Northrop Grumman and Epirus partnered to develop Leonidas, an innovative High Power Microwave (HPM) system designed to protect Forward Operating Bases, fixed sites, and maneuver forces against hostile
Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS). It features novel digital beamforming, which means Leonidas’ directed energy beam can sweep through entire volumes of airspace at digital speeds, thus creating a forcefield-like effect or precisely target a single system. Read more for a short video and additional information.
Fairchild Republic’s A-10 Thunderbolt II, a single-seat, twin turbofan engine, straight wing jet aircraft, may have entered service for the United States Air Force (USAF) in 1976, but it remains one of the most durable yet to this day. In addition to being able to survive direct hits from armor-piercing and high-explosive projectiles up to 23 mm, it boasts double-redundant hydraulic flight systems, and a mechanical system as a back up if hydraulics are lost. Read more for two videos and additional information.
Photo credit: Pavel Kuzmichev / RBTH
JSC Kalashnikov Concern’s MP-155 Ultima is claimed to be the first Russian-made smart shotgun, and recently made its debut at the DEX 2021 International Defence Exhibition in Abu Dhabi. At first glance, this appears to be something straight from a video game, with a reflex sight, high-resolution screen that tracks your shooting and how much ammunition you have left, as well as smartphone syncing capabilities. Read more for a video and additional information.
DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) and the US Air Force have successfully completed captive carry tests of two hypersonic weapon variants from Lockheed Martin and Raytheon. These scramjet-powered hypersonic missiles are part of the Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC) program capable of sustaining flights in excess of five times the speed of sound. Read more for two videos and additional information.
The Backyard Scientist has been known for some crazy experiments, but his latest one might top them all. Simply put, he mounted a 200-watt laser onto the roof of his car and pointed it at random things, including Queen Elizabeth. He initially set out to find a Ford F-350 with a 50-kilowatt laser attachment, but that was a fruitless task. Read more for the video and additional information.
Leatherman’s Skeletool CX is a lightweight multitool perfect for any everyday carry bag, and it’s being offered for just $69.95 shipped, today only, originally $103.04. Some of its features include needlenose / regular pliers, hard / regular wire cutters, 154cm knife, carabiner/bottle opener, and a large bit driver. Product page. Read more for a hands-on video review and additional information.
US Secretary of Defense Mark T. Esper released a statement claiming that China is manufacturing and selling weaponized drones to the Middle East, while it prepares to export its next generation stealth UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles]. Chinese weapons manufacturers are also selling drones advertised as capable of full autonomy, including the capability of conducting lethal targeted strikes. Read more for a video and additional information.
Russia’s defense ministry showcased its latest unmanned aerial vehicle for the first time in public on Wednesday. The Okhotnik (Russian for Hunter) was seen taking off, performing tactical maneuvers and landing after the 20 minute demonstration. This wedge-shaped combat drone was developed by the Sukhoi company and is a major leap compared to other unmanned aerial vehicles previously developed in Russia. Read more for a video and additional information.
Marines aboard the U.S. Navy’s USS Boxer used a new directed energy weapon, called “MRZR LMADIS” (Light Marine Air Defense Integrated System) mounted on a Polaris MRZR vehicle to take down an Iranian drone that came within a thousand yards. It’s the “first known kill by a new generation of electronic warfare and directed energy weapons” by the US, according to USNI News. Read more for a video and additional information.
The U.S. Navy has plans to integrate a railgun with a range of over 16 km onto a ship in the next 5-years, and this weapon, while having a form factor more typical of a naval gun, will utilize hyper-velocity rounds weighing 23-pounds, are 18-inches, and fired at Mach 7. The ultimate goal is to develop self-guided projectiles, and the Navy is projecting each round to cost around $25,000 each. There are currently some high velocity projectiles developed by the Navy that have command guidance, but their accuracy is unknown, nor it can survive a full power shot. There are only two Zumwalt-class destroyers (DDG-1000 series) that can produce enough electrical power to get the desired performance, generating 78 megawatts of power. Read more for two additional videos and additional information.