Smarter Weapons Define United States Military Weapons Systems
Military weapons systems in the United States have developed a rapidly in the last few decades, but never so much as they have since the United States entered into a state of war with Iraq following their attacks on American soil on September 11, 2001. Military weapons have developed in all avenues, including land systems, naval combat systems, space systems, intelligence, nuclear, and missile systems. One of the newest missiles being developed is a high-speed strike missile.
The HyStrike is geared to be a hypersonic military weapons system that will be ready for widespread use by 2012. The missile is designed to fly at speeds over Mach 4 and has the capability of targeting and hitting underground targets beyond a 10-meter depth. The missile has no fans but can alter flight direction utilizing a bending body joint. The missile, developed by the Office of Naval Research, is literally taking warfare into the 21st century.
The physics behind the design uses the power developed by kinetic energy. Further development of missile systems is heading toward hypersonic focus. Developed using titanium and inconel (highly oxidation and corrosion resistant) materials that are designed for use in extreme environments, the missile may reach 1,200 to 2,800°F as it passes through the lower atmosphere. Range of this missile can reach over 700 nautical miles, while its average speed ranges between Mach 3.5 to Mach 7, or roughly between 2,600 and 5,200 mph. The weapon can penetrate up to 36 feet of concrete and be used I daytime, nighttime, and in bad weather conditions. This hypersonic cruise missile may be launched from shipboard or submarine.
Military weapons are also designed to transport troopers quickly and efficiently. In the “old” days, C-140s and C-141s and Chinook-type helicopters did the trick. Today however, the V22 Osprey transports troops much faster than traditional helicopters can. Designed to operate with limited runway space, the V22 Osprey is used by the United States Marine Corps. The tilt rotor aircraft has combined the positive features of a vertical takeoff helicopter with the speed and few refueling potential of traditional airplanes. Unlike helicopters, the V22 Osprey can reach 316 mph. Use of the V22 Osprey enables Marines to be transported to shorelines quickly and in force.
Research and development to improve body armor has produced tactical vests that have been issued to soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. Adjustable side plate carriers, meshed linings to help with ventilation, increased mobility and decreased profile of the vest is designed to protect ground troops from and metal fragments.
From rocket propelled grenade launchers to cruise missiles to smart bombs and dirty bombs, military weapons have developed at an advanced rate faster than any other period in history. One of the newer weapon developments of the United States military has been the massive ordnance air burst bomb (aka MOAB), still one of the largest and most deadly types of bomb ever created. Handheld missile launchers as well as missile launching hardware can use missiles with names like Sidewinder, Patriot, and Stinger.
Troop transport carriers like the US Army’s Stryker vehicle is a far cry from the Sherman tanks used in World War II. Military robots, infantry uniforms that are designed and developed with advanced communications and ballistic protection within the fabric offers the 21st century soldier more protection than ever before.
From Apache helicopters to Black Hawks to F-15s and Stealth bombers, United States military weapons continue to advance and develop into awesome displays of power. Modern warfare has developed in step with technological advances and will continue to do so in our ever-changing environment.