US Army Approves Plans for Microwave, Laser and Hypersonic Weapons

The US Army has approved plans for high-powered microwave weapons, laser weapons and the development of hypersonic missiles.

The Army will test a 50-kilowatt laser on an 8×8 Stryker armored vehicle by 2021 and then a 100-kW one on a heavy HEMTT truck.

100-KW lasers on an army truck

Starting in 2021, the Army will test-fire hypersonic weapons twice a year. A fully assembled canister for launching the glide vehicle will be delivered to the first rocket artillery unit so they can train to load and reload the 400-inch long canister on the Transporter Erector Launcher.

The Army’s main modernization priority is an array of Long-Range Precision Firepower weapons, from rocket-propelled, precision-guided howitzer shells to hypersonics firing over 1,000 miles.

SOURCES – Breaking Defense

15 thoughts on “US Army Approves Plans for Microwave, Laser and Hypersonic Weapons”

  1. I was thinking bunkers and underground facilities not missiles. Good luck using a laser to dig through dirt.

  2. Mass?  Good luck using extra heavy missiles just to become more resistance to lasers but more vulnerable to kinetic interceptors..

  3. Just to add, as laser power increases you start to get effects other than direct damage to the targeted munition/craft itself. For example, when targeting a missile moving at high speed the heat from the laser at high powers will introduce a thermal differential which will, in turn, destabilize the aerodynamic profile of the missile which could be enough to cause it to tumble and tear itself apart.

    If the defense counter is to make the missile move slower and have more mass, then it becomes easier to target via conventional means. It’s all a giant game of rock, paper, scissors.

  4. “If the existence of a defense against a weapon system means “they clearly have no idea of what they are doing”, then obviously they clearly have no idea of what they are doing.”

    Which weapon system does not have a defense? Bullets? Missiles? Jets? Bombers? Tanks? Chemical? Biological?

  5. Well, there is one defense: mass. Not much on the surface of Earth would be able to resist one. You can bet there are plans to put some in orbit if they arent there already.

  6. There is no proven existing defense against a 100 Kw laser and much less future megawatt lasers. The more powerful the laser the less possibly of defense against it.

  7. You could park a giant laser on the edge of a battle zone and have drone swarms with mirrors that could request and revector a pulse.

  8. Ultafast femtosecond lasers should be capablle of vaporizing dielectomirrors but they are not ready to deploy. I dont know if the army is even using femtosecond lasers.

  9. If the existence of a defense against a weapon system means “they clearly have no idea of what they are doing”, then obviously they clearly have no idea of what they are doing.

  10. You should consult US military weapons designers because they clearly have no idea of what they are doing.,

  11. Such coatinga make the weapon easier to detect and that is why you use a multi system approach to handle the problem. I will also note that using a laser allows you to upgrade to charged particle beam weapon or plasma weapon using the ionized tunnel created by the laser to allow a secondary form of damage. Also masers allow weapon subsystems to be attacked or jammed as well. Evidently the army has learned its lesson and is not focusing on wonder weapons but a multilayered and multi upgrade path for the future of the army. See the proposed upgrades paths for the Bradley, Abram’s and artillery as indicative of how they are progressing.

  12. It remains to be seen if all this “lasers on the battle” business isn’t just a cartoon.
    I expect defenses such as dielectric mirrored coatings, metamaterials and ablative materials will allow weapon systems to survive long enough to make lasers useless against all but the most primitive adversary.

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