The United States Air Force has announced that it has successfully completed a test this weekend of its air-launched hypersonic rapid response missile (ARRW).
“A United States Air Force B-52H Stratofortress successfully delivered an AGM-183A Air-Launched Rapid Response Weapon, or ARRW, off the coast of Southern California on May 14,” the United States Air Force said in a press release.
“After separation from the aircraft, the ARRW’s booster ignited and burned for the expected duration, reaching hypersonic speeds five times the speed of sound,” it added.
Lieutenant Colonel Michael Jungquist, commander of the 419th FLTS, said the test team made sure the test was carried out flawlessly.
“Our highly skilled team has made history with this first air-launched hypersonic weapon. We are doing everything we can to get this groundbreaking weapon to the war fighter as soon as possible,” he said.
According to the press statement, ARRW is designed to enable the US to endanger fixed, high-value, time-sensitive targets in contested environments from remote ranges. It will also expand precision attack capabilities by enabling rapid response strikes against heavily defended land targets.
This comes after the AUKUS alliance, which includes the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia, announced plans to collaborate on the development of high-speed weapons. The US, China and Russia are among the top countries at the forefront of hypersonic weapons, whose speed and maneuverability make it difficult to detect and intercept.
The US had previously tested a hypersonic missile in mid-March.