Air Force uses microwave beam to detonate roadside bombs

MINNEAPOLIS, 19 May 2005. Alliant Techsystems recently teamed with personnel from the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., to develop a high-power microwave capable of defeating multiple targets such as the improvised explosive devices (IEDs) currently threatening U.S. and allied troops in Iraq.

MINNEAPOLIS, 19 May 2005. Alliant Techsystems recently teamed with personnel from the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., to develop a high-power microwave capable of defeating multiple targets such as the improvised explosive devices (IEDs) currently threatening U.S. and allied troops in Iraq.

Under a cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA), the ATK IED team built, tested, and fielded a high powered microwave system that pre-detonated a wide variety of IEDs it encountered in realistic test scenarios, based on U.S. experience in Iraq.

The AFRL specifically cited the team's "superb ingenuity" that led to a first-ever high power microwave system that was ruggedized for transport. According to the AFRL citation, this system demonstrated "the best result to be achieved by any system to date" and it was the team's "breakthrough efforts" that have allowed microwave technology to grab the attention "at the highest levels for the ability to assist the force protection mission."

ATK is a $3.0 billion advanced weapon and space systems company employing approximately 14,000 people in 23 states. For more information, see www.atk.com.

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