Raytheon Technologies has been awarded a contract by the US Department of Defense to develop its Microwave Technology Testbed system for ballistic and hypersonic missile defense.

The $13 million agreement covers a critical design review of the testbed system to help mature the US military’s electromagnetic weapons technologies.

Completing the critical design review would mean that the system can proceed to production, demonstration, and testing, according to a report by Military Aerospace.

It also ensures that the Microwave Technology Testbed meets the military’s performance requirements within cost, schedule, and risk.

Work for the contract will be performed in Arizona and is expected to be finished by 2024.

Microwave Technology Testbed

Raytheon’s Microwave Technology Testbed is designed to test the lethality of various electromagnetic weapons for ballistic and hypersonic missile defense.

It will facilitate the early procurement of long-lead components, which are often difficult and time-consuming to obtain.

With the new contract, the American tech firm will proceed with the system’s baseline design, advanced technology insertion evaluation, and test planning.

Raytheon will also support future integration of the platform.

Investments in Microwave Tech

The contract is among many investments by the US military in high-performance microwave weapons and technologies.

Last month, the US Navy and Air Force wrapped up a five-year joint effort to develop microwave technology that can knock out enemy electronics.

The High-Powered Joint Electromagnetic Non-Kinetic Strike Weapon is capable of penetrating enemy territory and unleashing an electromagnetic pulse to disable electronic devices.

General Dynamics is also collaborating with Epirus to integrate the Leonidas high-power microwave weapon onto Stryker combat vehicles to shoot down drone swarms.

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Combining the capabilities of the armored vehicle and the microwave weapon would reportedly give the military a fully-mobile counter-electronics solution.