Check out the latest prototypes and cutting-edge firearms on the market (or soon to be)

While you shouldn’t expect to buy a Star Trek phaser anytime soon, gun technology is always inching towards the future with innovations to make shooting more accurate and safer. Here are four innovations in gun technology that will soon be readily available, either to the public or law enforcement. 

Armatix smart pistol

Armatix iP1 Personalized smart pistol. Image courtesy of

Smartgun technology has been around for about 20 years. Its goal is to limit the use of a gun to its authorized user by fingerprint recognition or locking mechanisms. This .22 calibre semi-automatic pistol represents the model that’s closest to being sold commercially. The pistol is paired with a smartwatch that acts as a RFID key that enables its use and prevents anyone else from firing it. The watch also tracks battery strength and shots fired. 

Sales of the Armatix pistol remain blocked by legislation and by ongoing questions about its locking security. Although refinement is needed, smartgun technology may become the standard for firearms in the future. 

Fostech Origin 12 Shotgun

Origin 12 Short Barrel Shotgun. Image courtesy of FosTech.

Marketed as the fastest semi-auto shotgun on the planet, the Fostech Origin 12 Shotgun uses a patented infinite gas system, 3 point operational finger position, and quick change barrel system. The safety, magazine release, bolt release, and trigger can all be operated with one hand. It also has an in-line magazine feed for quick magazine changes. Everything is designed to optimize speed.

The shotgun is perfect for the gun range or self-defence. Keep in mind that while it may fire faster than any other semi-automatic, expect 6-8 months lead time when ordering.

Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS)

Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) program. Image courtesy of Microsoft.

Think “Robocop”. Designed by Microsoft, IVAS is a set of goggles tricked out with the latest mixed reality technology. The headset provides combat soldiers with a variety of displays, including digital night vision, thermal, and day color optics, 3D map and waypoint overlays, plus a picture-in picture display of weapons sights. The weapon is synced to the goggles with a special thermal weapons site mount, which projects the site reticle onto the soldier’s field of view.

After two years of testing, the IVAS is preparing to be used in the field this year. 

Personnel Halting And Stimulation Response (PHASR) Rifle

Personnel halting and stimulation response (PHASR) rifle. Image courtesy of Futurism.

It turns out you CAN buy a Star Trek phaser after all, as long as you’re content to set it to “Stun”. The personnel halting and stimulation response rifle (PHASR) is a prototype non-lethal laser that was developed by the Air Force Research Laboratory, designed to disorient and blind its target. Unlike other military laser weapons, the PHASR’s effect is temporary and therefore permissible under UN guidelines. 

Intended for use by law enforcement and the military, the “PHASR” acronym is a deliberate nod to Star Trek’s phasers, which had a similar non-lethal stun setting.

Innovations in shooting technology continue to make firearms safer and more secure. Who knows – maybe the next innovation will be lasers that emit a force-field or a pistol that shoots spider webs.

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