Click here to read the National Institute of Justice’s recently released Draft Baseline Specifications for Law Enforcement Service Pistols with Security Technology. There’s a lot of interesting “dumb” requirements.
The new pistol has to be a matt black or dark gray striker-fired handgun with no more than an eight-pound trigger pull, no finger grooves and no external safety. And fire 10k times without failure. A GLOCK basically. As for the electronic component, engadget.com reports that . . .
The security device is to be a permanent part of the pistol, but can include externally worn items such as rings, wristbands or tokens. More than one person can be programmed to operate the gun, and the security device must not alter the normal operation of grasping and firing the pistol, nor increase the time needed to grab, draw from a holster and fire the weapon.
If electromagnetic interference may affect the security device, countermeasure detection tech must also be installed to allow the user to fire the gun “when an attempt to block the authorization process is detected.”
The security device must covertly inform the operator when the gun is ready to fire, and if it uses batteries, the batteries may be rechargeable, but must be replaceable. And if power is running low, the security device must warn the user with sufficient time to safely take action. Finally, if the security device malfunctions, it must default to a state to allow the pistol to fire, and should be designed to be easy to reset or disengage in such cases.
So a government-mandated smart gun — susceptible to jamming — must have a counter-jamming device to defeat electronic interference someone (e.g., the government) may use to render the gun useless. What could possibly go wrong?
engadget.com reckons “it’s nice to see the authorities make strides towards President Obama’s goal of developing advanced gun safety technology.” The NIJ is submitting the draft for public comment so . . . comment.