DARPA’s Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance (EXACTO) program, which developed a self-steering bullet to increase hit rates for difficult, long-distance shots, completed in February its most successful round of live-fire tests to date.
An experienced shooter using the technology demonstration system repeatedly hit moving and evading targets. Additionally, a novice shooter using the system for the first time hit a moving target.
This video shows EXACTO rounds maneuvering in flight to hit targets that are moving and accelerating. EXACTO’s specially designed ammunition and real-time optical guidance system help track and direct projectiles to their targets by compensating for weather, wind, target movement and other factors that can impede successful hits.
“True to DARPA’s mission, EXACTO has demonstrated what was once thought impossible: the continuous guidance of a small-caliber bullet to target,” said Jerome Dunn, DARPA program manager. “This live-fire demonstration from a standard rifle showed that EXACTO is able to hit moving and evading targets with extreme accuracy at sniper ranges unachievable with traditional rounds.
Fitting EXACTO’s guidance capabilities into a small .50-caliber size is a major breakthrough and opens the door to what could be possible in future guided projectiles across all calibers.”
The EXACTO program developed new approaches and advanced capabilities to improve the range and accuracy of sniper systems beyond the current state of the art.
The program sought to improve sniper effectiveness and enhance troop safety by allowing greater shooter standoff range and reduction in target engagement timelines.