USAF Tests New Raytheon-Made Counter-Drone Laser System

USAF Tests New Raytheon-Made Counter-Drone Laser System
High Energy Laser Weapon System

A test group from the U.S. Air Force has been working on a new directed energy weapon developed by Raytheon Technologies' intelligence and space business to deter enemy unmanned aircraft systems.

The 704th Test Group started testing the High Energy Laser Weapon System 2 or H2 under an experimentation program that began in spring 2020, USAF said Wednesday.

USAF's Strategic Development Planning and Experimentation office managed the project, which fielded commercial off-the-shelf systems at combatant commands over a year.

H2's initial testing phase commenced at the end of July with a week of basic functionality demonstrations.

“The first phase proved that H2 was capable of integrating with a fielded radar and fielded command and control system, and it completed the kill chain by shooting down UASs at operationally-relevant ranges,” said Lt. Col. Jared Rupp, director of the Directed Energy Combined Test Force, which the 704th Test Group belongs to.

The system's second testing phase began in September and had the technology deployed to a combatant command base for operator training and performance assessments.

The test program for a total of five H2 units continues to run, with four systems tested and three already deployed.

You may also be interested in...

Microsoft

Microsoft Azure Government Now Offers 142 Services With FedRAMP’s High Provisional Authorization

Microsoft now has 142 cloud services certified with high provisional authorization to operate under the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program, which aims to standardize the security of cloud products used in the federal government. The company said in a blog post published Thursday its offerings under the Azure Government cloud work to boost the security and compliance of federal agencies.

MCR Federal

MCR Federal Working to Provide Space Force With Modernized C2 Software

MCR Federal secured a contract in May to help the U.S. Space Force implement new command and control software equipped with modernized applications in an effort to replace aging space C2 software tools.

X-57 Maxwell

NASA to Hold High-Voltage Ground Tests for X-57 Electric Aircraft

NASA is slated to conduct ground tests for high-voltage operation of an experimental plane being designed by Empirical Systems Aerospace to help the agency create certification requirements for electric aircraft units.