Tag Archives: military_technology

Missile Defense Agency = Star Wars

missile defense agencyEveryone has heard in the news about how Russia is furious over the US decision to go ahead with implementing a missile defence shield. A major point not emphasized in popular media relevant to these press releases is the shadowy US agency responsible for devising the missile defence plan. Named simply enough, the MDA, or Missile Defence Agency, a department within the Department of Defence, is really the “Star Wars” program, or the Strategic Defence Initiative (SDI) from the Cold War era with a different name. People around the world are saying that the US is still in a “Cold War mentality” and are stoking the Russians into an arms race. They also say that we are uneccessarily upsetting the international community with careless war-mongering. Is the Cold War still happening, are we getting ready for a nuclear war? No, and no.

There really is no “arms race” going on right now, and that is mainly because the US is so far ahead of everyone else that it isn’t even a race. Sea Based xband RadarNeedless to say, technology marches on. Why not develop a system to destroy incoming missiles, no matter where they are coming from? Why not perfect technology to its pinnacle? RadarComparisonBasically, what you hear in the media about the US ballistic missile shield and what not is really just anybody looking to whine outloud from an anti-US/Republican/George Bush/military platform, which many whiners like to do. It really just makes people look foolish to denounce technological capabilities from a partisan standpoint. There is a reason that countries like Poland and Czech Republic agree to the benefits of the missile defence shield; they are not stupid. While they would be taking obvious political concessions to the US for the US to provide cutting edge missile defence technology, we are still their allies. With this system in place, they will likely remain allies for a great time into the future. We are winning people over by bestowing on them great protection and technology, while it beguiles me that so many people voice opposition to this foreign policy. Maybe they think the money could be better spent somewhere else? I wonder if it could, but what are we really buying here with the missile shield? Political and military capital, which will be crucial in the coming years of international turmoil and resource shortages. Fighting poverty with our money, I somehow doubt, will help us in the long run struggle to maintain our elegant lifestyles here in the US. After all, the portion of the missile defence shield to be installed in Europe is only one piece of a multi-layered anti-ballistic missile system that is comprised of the Aegis sea-based ABM system, the THAAD system, the Airborne-Laser, and MEADS. All of which are specialized to engage ballistic missiles at different stages of their trajectory. With the completion of the MDA’s mission, the circle of dominion will be complete.

The pictures in the middle are of the sea-based xband radar, which are deployed around the world to track missiles as they fly through the upper atmosphere. This radar is just one of many that all must be fully functional for the missile defence shield to operate effectively.

MQ9 Reaper – Predator UAV – Iraqi Drone of Death

The MQ9 Reaper
Manufacturer: General Atomics Aeronautical Systems
MQ9 REAPER
–An altitude, endurance, and long-range upgrade to the original Predator UAV


First MQ 9 Reaper at Creech AFB 2007Imagine coming home from a hard day’s work, relaxing on the couch, and busting out your XBOX 360. Instead of playing a video game, you decide it would be nice to unwind while thinking to yourself…”ten seconds to impact”, then witnessing the full-color obliteration of an opportunistic target in Iraq. While this situation is not entirely accurate, it is very close to what US Air Force pilots of tomorrow will be doing on a daily basis as they command the new squadron of MQ9 Reapers set to arrive in Iraq. Controlled–piloted–from a base in Nevada, remote-control airplanes with laser-guided bombs and hellfire missiles attached to them will be raining death from above on anything that might look out of place. In fact, it seems like all the hoopla about the Democratically supported troop “pull out” seems more or less like this–human army out, robot army in. About 60 MQ9s have been ordered by the air force, and they will be flying out of the largest US Air Force base in Iraq, Balad Air Base just outside of Baghdad. Likewise, Balad has begun construction of a 400,000 sq. ft. expansion of the runway to accommodate the staging of the new Reapers. Ultimately, the MQ9 Reaper represents the culmination of about 20 years of R&D, mostly carried out by engineering students working at our nations best research universities. From MIT to Georgia Tech, probably millions of man-hours from our brightest aeronautical, electrical, and mechanical engineering students seeking their doctorates have been, and likely unknowingly, contributing to the final product that represents the forefront of a futuristic military comprised of hunter-killer robots and aircraft. As long as they are used to dominate the world, then I guess that no time has been wasted, not even by reading this article. Have a nice day, and never forget that our people are the most valuable asset we have in America.

See this broadcast by the Air Force on their UAV programs.
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Also check out another MQ9 Reaper post by Joe.

TROPHY – Active Military Vehicle Defense

When armor just isn’t strong enough and munitions keep evolving such as the armor pier cing tandem rpg 27 (two shape charges), “active protection systems” are called upon. Currently in development for the Striker and the Israeli Merkava main battle tank is the TROPHY active protection system which promises to revolutionize military vehicle and armor defense. The U.S is not currently partaking in RAFAEL’s TROPHY weapon system as it has contracted a favorite , Raytheon, to build an equivalent system for its vehicles.

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TROPHY is being produced by RAPHAEL and maintains a 360 degree field of view with its radar. The TROPHY will pick up incoming threats using its radar and do some complicated physics and mathematics to find a bearing of the incoming threat. Once the threat is identified the TROPHY system calculates the best time and angle that it should fire its shotgun-like pellets which repel the incoming threat. The system is also capable of engaging multiple threats simultaneously from different directions.

trophy1

TROPHY is designed to work against all incoming anti-tank missiles and Rocket propelled grenades. Also the ability to fire upon incoming threats on the move gives infantry vehicles and tanks equipped with the TROPHY system the ability to evade the enemy while under attack. Another advantage is that vehicles equipped with the TROPHY weapon system won’t need heavy armor installments that slow them down like explosive reactive armor. The Trophy system may not completely alleviate the need for reactive armor installments as the new “active protection system” is not capable of defending againsty land mines, artillery, ant-tank guns, or IED attacks.

