DN - Defence Notes

Raytheon wins DARPA TBG contract modification

4th May 2015 - 13:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded Raytheon a contract modification for the Tactical Boost Glide (TBG) programme, it was announced on 29 April.

Under the contract modification worth $20.49 million, Raytheon will develop and demonstrate the technology to enable air-launched hypersonic boost glide systems. Once fielded, TBG could fly faster than Mach 5 and at altitudes of nearly 200,000ft.

Hypersonic weapons would be difficult to intercept, and would enable warfighters to strike targets at long range much more quickly than current missile technology allows. 

Tom Bussing, vice president of advanced missile systems, Raytheon, said: 'Hypersonics is the new frontier of missile design and development.

'The extreme environments where these advanced missiles must operate present significant engineering challenges. Our extensive experience and expertise in developing advanced guided weapon systems uniquely position Raytheon to help solve these problems and deliver these solutions.'

To achieve the required speeds, the re-entry vehicles would be designed to skip across the inside of Earth's upper atmosphere before descending on their targets. The new missiles would have to withstand intense heat while remaining highly manoeuvrable, and would require sensor packages to engage moving or re-locatable targets.

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