Lt. Gen. Daniel Karbler, commanding general of the U.S. Army’s Space and Missile Defense Command (SMDC), has said SMDC is looking at directed energy weapon systems such as hypersonic missile technology to address future threats on the battlefield.
Karbler and Lt. Gen. James Dickinson, deputy commander of U.S. Space Command, were able to fire a 50-kilowatt laser using an Xbox controller to destroy a target drone, the service branch said Monday. The Army aims to deploy such technology on Stryker armored ground vehicles by 2022 and equip a battery with a ground-based hypersonic weapon the next year.
“We’ve got to be able to address the threats that are out there, that the adversaries have presented,” Karbler said Thursday at an Association of the U.S. Army-hosted forum.
Kord Technologies selected Northrop Grumman and Raytheon last year to develop competing 50kW-class lasers under a $203 million other transaction agreement between Kord and the Army.