Army ramps-up advanced weapons development: to test truck-mounted hypersonic and laser weapons by 2022

Army leaders say they plan to test conventional deployable truck- and Stryker-mounted hypersonic and laser weapons in the field as early as 2022.

Hypersonic 6 June 2019

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Army announced it will test a hypersonic weapon in 2020. Space Daily reports. Continue reading original article

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

6 June 2019 -- In addition to the prototype hypersonic weapon, the Army plans to field combat vehicles with 50-kilowatt lasers on them sometime in 2022, Pentagon officials told reporters on June 4.

Lt. Gen. Neil Thurgood of the Army's Rapid Capabilities and Critical Technologies Office (RCCTO) announced on Tuesday that RCCTO also will field a four-vehicle battery of Stryker combat vehicles with 50-kilowatt laser weapons by 2022.

The hypersonic weapon -- the term denotes a speed many times that of sound but typically it refers to Mach 5, or five times the speed of sound or higher -- involves a "glide body" launched from a 30-foot device, called a transporter erector launcher, carried by four tactical trucks. The glide body is under development at the Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico.

Related: Military eyes prototype megawatt-class laser weapon for ballistic missile defense in next seven years

Related: Lockheed Aculight developing prototype high-power laser weapons to help defend tactical aircraft

Related: Major threats: why U.S. 2020 defense budget massively pushes hypersonic weapons

John Keller, chief editor
Military & Aerospace Electronics

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