An experimental missile powered by a supersonic combustion ramjet inadvertently separated from a Boeing B-52 provider plane and was destroyed, in keeping with a report.
The scramjet missile, which was developed below the joint Protection Superior Analysis Tasks Company and the US Air Force Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Idea program, was destroyed during a latest captive-carry test, sources informed Aviation Week.
Scramjets enable missiles to succeed in hypersonic speeds that enormously exceed the pace of sound, usually reaching Mach 5 and above.
The reason for the accident, which is believed to have concerned an plane from the 419th Flight Test Squadron at Edwards Air Force Base in California, stays below investigation, the information outlet reported.
The Air Force referred Aviation Week to DARPA, however the Division of Protection company declined to supply any particulars.
“Particulars of these flight demonstrations are categorized,” a DARPA spokesman informed the outlet.
The payload could have indifferent from the B-52 in flight over land — probably over a test vary such because the Edwards Precision Influence Vary Space or the close by Naval Air Weapons Station test vary at China Lake, in keeping with Aviation Week.
The HAWC program is already a number of months behind an unique schedule that known as for a primary flight final yr, the outlet reported.
In 2017, DARPA selected Lockheed Martin to develop a HAWC demonstrator powered by an Aerojet Rocketdyne scramjet after it turned down one other design submitted by Raytheon.
However a redesigned Raytheon missile impressed DARPA, resulting in a contract being awarded for a second flight test in March 2019.
The contract to develop the prototype was at a price of $174.7 million, in keeping with Protection.data.