Weapons

Aborted test at least shows America’s latest weapon explodes

Aborted test at least shows America’s latest weapon explodes

The US military's latest test of the Advanced Hypersonic Weapon ended with a premature bang this week, with officials having to hit the self-destruct button just four seconds after blast-off. Though designed to travel at around five times the speed of sound to take out any target in the world, as part of the US government's pledge to improve tactical defense after 9/11, the missile and its three-stage booster rocket only proved a danger to the launch facility in Alaska, which it fell back down onto.

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The real Ender’s Game: DARPA kids testing tomorrow’s MIL-TEC

The real Ender’s Game: DARPA kids testing tomorrow’s MIL-TEC

A new report into DARPA-funded research draws deep connections between computer games for children and advanced military software, a modern day Ender's Game using STEM to improve US soldier training. These aren't pre-teens inadvertently directing fleets of starships to destroy alien planets, though, with the kids instead said to be unknowingly helping develop software which will train military personnel on things like avoiding counter-insurgency and pacifying occupied territories.

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Marines to test drone-killing laser Humvees by 2016

Marines to test drone-killing laser Humvees by 2016

Military Humvees with lasers capable of shooting down drones should be ready for field-testing by 2016, preparing for a new age of warfare where unmanned, remotely-controlled weapons platforms attack from the skies. The Ground-Based Air Defense Directed Energy On-the-Move program (GBAD) aims to equip US Marines with highly portable anti-drone weapon systems, significantly miniaturized versus the lasers the US Navy will test on battleships later this year.

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US Navy deploying railguns and lasers (with no sharks in sight)

US Navy deploying railguns and lasers (with no sharks in sight)

The US Navy will begin in-the-wild trials of a laser weapon that can bring down aircraft or small vessels this summer, controlled just like a video game and costing about $1 a shot. The technology will be deployed initially on the USS Ponce, an amphibious transport dock in the Persian Gulf, rather than mounted to a shark's head, the Navy confirmed, and is part of R&D weaponry trials that also include railguns.

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UK police discover 3-D gun printing factory

UK police discover 3-D gun printing factory

Police officers in Manchester conducted a raid recently on what they call the first 3-D printed gun factory. During the raid, officers discovered a 3-D printer they believe criminals were using to try and make a 3-D printed gun. The raid was conducted Thursday and the officers seized the printer and other components they believe was being used in the manufacture of firearms.

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US Army to deploy remote-controlled robotic infantry in the field within 5 years?

US Army to deploy remote-controlled robotic infantry in the field within 5 years?

The US Army could incorporate armed robots in the field within the next five years, according to a report by Computerworld. A recent demonstration at Fort Benning by four robotics companies showed mechanized infantry eliminating targets from 150 meters away. Military strategists were satisfied with the demonstration. As Lt. Col. Willie Smith put it: "We were pleased with what we saw here. The technology is getting to be where it needs to be."

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