|New device 'no larger than matchbox' Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Office|
IDF develops new navigation system
Device no larger than matchbox will bring soldiers to coordinates they seek by counting steps
IDF soldiers will soon receive outside help navigating on foot, in the form of an electronic system the size of a matchbox.
"We have learned that the navigation systems that exist today – the map and the GPS – do not supply all of our needs, so it was necessary to develop a new system," Lieutenant-Colonel Zalman Adar told Ynet.
The system was developed over the last two years by Elbit and the IDF. Army sources say it does not require satellites or aerial photographs to work.
"The system, which is the size of a matchbox, works by documenting steps or movement," Adar explained.
"Upon first activating the system it must be calibrated according to the soldier, and then given the coordinates of the destination. From the time of departure the system begins calculating the path, whether the soldier is walking, running, crawling, climbing, etc. It doesn't matter if the soldier is tall or short, the path is calculated according to steps."
The navigation device must also be connected to an individual mainframe equipped with a computer screen.
Adar says recent testing has found the system to be efficient, simple, and cheap. "Quite a number of soldiers will be able to use it," he said.
There are a number of other advantages, too. "The system will also afford commanders better control of their troops and minimize instances of friendly fire, because soldiers will always know precisely where they are," Adar said.
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