Weapon hailed as a game-changer that can fire up and over barriers and down into trenches
Soldiers will start using them in Afghanistan later this month
The U.S. army is to begin using a futuristic rifle that fires radio-controlled 'smart' bullets in Afghanistan for the first time, it has emerged.
The XM25 rifle uses bullets that are programmed to explode when they have travelled a set distance, allowing enemies to be targeted no matter where they are hiding.
The rifle also has a range of 2,300 feet making it possible to hit targets which are well out of the reach of conventional rifles.
The XM25 is being developed specially for the U.S. army and will be deployed with troops from later this month, it was revealed today.
The rifle's gunsight uses a laser rangefinder to determine the exact distance to the obstruction, after which the soldier can add or subtract up to 3 metres from that distance to enable the bullets to clear the barrier and explode above or beside the target.
Soldiers will be able to use them to target snipers hidden in trenches rather than calling in air strikes.
The 25-millimetre round contains a chip that receives a radio signal from the gunsight as to the precise distance to the target.
Lt. Col. Christopher Lehner, project manager for the system, described the weapon as a ‘game-changer’ that other nations will try and copy.
He expects the Army to buy 12,500 of the XM25 rifles this year, enough for every member of the infantry and special forces.
Lehner told FoxNews: ‘With this weapon system, we take away cover from [enemy targets] forever.
‘Tactics are going to have to be rewritten. The only thing we can see [enemies] being able to do is run away.’
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