Hypersonic Developments

kato

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
Quick question: Anyone got some news on the current state of SHEFEX-III, i.e. the next German hypersonic glide experiment?

Last I heard - from Brazilian sources - was that the flight was postponed to 2019, with the implied suggestion that the reason for the postponing was the unavailability of the VLM-1 launcher. SHEFEX, while notionally a civilian experiment (and a development path towards a orbiter), bears close similarity to military projects of other countries, with the last test flight including a Mach 10-11 glide over 800 km distance to a preprogrammed target point. SHEFEX-III is supposed to go to Mach 17 with a crossrange of a few thousand km.
 

hairyman

Member
A few years ago a Queensland University (I think), had produced a hypersonic rocket, and the good old USA offered to help the University out. I have never heard anything further re the rockets development. Has anyone else?
 

hairyman

Member
Well it is good to see development is still ongoing. I wonder if its first use will be defence related, or civil commercial.
 

vonnoobie

Well-Known Member
Well it is good to see development is still ongoing. I wonder if its first use will be defence related, or civil commercial.
Hard to tell, 2 years ago would have said commercial as that industry has been kicking massive goals and pushing the boundaries far beyond what government was willing to do in the time frame (Thanks SpaceX and others) however with 2 nut jobs in charge of America and North Korea and not much better people running China and Russia military may end up rushing such a thing into service. I imagine if they spot some one fueling a rocket being able to strike it before launch (depending on rocket type and launch time) would be very sought after capability.

At present I'd say 50/50 but leaning closer to military.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
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Would aerospace have ever gotten off the ground without the military tit to feed off?
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
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After Putin's hyping about Russian advances in hypersonic weapons, AW has this article about US progress regarding hypersonic efforts. IMHO both countries should be more concerned with Chinese progress, China can actually afford the development costs and they seem to be making substantial progress as well. Even if all three countries develop working systems, China's ability to fund a decent inventory of these weapons is better.

U.S. Hypersonic Weapons ‘Coming’ As Putin Touts Russia’s Lead
 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
Putin claims that Russia has a hypersonic weapon operational already. And it's carrier is the MiG-31BM, which combines a fast carrier with a hypersonic weapon. It now makes more sense as to why the VVS kept the MiG-31 around and even upgraded the fleet. I'll post some of the footage provided when I get home today.
 

Feanor

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Staff member

barney41

Member
The US has various initiatives to develop hypersonic weapons tech though details are scarce. The contract award to LM for HCSW prototyping would hope to speed up the development cycle. HCSW is intended to be launched from a fighter, perhaps even from a F-35 internal weapons bay. If so, the combination of a LO launch platform and a hypersonic missile will not provide much time for a defensive response.

Lockheed Martin Gets $928 Million Hypersonic Missile Contract


The Air Force has picked Lockheed Martin Space of Huntsville, Ala. to prototype the Hypersonic Conventional Strike Weapon under a contract valued at $928 million.

The service said the effort, known as HCSW, which Air Force officials said is pronounced “Hacksaw,” is “one of two hypersonic weapon prototyping efforts being pursued by the Air Force to accelerate hypersonics research and development. The Air Force is using prototyping to explore the art-of-the-possible and to advance these technologies to a capability as soon as possible.” The weapon would be air-launched.

“We won’t be able to say much more on this,” said an Air Force spokeswoman, due to the classification of the program and USAF’s recent move to keep mum in light of the “great power competition” with Russia and China and its desire to restrict potentially useful operational information.

The other hypersonics missile effort USAF is pursuing is the “Air-Launched Rapid Response Weapon,” (ARRW), also known as “Arrow.” Additionally, the Air Force Research Lab is pursuing hypersonic concepts. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is pursuing both a Tactical Boost-Glide (TBG) concept as well as the Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC), which is largely being funded by the Air Force. The Navy has its own hypersonic weapon programs underway.
 
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John Fedup

The Bunker Group
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Certainly these programs should be accelerated. Should be some good synergy with the forthcoming B-21. Also, on another thread, both RR and Boeing have made significant investments in the U.K. Based company Reaction Engines.
 
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