Weapons

US Navy tests its most advanced aircraft carrier by blowing stuff up

US Navy tests its most advanced aircraft carrier by blowing stuff up

The United States Navy is testing whether its latest and greatest aircraft carrier, the USS Gerald R. Ford, is ready to take on the trials of war. To do this, the Navy is detonating explosives near the ship in order to make sure it can handle the kind of events that may be encountered during an actual war. The explosions were strong enough to register as small earthquakes.

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Royal Navy uses AI systems in first test against live supersonic missiles

Royal Navy uses AI systems in first test against live supersonic missiles

For the first time, the UK's Royal Navy is using artificial intelligence in a test against live missiles at sea, providing a look at the future of autonomous systems in the military. The exercise will take place over three weeks and involve testing two systems: Sycoiea and Startle. The Royal Navy says this is the largest test of its kind conducted thus far.

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Bizarre crystal found at world’s first nuclear blast site was made from wires

Bizarre crystal found at world’s first nuclear blast site was made from wires

On July 16, 1945, the US conducted the world's first nuclear bomb test, an event codenamed Trinity. The test took place a couple of hundred miles south of Los Alamos, New Mexico, home of the iconic Los Alamos National Laboratory. That same lab has published a new study on a type of extreme rare crystal called a quasicrystal -- one that was, in this case, formed by the extreme environment caused by the nuclear explosion.

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USAF Reaper drones will get a big update to deal with new type of threat

USAF Reaper drones will get a big update to deal with new type of threat

The United States Air Force (USAF) has announced plans to update its Reaper drones in a way that makes them more capable against 'near-peer' threats. The plan comes from the USAF's Life Cycle Management Center, specifically its MQ-9 Program Office, which explains that the mission behind the drone platform is 'shifting' from one aimed at addressing extremist groups to one that may need to address near-peer threats.

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DARPA taps three companies to develop LongShot UAV missile concept

DARPA taps three companies to develop LongShot UAV missile concept

DARPA has announced the three companies it selected to develop concepts for its LongShot program. The agency didn't reveal the financial details for its selection, but did state that the contracts are for concepts on a UAV that would be launched in the air, after which point the drone would be able to launch its own air-to-air weapons.

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US Army taps BAE Systems for its next-gen missile warning system

US Army taps BAE Systems for its next-gen missile warning system

The United States Army has awarded BAE Systems with a $179 million contract to develop its next-generation Missile Warning System (MWS), the company has announced. Under this contract, BAE Systems will operate under the US Army's Limited Interim Missile Warning System Quick Reaction Capability (LIMWS QRC) program. The company will provide the military with its first two production lots of the LIMWS.

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Turkey’s military drones will bring machine guns to the air

Turkey’s military drones will bring machine guns to the air

They may be mostly considered today as annoying toys but the origin of drones can hardly be considered innocent. Originally used to describe unmanned aerial vehicles or UAVs the size or small planes, drones have become even smaller to the point that consumers could take them around for entertainment or professional photography use. Armed forces around the world, however, are using the same advancement in drone technology to improve their original purpose. Turkey, however, maybe literally taking that to new heights with a drone that comes bearing arms.

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US Air Force receives its first anti-drone laser weapon system

US Air Force receives its first anti-drone laser weapon system

The United States Air Force has received its first anti-drone laser weapon, Raytheon has announced. The company delivered the counter-UAS system earlier this month, marking its completion of the work first revealed earlier this year. The US Air Force plans to test the system over the duration of a year as part of a larger experiment. According to Raytheon, its technology can take down a drone within seconds.

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FAA warns citizens to stop putting weapons and fireworks on drones

FAA warns citizens to stop putting weapons and fireworks on drones

The Federal Aviation Administration really wants the public to stop attaching weapons and fireworks to drones. Officials with the agency published a statement about the matter last week, warning that operating weaponized drones is not only dumb and dangerous but also against the law. Anyone caught flying a drone modified with these items faces a huge fine, something that could snowball into more serious punishment if someone gets hurt.

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USAF’s new THOR weapon can instantly take down drone swarms

USAF’s new THOR weapon can instantly take down drone swarms

The United States Air Force has rapidly developed a new microwave weapon called THOR that can take down swarms of drones, officials have announced. The weapon was unveiled on June 20 by the Air Force Research Laboratory to local reporters who were given a demonstration of THOR in action. The weapon system cost $15 million and was developed in only 18 months.

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USAF’s first AGM-183A hypersonic weapon flight test was a success

USAF’s first AGM-183A hypersonic weapon flight test was a success

The United States Air Force's first flight test of the AGM-183A Air Launched Rapid Response Weapon (ARRW) was a success, officials have announced. The flight test was conducted with a B-52 Stratofortress aircraft at the Edwards Air Force Base on June 12; it involved a prototype version of the hypersonic weapon that featured only sensors.

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US Navy plans to deploy high-energy HELIOS laser on USS Preble in 2021

US Navy plans to deploy high-energy HELIOS laser on USS Preble in 2021

The United States Navy anticipates having its own anti-missile laser in operation by 2021, officials have revealed. The High Energy Laser and Integrated Optical-dazzler with Surveillance system (HELIOS) will be equipped on the USS Preble, a guided missile destroyed based in Hawaii. The timeline was revealed by Rear Adm. Ron Boxall in a recent interview.

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