US military launches 3 suborbital rockets in test of hypersonic technologies

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China reportedly tested nuclear-capable hypersonic missile in August

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The US military this week launched three suborbital rockets from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.

comes after launch China allegedly tested nuclearCapable hypersonic missile in Aug.

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In a US Navy news releaseThe Navy Strategic Systems Programs (SSP) and the Army Hypersonic Program Office (AHPO) on Wednesday evening “successfully conducted” a high operational tempo for the hypersonics flight mission, the Marine Services Branch said.

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The flight operation, it said, was executed by Sandia National Laboratories – a Contractor to the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)—and will be used to inform the development of the Navy’s conventional quick strike (CPS) and the Army’s long-range hypersonic weapon (LRHW) offensive hypersonic strike capability.

According to the Navy, the test demonstrated advanced hypersonic techniques, capabilities and prototype systems.

In addition, three precision-sounding rocket launches involved “hypersonic experiments including CPS, AHPO, Joint Hypersonic Transition Office, SNL, Johns Hopkins University/Applied Physics Laboratory, MITRE, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and several defense contractors.”

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The tests, the Navy noted, fill “the critical gap between ground testing and full system flight testing” during weapon system development, with launches “continuous and routine to support the rapid maturation of offensive and defensive hypersonic technologies”. Allows for flight test opportunities.”

“This test is a significant step forward in the development of a Navy-designed general hypersonic missile consisting of a common hypersonic glide body (CHGB) and booster, which will be tailored to different weapon systems and launchers by both the Navy and the Army at sea. or ground launch. The Department of Defense (DoD) successfully test-fired the CHGB on March 20, 2020. The Navy and Army will continue to work in close cooperation to take advantage of opportunities for joint testing,” it wrote.

The Navy also highlighted that delivering hypersonic weapons is one of the Defense Department’s “highest priorities” and that the Department is working with industry, government national laboratories and academia to develop “hypersonic warfare capabilities by the mid-2020s”. in the field of” – which includes hypersonic weapons capable of flying at speeds up to five times the speed of sound.

In my own post, NASA wrote That the next rocket launch from Wallops is NASA’s sounding rocket mission targeted for January 2022.

the launches were Visible from the Chesapeake Bay Area, the administration pointed out.

According to Space.comMore than 16,000 sounding rockets—which are launched on shallow trajectories and have the same technology as missiles—have flown from the Wallops Flight Facility since it opened in 1945.


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