Australian Target Systems “ATS” is Australia’s most experienced target systems business, with a history that dates back to the 1950’s. Today, ATS is the dominant provider of full spectrum live fire target systems to the Australian Defence Force, providing design input, systems development, project management, installation and maintenance services. ATS also provides ongoing technical advisory services regarding range management, policy formulation and experimental activities.
ATS is primarily a “target systems integrator”. The ATS approach is based on using the best target equipment available in the world to develop a fully integrated target system that meets the exacting requirements of the marksman. This is achieved by developing a complete understanding of the live fire training objectives first, to ensure the intimate relationship between the marksman and the target forms the core foundation of the range and targetry design process. ATS combine the skills of highly experienced software and hardware engineers and the knowledge of military professionals, to ensure that the technical design elements of the range are matched precisely with the practical elements of marksmanship training. The contribution that ATS has made to Australia’s Defence capability is significant. Every Australian soldier that has ever deployed on active combat operations over the past decade has used target systems installed by ATS.
The original Live Fire Target Systems business commenced operation in Albury in the late 1950’s stemming from the invention of the Automatic Retaliatory Target (“DART”). The business was the first in the world to develop the Projectile Location System (“PLS”), also known as the Automatic Marking System (“AMS”) and Location of Misses And Hits system (“LOMAH”). The business was initially called Australasian Training Aids (“ATA”). In the mid to late 1970’s, subsidiary businesses were registered in the USA and the UK. ATA had several name changes before it eventually became known as Dart Defence Industries. In 1989 the Australian Government-owned Australian Defence Industries (ADI) purchased Dart Defence.
In 1999 the Australian Government sold ADI to a joint venture and on 20 August 2002 Australian Target Systems Pty Ltd “ATS” was formed to provide continuity of projects in Australia and to provide capabilities for design, installation and technical support. Significantly, the key engineers associated with the original business transferred to ATS, bringing their extensive target systems knowledge and expertise.