Raytheon systems deliver a decisive edge on the battlefield
Be stronger than your enemy.
That’s a central tenet of the Pentagon’s Third Offset strategy, which encourages technological innovation to create “overmatch” – overwhelming combat power to either deter adversaries or defeat them outright.
“Our ability to project power…has underwritten global stability and prosperity for decades,” said U.S. Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work in a 2015 speech. Any “perceived inability to achieve a power projection overmatch, or an overmatch in operations, clearly undermines, we think, our ability to deter potential adversaries. And we simply cannot allow that to happen.”
As threats evolve across every domain – air, sea, land, space and cyber – enabling technologies and systems must also progress to give American and allied soldiers the edge they need on the battlefields of today and tomorrow.
One example of that progression is how Raytheon is expanding its range of land warfare systems designed to provide overmatching capabilities, including systems designed for both “mounted” vehicle and “dismounted” infantry land warfare operations.
“Our potential enemies have definitely learned from us,” said Joe Peterson, a retired Army lieutenant general who now leads business development for Raytheon’s land warfare systems business. “When an enemy rocket system can knock out two battalions in a single volley, that capability raises concerns.”
Threats old and new
Beyond futuristic tools and technologies like electronic warfare jammers and proactive hunting for cyber threats, Raytheon is building technologies for the conventional conflicts of the future. The company produces, among other products, weapons and sensors for the majority of the infantry and armored fighting vehicle weapons used by the U.S. and its allies.
Once thought to be obsolete, conventional tank-on-tank warfare and the use of high-end weaponry are plausible for the future.
To allow tank crews to counter incoming threats, Raytheon has developed the Quick Kill™ active protection system. Active protection systems deploy small munitions in the proximity of incoming threats—rocket-propelled grenades, rounds from recoilless anti-tank rifles or guided anti-tank missiles—to destroy them before they hit a tank or armored vehicle.
One example of a combat-proven, overmatch capability already in service is Raytheon's M982 Excalibur® 155mm guided projectile. A true precision weapon, Excalibur hits at a radial miss distance of less than two meters from the target in any weather. This weapon system extends the reach of .39-caliber artillery to 40 kilometers and .52-caliber artillery to more than 50 kilometers.
The Excalibur munition can be fired from multiple types of mobile and towed howitzers. It is in service and on order with the U.S. Army and Marine Corps, Australia, Sweden, Canada, the Netherlands and Jordan, and is being considered by other international partners.
It’s the evolution of the threat that spurs development of new technologies, as potential adversaries seek to narrow the overmatch gap. Adversaries equipped with a combination of conventional weapons, electronic warfare and access-denial cyber capabilities could threaten the overmatch advantage the U.S. and its allies maintain today.
“What we see now is that our enemies have caught up to us. They’ve invested in combat vehicles. They’ve invested in advanced protective systems and active protective systems,” Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, director of the Army’s Capabilities Integration Center, said in recent remarks.
Another of Raytheon’s key systems-level initiatives is to fulfill the U.S. Army’s Long-Range Precision Fires, or LRPF, requirement. Raytheon is developing a new, longer-range weapon based on advanced missile technologies that will allow the Army to field twice as many missiles on its existing launch vehicles. Thin and sleek, it will fire two missiles from a single weapons pod, an innovative and differentiated design that slashes the cost to the customer. The new missile also flies farther, packs more punch and incorporates a superior guidance system than the current weapon, which is becoming obsolete.
Raytheon is also pursuing upgrades to existing fighting and armored vehicles. The Army is embarking on a modernization effort of its Stryker Fighting Vehicles and has begun a fast-track modernization of part of its fleet. Raytheon already provides turrets, sights, sensors and weapons for Stryker, including the TOW® and Javelin anti-armor missiles.
The idea behind these technologies is to give the U.S. and its allies the ability to deter, and whenever necessary, overwhelm an adversary on the battlefield.
"We're not going to be able to pick out one specific strategy that will be good for all potential adversaries and all potential capabilities," Deputy Secretary Work said in his speech. "It has to be much more innovative and agile."