An intriguing video has lately emerged, showcasing an extraordinary creation housed in a garage: a downsized reproduction of the Mk 15 Phalanx Shut-In Weapon System (CIWS) able to firing airsoft BB gun pellets at a exceptional fee. Constructed by Kogoro Kurata, CEO of Japan-based robotics firm Suidobashi Heavy Trade, this scaled-down Phalanx is nothing wanting spectacular.
Within the video, the miniaturized Phalanx, mounted on a pickup truck, takes purpose at a goal made out of heavy paper materials. The BB gun pellets discharged from the airsoft Phalanx swiftly bisect the goal, leaving little doubt about its placing effectiveness.
The genuine Mk 15 Phalanx CIWS, manufactured by Raytheon, is armed with a variant of the famend M61 Vulcan 20mm cannon and boasts an awe-inspiring firing fee of 4,500 rounds per minute. Initially developed as a ship-based protection system, the Phalanx has been employed by the U.S. Navy since 1980 to guard vessels from threats resembling cruise missiles and plane.
Variants of the Phalanx are utilized by naval forces worldwide, together with the Japan Maritime Self-Protection Forces. Moreover, a land-based iteration named Centurion was launched in 2004 to counter incoming rockets and mortar rounds in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Experience in robotics
Kurata’s experience in robotics, coupled along with his prior accomplishment of making the four-meter-tall Kuratas robotic prototype, has led to the creation of this exceptional airsoft Phalanx.
The Kuratas robotic gained widespread recognition after collaborating in a 2017 Megabots robotic battle, in the end rising because the victor. Notably, the Kuratas robots — which additionally shoot BB gun pellets — might be customized ordered for about $1.35 million.
For the airsoft Phalanx, Kurata integrated a CAW Minigun manufactured by Craft Apple Works primarily based in Japan. The CAW Minigun bears a powerful resemblance to the M134 Minigun used within the precise Phalanx. The airsoft Phalanx’s dome, which homes the mannequin’s search and monitoring radars, serves as a reservoir for round 900,000 airsoft BB pellets.
Standing at roughly 2.3 meters (simply over 7.5 ft) in top, together with its pedestal, this miniature model masterfully captures the essence of the actual Phalanx system.
Resuming the plan: the COVID-19 pandemic obtained in the best way
Kurata’s journey to develop the airsoft Phalanx confronted preliminary setbacks as a result of COVID-19 pandemic. Nevertheless, he lately resumed his work, diligently documenting the varied levels of completion on his Twitter account. The development course of concerned assembling the core construction, putting in the CAW Minigun, and integrating hydraulic methods for rotational and vertical motion.
Moreover, Kurata ensured the mannequin carefully resembled the genuine CIWS by incorporating a digital camera harking back to the side-mounted Ahead Wanting Infrared (FLIR) digital camera discovered within the Block 1B variant of the Phalanx.
With the airsoft Phalanx now proudly mounted on the again of a pickup truck, Kurata hints at forthcoming trials of its capabilities in a “wider place” through his Twitter account. This thrilling prospect ignites curiosity in regards to the mannequin’s potential purposes and its efficiency in numerous settings.
Whereas the actual Phalanx holds a particular place in widespread tradition, typically drawing comparisons to fictional characters like Minions and R2-D2, Kurata’s airsoft model stands as a unprecedented achievement in its personal proper. As we eagerly anticipate additional updates, it would undoubtedly proceed to captivate and astonish with its ongoing shows of ingenuity and technical prowess.
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