A new “diversionary device” is a total redesign of the traditional flashbang stun grenade. Designed to stun and disorient, the Enhanced Diversionary device is computer-controlled, safer, and more effective than traditional flashbangs.
“Flashbang” grenades became popular in the 1970s, as a result of a sharp increase in aircraft hijackings and other terrorist incidents. Flashbangs were designed to look and feel like regular fragmentation hand grenades but produce a bright flash and thunderous noise, stunning anyone within effective range. This would allow a SWAT team, for example, to detonate one on a passenger jet in close proximity to hostages with minimal chance of death or injury.
Still, traditional flashbangs have occasionally injured and even killed people. They can also cause fires, creating a whole new problem in a crisis. A new grenade by Liberty Dynamic, the , promises to be both safer and more effective by employing an entirely different explosive system.
Unlike flashbangs, in which the explosive element is within the body of the grenade and explodes outward, the EDD disperses a cloud of combustible aluminum outside the grenade body. This is similar to fuel air explosive weapons, which disperse a flammable mist outside the body of the munition before detonating. The aluminum then ignites, creating a thunderous noise and flash of up to 184 decibels and nine million candela.
The EDD is also safer, storing the explosive mixture separately, in two different sections, combining them only after the grenade is set to go off. The grenade’s rectangular design--unlike the cylindrical design of legacy flashbangs, means it won’t roll away from the target, like under a sofa where the explosion will be muffled, or back towards the team that threw it.
The use of electronics, instead of a conventional grenade fuse gives the EDD leg up on flashbangs in several ways. The timer is configurable and precise, eliminating the variability of existing grenades. The grenade’s electronics also allow for the binary filler storage system. Finally, if the grenade fails to go off, it disables itself after 60 seconds.