Well, well this business of “Smart Guns” is back again. For those who are not familiar with this subject I have a memory jogger for you. This first came up 14 or 15 years ago as an idea to prevent an LEO from being shot with his own firearm. Then and now the idea is a good one but the technology is not yet available. So the concept was pushed with the LEO being exempt from mandatory use of the concept. That has gone over like a lead balloon. If it is not good enough for LEOs it is not good enough for me.
Are Smart Guns the Answer to America’s Gun Problem?
By Mike Brunker & Kristin Donnelly
April 29, 2016
A few teasers from the linked article with my comments.
If we can set it up so you can’t unlock your phone unless you’ve got the right fingerprint," Obama said in January as he unveiled executive actions on gun control, "why can’t we do the same thing for our guns?
Reliability and speed of operation come to mind very quickly. Just a minute Mr. Badguy while I take my gloves off so my sidearm will recognize me. To me this is not a good situation for an LEO or me or you to be in. Reliability so far fails miserably - This article mentions the Armatix contraption that attempts were made to market a couple of years ago. How nice that the article fails to mention that published data then showed something on the order of failing to fire about 10% of the time. Do not know if that has been corrected or not.
Gun safety advocates say the technology is promising, but needs more research to ensure it actually works. However, federal agencies stepping up and committing to research and to test-driving the technology to make sure it works is a big step forward, gun control advocates say.
Looks to me that people are confusing the safety of a firearm with the misuse of a firearm.
Advocates point to a string of horrific accidental shootings involving children, something they say smart gun technology could address.
Mark Barden, founder of Sandy Hook Promise, lost his son Daniel in the Newtown shooting.
<<snip Mark Barden, founder of Sandy Hook Promise, lost his son Daniel in the Newtown shooting. Mark Barden, founder of Sandy Hook Promise, lost his son Daniel in the Newtown shooting.
Barden says the technology is already out there. It’s crucial to get the technology tested on a firearm, he said. He hopes through testing, people will develop a comfort level with the new technology.
“We have the opportunity to save lives,” Barden said.
Rest assured that I have sympathy for Mr. Barden for his lose but Sandy Hook did not involve firearm safety and “smart gun” technology would not have changed anything there.
As some of you may remember I have previously posted a list of what I consider the minimum specifications for the technology to comply with a requirement that the electronic controls built into the firearm meet the reliability performance that the firearm itself meets. Here they are again for the newcomer and drive-by readers.
Must be usable in either hand.
Must not be affected by calluses, abrasions, lacerations, or other tissue damage or variations.
Must not be affected by authorized user wearing gloves.
Must not significantly increase bulk or weight of firearm.
Must be easy to add and delete authorized users.
Must be serviceable by local store/gunsmith rather than returned to factory when malfunctioning.
Must be capable of correct functioning in temperature range of –50F to +150F.
Must not be disabled by immersion in water.
Must be immune to intense magnetic fields found in some industrial situations.
Must be immune to the effects of magnetic fields under electrical transmission lines.
Must be immune to the effects of authorized user standing adjacent to transmitting radio antenna.
Must be immune to the effects of authorized user being near microwave transmissions.
Must be immune to the effects of NMP and EMP.
Must not be affected by dirt, precipitation, oils, solvents, or perspiration
Must be immune to a 1 meter drop onto cement floor.
Must be immune to the effects of firing recoil for a minimum of 25,000 shots.
Must be designed to use commonly available batteries.
Must not deplete battery life in less than 12 hours of continuous use.
Must not be easily bypassed.
Must have extremely low rates of false negatives and false positives.
Must cycle on in less than 0.075 seconds. (Be useable on demand of authorized user.)
Must cycle off in less than 0.5 seconds. (Be unusable quickly when the authorized user is not holding.)
Must not emit remotely visible or audible indication of functional status.
To date I have seen nothing that indicates the designers are trying to meet any performance requirements that approximate real field conditions.