Raytheon’s advanced high-power microwave and laser equipped dune buggy shot down 45 unmanned aerial vehicles and drones at the recent US Army Maneuver Fires Integrated Experiment (MFIX) exercise, according to the company.
Military and industry leaders gathered at MFIX event held at the U.S. Army Fires Center of Excellence in Fort Sill, Oklahoma to demonstrate ways to bridge the Army’s capability gaps in long-range fires and manoeuvre short-range air defence. Highlights, says Raytheon, included:
- Raytheon’s high-power microwave system engaged multiple UAV swarms, downing 33 drones, two and three at a time.
- Raytheon’s high energy laser, or HEL, system identified, tracked, engaged and downed 12 airborne, maneuvering Class I and II UAVs, and destroyed six stationary mortar projectiles.
“The speed and low cost per engagement of directed energy is revolutionary in protecting our troops against drones,” said Dr. Thomas Bussing, Raytheon Advanced Missile Systems vice president. “We have spent decades perfecting the high-power microwave system, which may soon give our military a significant advantage against this proliferating threat.”
Raytheon and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory worked together under a USD2 million contract to test and demonstrate high-power microwave, counter-UAV technologies.
(Image: This is the Raytheon laser dune buggy, a solid-state laser combined with an advanced variant of the company’s Multi-Spectral Targeting System of sensors, installed on a small, all-terrain Polaris militarized vehicle. Coupled with a generator, the HEL weapon system provides military members with counter-UAV capabilities and a virtually unlimited magazine. (U.S. Army photo)