New DARPA hypersonic missile prototype test flew 5x the speed of sound

Lockheed Martin has tested a new hypersonic cruise missile prototype for DARPA's Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept program.

Published May 8, 2022 4:11 AM CDT   |   Updated Fri, May 27 2022 5:08 AM CDT
1 minute & 48 seconds read time

The hypersonic missile prototype has been developed by Lockheed Martin for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

New DARPA hypersonic missile prototype test flew 5x the speed of sound 01 | TweakTown.com

The prototype is being developed as part of DARPA's Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC) program. Lockheed Martin's prototype's recent free flight test is the second such test conducted for the program. The first test was conducted in September, 2021, by Raytheon Technologies, according to a DARPA press release.

According to DARPA's latest press release, "air-breathing vehicles utilize air captured from the atmosphere to achieve sustained propulsion." Lockheed Martin's test saw the missile prototype reach and maintain a cruising speed of greater than Mach 5, or over five times the speed of sound, "for an extended period of time." It reached altitudes of over 65,000 feet (12.3 miles, 19.8 kilometers) and flew for more than 300 nautical miles (345 miles, 555.6 kilometers).

"This Lockheed Martin HAWC flight test successfully demonstrated a second design that will allow our warfighters to competitively select the right capabilities to dominate the battlefield. These achievements increase the level of technical maturity for transitioning HAWC to a service program of record," said Andrew "Tippy" Knoedler, HAWC program manager in DARPA's Tactical Technology Office.

"We are still analyzing flight test data, but are confident that we will provide the U.S. Air Force and Navy with excellent options to diversify the technology available for their future missions," Knoedler continued.

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NEWS SOURCES:space.com, darpa.mil

Adam grew up watching his dad play Turok 2 and Age of Empires on a PC in his computer room, and learned a love for video games through him. Adam was always working with computers, which helped build his natural affinity for working with them, leading to him building his own at 14, after taking apart and tinkering with other old computers and tech lying around. Adam has always been very interested in STEM subjects, and is always trying to learn more about the world and the way it works.

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