MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) on Friday turned over a fully-automated weapon station, known as "Project Buhawi", to the Philippine Navy in efforts to improve the firing capability of the country's naval ships.
Buhawi, which means "Building a universal mount for heavy barrel automated weapon integration", is armed with a 0.50 calibre heavy barrel machine gun. The project hurdled through a series of land-based and sea trials before the hand-over to the Navy.
"This is one of the project's we've worked on, and I'm happy hearing the feedback from our partner, the Philippine Navy. We're turning over Buhawi now," DOST Secretary Fortunato Dela Pena said during the Navy's 124th anniversary.
The automated weapon system aims to reduce casualties of military personnel during combat and help the country become self-reliant in manufacturing its own arms, according to Lieutenant Commander Jimmy Lemana Jr.
"The Buhawi weapon system is better in terms of accuracy compared to similar weapon systems that we acquired through our modernization," Lemana said in an information video aired during the event.
He believes that the Buhawi weapon system has a chance to become a fixture in every naval ship in the future.
The project was funded by both the Science Department and the Navy. The Mechatronics and Robotics Society of the Philippines also worked with both agencies to complete Buhawi.