Waiting for ‘Smart’ Guns


At least a dozen companies are developing “smart” technologies that would make it harder for guns to be fired by children and non-owners, according a report released this week by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ).

Two of the products may be brought to market this year, according to the report.

On January 26, President Barack Obama issued 23 executive actions intended to reduce gun violence. The actions — which came in response to the Newtown, CT rampage in Dec. 2012 that left 28 people dead, including 20 children, six school staffers, the shooter and his mother — included an order for a report on the availability and most effective use of new gun safety technologies.

The report details efforts taken by companies during the last two decades to adapt fingerprint and biometric technologies for gun safety.

Products made by Kodiak Industries and Armatrix GmbH are near market-ready, according to the report. Kodiak's “Intelligun” is a fingerprint-based locking accessory “installed on a model 1911-style .45 caliber handgun that uses a patented design to completely lock the gun from operation when not in use while unlocking it immediately (in a fraction of a second) for authorized users,” according to the report.

The Armatrix “Smart System” consists of “a user-authorized firearm system that consists of an originally designed handgun (iP1) and a wrist-worn transponder (iW1) that is used to authorize the firearm and user.”

While seven relatively small firms complied with NIJ requests for interviews and on-site visits, requests made to some of the nation's most well-known firearms manufacturers were denied, according to the report. Colt's Manufacturing, Smith & Wesson and Sturm, Ruger & Co., were among seven firms that denied meetings with NIJ.

Read the report HERE.

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