A high-power microwave and laser system developed by Raytheon downed 45 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) during a U.S. Army exercise at Fort Sill, Okla.

Raytheon's high-power microwave system engaged multiple UAV swarms, downing 33 drones, two and three at a time. The high energy laser (HEL) component identified, tracked, engaged and killed 12 airborne, maneuvering Class I and II UAVs and destroyed six stationary mortar projectiles. The solid-state laser system was mounted on a dune buggy.

The tests were conducted during the Maneuver Fires Integrated Experiment (MFIX) at the U.S. Army Fires Center of Excellence. MFIX brought military and industry leaders together to demonstrate ways to bridge the Army's capability gaps for long-range fire and short-range air defense.

Raytheon received a $2 million contract from the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) to test and demonstrate high-power microwave technology to counter UAVs.

"The speed and low cost per engagement of directed energy is revolutionary in protecting our troops against drones. We have spent decades perfecting the high-power microwave system, which may soon give our military a significant advantage against this proliferating threat." — Thomas Bussing, vice president, Raytheon Advanced Missile Systems


"Our customer needed a solution, and they needed it fast. So, we took what we've learned and combined it with combat-proven components to rapidly deliver a small, self-contained and easily deployed counter-UAV system." — Ben Allison, director of Raytheon's HEL product line


The directed-energy system aims an energy beam at airborne targets, such as drones, making them unable to fly. (U.S. Army photo)