Following some high-profile failures, US hypersonic testing yields some extremely positive results.
The AGM-183A hypersonic missile test took held on July 12 in the airspace off the US state of California, but the results weren’t made public until the following day. The AGM-183A missile was successfully fired from a B-52 bomber for the second time; the first successful test took place in mid-May after numerous issues or delays because of technical issues.
“The second successful test shows that the Aircraft Launched Rapid Response Weapon (ARRW) is capable of achieving and maintaining hypersonic speeds as well as gathering important data for test launches. confirm the process for a safe disengagement from the aircraft in the future “, Lockheed Martin, a US defence contractor
The US Air Force has finished engine testing, according to General Heath Collins, programme manager for ARRW, and is prepared to enter the full missile test phase later this year.
On the same day, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) of the Pentagon stated that the OpFires hypersonic weapon had successfully completed a test launch in the U.S. state of New Mexico.
A ground-based system called OpFires is designed to be able to “precisely strike an important target in a brief period of time, shielded by a contemporary adversary air defence network.” It has been suggested by the system’s maker, Lockheed Martin, to integrate it with the M142 HIMARS rocket artillery.
Weapons known as hypersonic missiles go at least 6,200 kilometres per hour, or five times the speed of sound. Hypersonic weapons are more deadly and practically impossible to intercept with today’s defensive shields because of their trajectory and speed.
After conceding that it is still behind rivals in terms of hypersonic weaponry, the US Department of Defense is testing a number of hypersonic missile programmes in an effort to catch up with them.
The US Air Force is also testing the Hypersonic Attack Cruise Missile (HACM) and working with DARPA to create the naturally aspirated Hypersonic Weapon in addition to the AGM-183A. (HAWC). Mid-March saw the testing of a HAWC prototype off the American west coast.
To meet their needs, other US agencies are creating hypersonic weapons with various capabilities. The Long Range Hypersonic Weapon (LRHW) and the US Navy’s Conventional Flash Attack (CPS) systems both utilise hypersonic glide vehicles (LRHW).