Ballistic Missiles Defeated with Airborne Laser (ABL)

air borne laser

Ballistic missiles may soon become obsolete with the emergence of the YAL-1A Airborne laser (ABL) in service. A modified US air-force Boeing 747-400F has completed several tests that prove its ability to effectively down incoming ballistic missiles before they become a threat. Infrared systems will be able to track the origin and target of a ballistic missile, while the nose mounted turret is responsible for delivering a directive energy laser to take out the fuel tank of a ballistic missile. Ballistic missiles don’t stand a chance of reaching their intended target with the Air-borne Laser in the sky. The video below shows the advances being made in this new military technology which may pave the way for several more directive weapon military applications.

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For more information on directive energy weapons please view the Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser

Railguns – Electric Future Rail Gun – Military Raligun

A technology that will increase the Navy’s capable strike distance by ten fold is on the way. Proposed in the 1970’s under the “star wars” Strategic Defense Initiative, railguns are no longer a thing of the past or just an idea on the drawing boards. The United States Office of Naval Research has successfully fired a Railgun and has plans to incorporate the technology into Naval Ships by the year 2020. The main idea in developing the Railgun is to overcome the limitations of chemical projectiles. The Railgun will deliver projectiles to its intended target much more quickly and with an incredible amount of force. In fact, the force from a Rail Gun will be so intense, warheads will not need to be used. Charles Garnett, the project director, said that the rail gun will be able to take out a building by the time it is put into service.
naval rail gun

Future Railguns will deliver small projectiles (3.2 KG) at immense speeds packing the punch of a Tomahawk cruise missile at a fraction of the price. For once a military technologyn is being created that greatly reduces costs to the Navy. Tomohawk Cruise Missiles can cost a million dollars a piece, while railgun projectiles are estimated to cost only $1000 by the time they are ready for use in 2020. railgun projectileStill 13 years away from actual military use, the railgun has some obstacles yet to overcome. One of the biggest challenges in creating the electronically driven railgun is to find an electronic device that can withstand the hundreds of thousands of G’s that it’s projectile is pulling after being launched from the railgun. With accurate smart weapons prevailing, GPS is becoming a more integral part of US military arsenal and the railgun is pretty useless without it. Developing a device that will shield the railgun projectile’s instruments and GPS sytems at extremely high G-forces is still underway. Similar intsrumentation protection devices have been developed in the Excalibur artillery shell which can withstand up to 16,000 G’s.

General Atomics, a San Diego Defense Contracter was awarded a 10 million dollar contract to produce a railgun. Railgun technology has many benefits such as reducing the time it takes for a projectile to reach its target, reducing the hazard of tank crews carrying explosive rounds, and the reduction in military costs to fire long distance projectiles. Although the railgun is still under development and is years away from service, the abilities of this weapon are pretty incredible, surpassing any projectile technology that we have in our arsenal today

The Main Battle Tank of America – The M1-A1 and M1-A2 Abrams Tank Video

abramstank
Manufacturer: General Dynamics [NYSE: GD]

Some countries excel in the creation of different things. It just so happens that the US excels in the creation of the machines of war. Aside from being the richest country in the world and having the Cold War spurring the development of said military technology, the Abrams tank was truly a revolutionary design when unveiled in the 80s. Despite whatever claims that certain tank exporting countries have about their newly designed next-generation tanks, none of them, aside from a distant second with the British Challenger 2 main battle tank, have been tested as extensively in battle as the M1 Abrams tank. The Abrams tank has constantly been upgraded to withstand the stresses of battle, and when it comes to a main battle tank, you actually want it to last…in battle. Support systems and facilities, repair and maintenance technicians, and myriads of other factors contribute to determining what tank could win against another. Sure other modern MBT tanks have bells and whistles, but none have the serious capability to survive and be retrofitted like the M1-Abrams tank. The M1-A2 MBT is the greatest tank in existence. Also be sure to read about the depleted uranium shells seen in slow motion in the video.

Check out this M1 Abrams tank video. The slow motion segment depicts a fin-guided round shedding it’s skin midflight.

You can see other Abrams tank videos at YouTube.com’s Abrams Tank videos section.

Future Combat Systems Video – FCS – The Future of Firepower

Future Combat Systems - FCS

Generally speaking, every post on this site is dedicated to the newest technology on the battlefield. With a name like futurefirepower.com, what more could you expect than a highlight on the pinnacle of the cutting edge of military technology, the Future Combat Systems program by the United States of America. With each conflict that America has engaged in, endless amounts of studying and testing goes into determining ways to improve the Armed forces. With the Cold War leading to developments that provide massive strategic firepower, smaller conflicts like those in Iraq have helped to spawn a new generation of developments to aide with the precision networking and orchestrating management of US battlefield assets on a more microscopic level. This video highlights the extreme to which the US military is focusing on the digitization of the battlefield, which the end result is to shorten the time that action takes on the battlefield, which all the more overwhelms an opponent.

Check out this Future Combat Systems Video. Other FCS videos, media, and information can be found at the US Army’s Future Combat Systems website.

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Also See: NLOS Cannon

Also See: MULE FCS vehicle