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Missile Defense

The Lockheed Martin Miniature Hit-to-Kill interceptor roaring off the launcher (Photo: Loc...

The U.S. Army is funding Lockheed Martin to develop hardware and software for the Extended Area Protection and Survivability (EAPS) program. Under this program, Lockheed Martin has conducted the first guided test flight of the Miniature Hit-to-Kill (MHTK) interceptor rocket. The MHTK is designed to defeat incoming rocket, artillery, and mortar fire out to ranges of 3 - 4 km (1.9 - 2.5 miles).  Read More

The High Energy Laser Mobile Demonstrator (HEL MD) that will incorporate a 10-kilowatt sol...

With the solid-state high-energy lasers already being tested on the sea and in the air, Boeing is continuing development of a truck-mounted system. The system is similar in concept to Boeing’s Laser Avenger that is intended for combating unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), but boasts a more powerful laser for countering a wider variety of threats, including rockets, artillery, mortars, as well as UAVs.  Read More

The EKV is the 21st century equivalent of hitting a bullet with a bullet

If you visit the Blue & Gray Museum in Decatur, Alabama, you’ll see a remarkable curiosity – two bullets that collided in midair during a battle in the American Civil War. What does this have to do with ballistic missile defense in the 21st century? Everything, because that's exactly what the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle (EKV) being developed as part of the American Ground Based Interceptor (GBI) missile defense system is intended to do – destroy high-speed ballistic missile warheads in flight by hitting them head on.  Read More

Rheinmetall AG's newly developed Active Defense System (AMAP-ADS) fends off an RPG (Photo:...

Defense supplier Rheinmetall AG's newly developed Active Defense System (AMAP-ADS) is designed to provide an unmatched level of protection to land vehicles through the use of sophisticated threat detection, identification and nullification technology that takes just milliseconds to react. The system, which also minimizes collateral damage around the vehicle, was recently demonstrated under live fire for a group of potential customers who watched unprotected from a distance of 150m.  Read More

A test of a U.S. Harpoon anti-shipping missile (Photo: Jason C. Winn)

Last month U.S. Military, government and industry officials witnessed a demonstration of a new missile warhead casing material at the Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) in Dahlgren, Virginia. The material, known as High-Density Reactive Material (HDRM), is the result of collaboration between the Office of Naval Research (ONR), NSWC Dahlgren and NSWC Indian Head Divisioncan and can be employed within existing designs, but with added destructive power.  Read More

New laser technology could be used to protect military helicopters from heat-seeking missi...

Researchers at the University of Michigan are developing laser systems for protecting military helicopters from heat-seeking missiles. The lasers wouldn’t shoot down the missiles, but would instead jam their sensors, essentially blinding them. This isn’t the first time that laser systems have been used for this purpose, but the creators of this system claim that it is better suited to helicopters than anything that has come before.  Read More

The Airborne laser has succeeded in its first lethal intercept experiment

Laser guns have been a staple of science fiction for decades, but in reality their use is generally restricted to sighting, ranging and targeting applications. But that is all set to change. For the first time an airborne laser (ABL) weapon mounted aboard a modified Boeing 747 has shot down a ballistic missile launched from an at-sea mobile launch platform off the central California coast.  Read More

The Airborne Laser provides speed-of-light capability to knock hostile missiles out of the...

On August 10, Boeing and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency were finally able to demonstrate that the US$1.1 billion Airborne Laser (ABL) program actually works. The ABL aircraft, a modified Boeing 747-400, took off from Edwards Air Force Base and located, tracked and fired on a target missile. Although a surrogate high-energy laser was used – rather than the megawatt-class laser that will ultimately arm it – instrumentation on the target verified the hit.  Read More

The PAC-3 missile is the first hit-to-kill interceptor produced by the USA, and has greatl...

Lockheed Martin and the Japanese Self Defense Force have successfully tested the PAC-3 Missile against a tactical ballistic missile target, at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. The PAC-3 Missile Segment is an upgrade to the Patriot air defense system, and is designed to detect, track, engage and destroy TBMs.  Read More

Airborne Laser
 Photo: USAF Photo by Jim Shryne

Boeing and the US Missile Defense Agency have completed the first laser activation testing for the Airborne Laser missile defense program. The tests involved circulating water through the laser to verify its integrity, before circulating chemicals through the laser to confirm sequencing and control.  Read More

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