Raytheon Intelligence & Space (RI&S), a Raytheon Technologies business, delivered the next high-energy laser weapon system to the U.S. Air Force. It will be deployed overseas for operator training and experimental testing and evaluation. Following the completion of the Directed Energy Weapon Initial Operational Employment Review and Approval Process, High Energy Laser Weapon System (HELWS) is now certified for use in combat.
«HELWS builds directly on the feedback we received from operators in the field», said Annabel Flores, vice president of Electronic Warfare Systems at RI&S. «We’ve made the system more rugged. We improved its accuracy and overall efficiency based on real-world lessons learned in an operational environment».
This system features a number of improvements, including ruggedized enhancements to ensure transportability and survivability in a wide range of operational environments; a new beam director for more accurate targeting; and a robust power system for additional magazine depth – the ability to fire the laser for a longer period of time.
«You can take down dozens of drones on a single charge», said Flores. «And if you are plugged into a generator, you have deep, rechargeable magazines».
Mounted on a Polaris MRZR all-terrain vehicle, HELWS uses a variant of RI&S’ Multi-spectral Targeting System, an electro-optical/infrared sensor that detects, identifies and tracks unmanned aerial threats.
A prior version of HELWS was deployed in a forward operating environment earlier this year and recently passed 1,000 hours of operations. RI&S is contracted to deliver another further improved system to the Air Force later this year.
September 1, 2020, DARPA and the U.S. Air Force (USAF) announced successful completion of captive carry tests of two variants of the Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC) and are ready to proceed to first free-flight testing within the calendar year. The joint Agency and Service effort seeks to develop and demonstrate critical technologies to enable an effective and affordable air-launched hypersonic cruise missile.
HAWC performers Lockheed Martin and Raytheon Technologies have each tested advanced air vehicle configurations that promise to achieve and sustain efficient hypersonic flight. Their upcoming flight tests will focus on hydrocarbon scramjet-powered propulsion and thermal management techniques to enable prolonged hypersonic cruise, in addition to affordable system designs and manufacturing approaches.
«Completing the captive carry series of tests demonstrates both HAWC designs are ready for free flight», said Andrew «Tippy» Knoedler, HAWC program manager in DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office. «These tests provide us a large measure of confidence – already well informed by years of simulation and wind tunnel work – that gives us faith the unique design path we embarked on will provide unmatched capability to U.S. forces».
The HAWC program, since inception, has been executed as a joint program between DARPA and the USAF. In addition, DARPA is working in cooperation with military services and agencies, including the Missile Defense Agency, U.S. Navy, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to validate, and eventually transition key technologies. The extensive flight data collected is intended to increase the confidence in air-breathing hypersonic systems and reduce the risks to potential future acquisition programs across the U.S. government.
Raytheon Missiles & Defense, a Raytheon Technologies business, and RAFAEL Advanced Defense Systems Ltd., an Israeli-based defense technology company, have signed a joint venture to establish an Iron Dome Weapon System production facility in the United States. The new partnership, called Raytheon RAFAEL Area Protection Systems, anticipates finalizing a site location before the end of the year.
«This will be the first Iron Dome all-up-round facility outside of Israel, and it will help the U.S. Department of Defense and allies across the globe obtain the system for defense of their service members and critical infrastructure», said Raytheon Missiles & Defense Systems’ Sam Deneke, vice president of Land Warfare & Air Defense business execution.
The new facility will produce both the Iron Dome Weapon System, which consists of the Tamir interceptor and launcher, and the SkyHunter missile, a U.S. derivative of Tamir. Both Tamir and SkyHunter intercept incoming cruise missiles, unmanned aerial systems and short-range targets such as rockets, artillery, mortars and other aerial threats.
«We are excited about this new stage in our partnership with Raytheon and proud of our U.S. production», said Brigadier General (res.) Pini Yungman, executive vice president for Air and Missile Defense of RAFAEL Advanced Defense Systems. «We have long partnered on U.S. production of Iron Dome and are pleased to increase manufacturing and bring SkyHunter to the U.S».
Raytheon Missiles & Defense and RAFAEL have teamed for over a decade on Iron Dome, the world’s most-used system with more than 2,500 operational intercepts and a success rate exceeding 90 percent.
Raytheon Missiles & Defense, a Raytheon Technologies business, delivered the first AN/SPY-6(V)1 radar array for installation on the future USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125), the U.S. Navy’s first Flight III guided-missile destroyer. The SPY-6 family of radars performs simultaneous air, missile and surface defense on seven types of U.S. Navy ships.
«SPY-6 will change how the Navy conducts surface fleet operations», said Captain Jason Hall, program manager for Above-Water Sensors for the U.S. Navy’s Program Executive Office for Integrated Warfare Systems. «Our ships will be able to see farther, react quicker and defend against threats in a way we couldn’t before».
The 14′ × 14’/4.27 m × 4.27 m modular array was transported by truck from the company’s automated 30,000-square-foot/2,787 square-meter Radar Development Facility in Andover, Massachusetts, to Huntington Ingalls Industries shipyard in Pascagoula, Mississippi.
«This is the start of what will be a steady stream of SPY-6 array deliveries to the shipyard», said Kim Ernzen, vice president of Naval Power at Raytheon Missiles & Defense. «Threats to Navy ships are getting smaller and faster. SPY-6 will extend the Navy’s reach against dangers like drones, ballistic missiles, aircraft and unmanned ships».
The SPY-6(V) family of radars delivers significantly greater range, increased accuracy, greater resistance to environmental and man-made electronic clutter, advanced electronic protection, and higher reliability than currently deployed radars.
