The U.S. Army is choosing a durable high-tech laser weapon system that will provide lethal capabilities to unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and rockets, artillery, and mortars (RAM). It is reported that as a leader in emerging technologies, the US Army is deploying a new generation of combat capabilities to advance its multi-domain operations and break the deadlock. This is most obvious in the field of directed energy. In the field of directed energy, the Army integrated lasers on the platform within 24 months and produced the first combat-capable prototype.
Laser weapons are lethal to unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and rockets, artillery, and mortars (RAM), and can now improve the Army’s air and missile defense capabilities, while reducing the life cycle cost of the entire system by reducing logistical requirements. This summer, the U.S. Army’s Office of Rapid Capabilities and Critical Technology (RCCTO), together with the air defense and missile defense cross-functional team, the Firepower Center of Excellence, and the U.S. Army Test and Evaluation Command, brought Stryker equipped with laser equipment to Fort Sill. As part of the DE M-SHORAD system. In order to protect itself from the threat of drones, RCCTO will deliver an air defense combat platoon consisting of four Stryker vehicles equipped with laser equipment before fiscal 2022.
At present, the U.S. military has mastered the world’s most cutting-edge technology, which is its gateway to the future and the first practical application of laser weapons in the U.S. Army’s mobile forces. In combat shooting, Stryker faced many realistic situations that were designed for the first time in the Army to establish the required characteristics for the future DE-SHORAD system. It is reported that the US scientific research team is building and providing a brand new capability. This is not a modification or upgrade. It took only 24 months for the government and scientific research team to design, integrate and prepare it to run at the right time.
The DEM-SHORAD prototype is part of the Army’s larger air and missile defense modernization strategy. The combat shooting test phase ended at the end of July. Soldiers were trained to be proficient in operating new defensive weapons, using the most advanced immersive technology to quickly familiarize them with the DE-M-SHORAD system.
Within a few days, they began to operate the system, demonstrating their proficiency in target acquisition, target selection, and target strikes. The soldier-centered design runs through the entire prototyping process and emerges in a unique way. For example, when training is required, soldiers operating the system recommend using a commercial game controller as an improvement to the standard controller.
They used Stryker’s 3D model on a handheld device so that they could operate virtually in the system in X-ray mode, dissecting parts and debris. This instruction also provides online training manuals, measurement and dimensions, and interactive modules for the system.
The climax of combat shooting is the soldiers performing a series of vignettes designed to simulate realistic threats and combat scenarios. The DE M-SHORAD weapon system demonstrated the design features and performance standards developed for the project, representing an important step in the timely completion of the prototype in FY22 actual combat.
Dr. Craig Robin, deputy director of the RCCTO DE Project Office, said: “This event marks an important milestone and is a good example of rapid prototyping.” For the first time, we deployed a machine on the shooting range. Combat capable lasers are used to counter real threats. We know this will not be perfect, but we will continue to work with soldiers to incorporate their feedback and lessons learned from this assessment into the design to help inform future directed energy systems. “In order to solve the support and infrastructure issues around the prototype laser, RCCTO utilizes a unique stakeholder forum called Octagon. This comprehensive stakeholder group includes people from doctrine, organization, training, materials, leadership, personnel, facilities, and Representatives of all aspects of the policy. The team works in parallel with prototype development to ensure that the correct elements are ready when the prototype is delivered.