Develop and Test First Counter to Hypersonic Threats
The US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) has contracted Raytheon Missiles & Defense as one of several companies tasked with development and test of the first interceptor specifically designed to defeat hypersonic threats, the company announced on 19 November. The weapon, named Glide Phase Interceptor (GPI), will defeat the emerging generation of hypersonic missiles.
“Raytheon Technologies’ systems are the cornerstone of today’s ballistic missile defenses. We’re building on that knowledge to advance the missile defense system for future threats,” explained Tay Fitzgerald, VP of Strategic Missile Defense. “GPI’s speed, ability to withstand extreme heat, and maneuverability will make it the first missile designed to engage this advanced threat.”
GPI will intercept hypersonic weapons in the glide phase of flight, when a missile has re-entered the atmosphere and is manoeuvring toward its target. The initial development phase will focus on reducing technical risk, rapidly developing technology, and demonstrating the ability to intercept a hypersonic threat.