Raytheon Intelligence & Space (RI&S), a Raytheon Technologies business, will build two prototype sensor payloads for DARPA’s Blackjack program, under a $37M contract. Blackjack is a low Earth orbit satellite constellation program that aims to develop and demonstrate the critical elements for persistent global coverage against a range of advanced threats. It seeks to track multiple threats simultaneously for faster and earlier warning for national security.
«Constellations offer built-in resiliency – strength in numbers», said Wallis Laughrey, Space & Command and Control communication (C2) Systems lead for Raytheon Intelligence & Space. «The entire network of satellites can continue to operate uninterrupted, even if one drops off».
RI&S is reducing integration timelines for rapid deployment, having completed Blackjack’s preliminary design review in October 2019. During preliminary design review, RI&S engaged with major subcontractors to confirm costs and ensure the team would be ready to go to production. The company is leveraging its advanced manufacturing capabilities, fast-production and commercial space programs to deliver the two sensors.
«Blackjack is innovative in its simplicity», said Laughrey. «We’ve incorporated mature tech like advanced algorithms and optics that allow us to go fast, but from day one, our primary design driver was manufacturing for cost».
RI&S’ Blackjack production will support the team for the constellation’s autonomous mission management system, Pit Boss. Pit Boss interconnects all of the data from the Blackjack satellite constellation, acting as the collection and processing hub to deliver data to the right person at the right time.
The RI&S contract goes through critical design review and support to the systems integrator for integration with Pit Boss and the space vehicle. It also includes launch campaign support and the on-orbit demonstration. Following Critical Design Review (CDR) in November 2020, DARPA has the option to order an additional eight or 18 sensor payloads.
Raytheon Intelligence & Space, a Raytheon Technologies business delivered the first production unit of the Joint Precision Approach and Landing System, or JPALS, to the U.S. Navy 20 days ahead of schedule. This delivery follows the completion of 12 engineering development models. JPALS, a differential GPS precision landing system, guides aircraft onto carriers and amphibious assault ships in all weather and surface conditions and is integrated on the F-35.
«Landing a 15-ton fighter jet flying at hundreds of knots per hour on an aircraft carrier in rolling seas is daunting to say the least», says Matt Gilligan, vice president, Raytheon Intelligence & Space. «JPALS makes those landings simpler, safer and more precise. JPALS gives the Navy the landing accuracy it needs every time regardless of conditions. It is more than an approach and landing system – it is a safety system».
JPALS uses an encrypted datalink to connect software and receiver hardware on the aircraft to an array of GPS sensors, mast-mounted antennas and shipboard equipment, to provide surveillance, ship-relative navigation and precision approach and landing in and around the carrier-controlled airspace.
Applications for JPALS extend beyond the seas. The system has the potential to help expeditionary forces land manned and unmanned aircraft safely in any condition, anywhere. An expeditionary JPALS (eJPALS) could be used for special operations missions or guiding aircraft during humanitarian relief efforts. eJPALS would provide straight, curved and multi-segmented precision approach capabilities and has the capacity to support up to 50 different approaches to touchdown points within a 20-nautical-mile radius of the system.
Raytheon Missiles & Defense, a business of Raytheon Technologies, has begun the first phase of developing the XM1155 Extended-Range Artillery Projectile under a $7.9 million U.S. Army Other Transaction Agreement (OTA) through the Combat Capabilities Development Command Armaments Center at Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey. The new, cannon-launched, ramjet-powered artillery round will double the U.S. military’s range to greater than 100 kilometers/62 miles, delivering precision strikes in all terrain and weather conditions.
Raytheon Missiles & Defense is teamed with Nederlandse Organisatie voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek, or TNO, an organization based in the Netherlands that will design the ramjet engine. Raytheon Missiles & Defense will integrate the engine with the system’s airframe, seeker, warhead and other components.
«The ramjet-powered artillery round will allow our nation’s military to strike farther and faster than anything our adversaries have in their arsenals», said Tom Laliberty, vice president of Land Warfare & Air Defense.
The tactical 155-mm XM1155 will be able to strike moving and stationary high-value targets on land and at sea. The maneuverable, extended-range airframe will be compatible with legacy and future 155-mm artillery systems.
The XM1155 builds on Raytheon Missiles & Defense’s experience with guided projectiles, including the Excalibur munition, an extended-range weapon that can engage targets precisely at all ranges and in adverse weather.
This effort was sponsored by the U.S. government under the DoD Ordnance Technology Consortium OTA (W15QKN-18-9-1008) with the National Armaments Consortium. The U.S. government is authorized to reproduce and distribute reprints for government purposes notwithstanding any copyright notation herein.
The U.S. Air Force announced plans to continue with Raytheon Missiles & Defense, a business of Raytheon Technologies, on the development of the Long-Range Standoff Weapon (LRSO), a strategic weapon that will replace the service’s legacy Air-Launched Cruise Missile.
«LRSO will be a critical contributor to the air-launched portion of America’s nuclear triad», said Wes Kremer, president of Raytheon Missiles and Defense. «Providing a modernized capability to the U.S. Air Force will strengthen our nation’s deterrence posture».
In 2017, the U.S. Air Force awarded Raytheon and Lockheed Martin contracts for the Technology Maturation and Risk Reduction phase of the program. The Raytheon Missiles & Defense LRSO team recently passed its preliminary design review and is on track to complete the Technology Maturation and Risk Reduction (TMRR) phase of the Defense Acquisition process by January 2022.
Contract negotiations for the engineering and manufacturing development phase, with a strong focus on schedule realism, affordability, and cost-capability trades, will start in Fiscal Year 2021. The contract award is anticipated in FY22.