DARPA’s hypersonic weapons move closer to free-flight testing

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Defense News points out an earlier report that one of the weapons was destroyed during a captive carry test, but DARPA said those results were classified. According to today’s announcement, both variants have successfully completed captive carry tests.

Next up is testing that focuses on “ hydrocarbon scramjet-powered propulsion and thermal management techniques to enable prolonged hypersonic cruise, in addition to affordable system designs and manufacturing approaches.” Program manager Andrew Knoedler said in a statement that “These tests provide us a large measure of confidence – already well informed by years of simulation and wind tunnel work – that gives us faith the unique design path we embarked on will provide unmatched capability to US forces.”

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