Drones have become the ubiquitous buzz on the battlefield, their low hum a constant reminder of the ever-evolving face of war. These often cheap, agile attackers rain explosives and capture intel, leaving traditional defenses scrambling.

But a new contender has emerged: ZeroMark, a US startup aiming to turn soldiers’ rifles into “handheld Iron Domes.”

Their secret weapon? Artificial intelligence (AI)-powered aim assistance.

ZeroMark’s system, codenamed “Guardian,” uses sensors to track drones and actuators to adjust a soldier’s aim in real time.

Lidar and electro-optical sensors paint a detailed picture of the battlefield, identifying drones, classifying their type, and even predicting their flight path. This information feeds into a central computer that calculates the perfect trajectory for a bullet to intercept the drone.

Actuators, discreetly integrated into the rifle stock or foregrip, then subtly adjust the soldier’s aim in real time, compensating for factors like bullet drop, windage, and even the soldier’s own adrenaline-induced tremors.

“Our mission is to empower every soldier with a cost-effective, highly portable counter-drone solution that delivers unparalleled performance,” said CEO Joel Anderson, a former engineer with a background in ballistics and robotics, in a statement released late May. “With the support of our investors, we are ready to deploy this critical capability and ensure our defenders maintain a decisive edge on the battlefield.”

In other words, the company is trying to provide soldiers with a computer-powered wingman.