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Oh my God, the Marines have a laser now
Brace yourselves: Marine grunts now have their hands on a drone-killing laser cannon.
Marines are currently evaluating a Compact Laser Weapons System (CLaWS) as "the first ground-based laser approved by the Department of Defense for use by warfighters on the ground," Marine Corps Systems Command announced on Wednesday.
Unlike the Army's vehicle-mounted directed energy system, the CLaWS is "not intended to be a standalone system," according to MARCORSYSCOM, but the prototype will "serve as a component to an overall system" designed for counter-drone operations downrange.
"This was all in response to a need for counter unmanned aerial systems to take down drones," Ground Based Air Defense (GBAD) program manager Don Kelley said in the MARCORSYSCOM release. "We're providing CLaWS to Marines as a rapid prototype for evaluation ... Depending on the results, CLaWS could become part of a larger capability set."
While it's unclear when, exactly, Marines might see a CLaWS-inspired system in their arsenal, but MARCOSYSCOM says that the GBAD program was a testament to the effectiveness of the Pentagon's Defense Ordnance Technology Consortium in rapid technology development and prototyping.
"The typical acquisition timeline can be lengthy," GBAD product manager Lt. Col. Ho Lee said in a release. "But this project, from start to finish—from when we awarded the DOTC contract, to getting all the integration complete, all the testing complete, getting the Marines trained, and getting the systems ready to deploy—took about one year."
The news of the CLaWs prototype comes as the Army says it plans on fielding combat vehicle-mounted lasers and hypersonic missiles within the next four years to counter potential Russian or Chinese drones downrange.
Since March 2018, artillery soldiers with the 2nd Cavalry Regiment have been training with specially-modified Stryker Infantry Carrier Vehicles outfitted with a Mobile Experimental High Energy Laser system at the Grafenwoehr Training Area in Germany.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Documents from the Pentagon show that "far more taxpayer funds" were spent by the U.S. military on overnight stays at a Trump resort in Scotland than previously known, two Democratic lawmakers said on Wednesday, as they demanded more evidence from the Defense Department as part of their investigation.
In a letter to Defense Secretary Mark Esper, the heads of the House of Representatives Oversight Committee and one of it subcommittees said that while initial reports indicated that only one U.S. military crew had stayed at President Donald Trump's Turnberry resort southeast of Glasgow, the Pentagon had now turned over data indicating "more than three dozen separate stays" since Trump moved into the White House.
QUANTICO, Va. -- Marines who spend much of their day lifting hefty ammunition or moving pallets full of gear could soon get a helping hand.
The Marine Corps is close to signing a deal to test an exoskeleton prototype that can help a single person move as much as several leathernecks combined.
The Air Force is working on a ‘flying car’ to replace the V-22 Osprey — and it could take flight sooner than you think
'Agility Prime' sounds like a revolutionary new video streaming service, or a parkour-themed workout regimen, or Transformers-inspired niche porno venture.
But no, it's the name of the Air Force's nascent effort to replace the V-22 Osprey with a militarized flying car — and it's set to take off sooner than you think.
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