and has to manually analyze the situation and find a way to fix the problem during the battle. He lacks important data and doesn’t have sufficient attention as he is preoccupied with his own survivability. The major traditional defense industries do not offer adequate solutions to these situations with firearms.
Toref (predator), an innovative startup that participates the iHLS Security Accelerator, offers a groundbreaking solution to this challenge, turning the weapon from merely a metal tool without any transmission capabilities into a smart system that identifies malfunctions in advance and reports weapon performance in real-time.
David Horesh, the founder and CEO, developed the idea following insights drawn from an incident in the IDF special unit Rimon he had served in: During a heated firefight, a soldier’s weapon malfunctioned repeatedly, with great risk to his life. He had to cope with the dilemma whether to seek cover as his officer was commanding him to do or to attend to his weapon, so hopefully, he would be able to return fire. What happened next resulted in a medal – not only did he rectify the weapon repeatedly throughout the battle, but he also succeeded in ending the firefight. However, the risk in such situations is great.
David, who is very much familiar with the defense sector, decided to turn firearms into a digital tool. Toref’s solution is a smart sensor system which incorporates the data relevant from the firearm’s mechanisms during battle or training, in order to enhance warriors awareness to the weapon’s status. The data appears on a screen between the combatant and the sight, directly in his line of sight. The screen is mounted on the rifle’s Picatinny Rail, enabling the combatant to see results in real-time just as in a running watch during training.
Moreover, the data is collected and stored for later analysis via an App or Dashboard. This way, the technology supplies retrospect analysis capabilities on several levels: By the soldier himself, by the instructor during training, and even by the commanders regarding the performance of the soldiers as individuals and as a battalion (big data).
While most of the current solutions transmit only data regarding the number of rounds left, Toref’s unique platform supplies, for the first time, a vast array of data such as malfunctions, shooting direction, training statistics and more. All in real-time and on one screen.
This product will eventually be directed to the military, law enforcement, and first responder markets. It is suitable for training in urban or open areas. At this stage, the company is focusing on long weapons – assault rifles, and machine-guns. At a later stage, they intend to widen the scope to the pistol field.
According to David Horesh, the company is currently checking with manufacturers of sights and weapons the possibility of an integration of the solution. At the same time, it is examining the option of marketing the technology as a separate product for the weapon market.
He concludes: If the weapon of that same soldier in the firefight was equipped with Toref’s smart system, the risk to his life would have been minimized, and maybe the weapon malfunctions would have been prevented from the start. The possibility of receiving the “complete picture” of firearm capabilities in complex situations is a huge advantage that will save lives.