Army to test directed-energy CUAS platforms, others in fall experiment

By Ashley Tressel / February 12, 2019 at 1:23 PM

The Army is supporting the Air Force's search for an off-the-shelf, directed-energy platform to counter unmanned aircraft systems by testing proposed systems in a massive experimentation event at Ft. Sill, OK, in late October.

The Air Force will invite four to six contractors to participate in the Army's annual Maneuver and Fires Integration Experiment, or MFIX, at Ft. Sill from Oct. 28 to Nov. 7, where the Army will provide range support, transport equipment and UAS targets, according to a recent notice.

The Army at “MFIX 20” will test a range of technologies the service's Fires Battle Laboratory is interested in, with a focus this year on “available network connectivity and situational awareness differences” at two levels -- “below maneuver brigade” and “maneuver brigade and higher.”

The goal of the event is to “accelerate investments on contested future capabilities in support of Force 2025 Maneuver and beyond,” the notice states.

Specific technologies the Army is seeking to test include a wheeled, self-propelled field artillery platform that has a 155 mm howitzer; command-and-control systems for mobile short-range air defense vehicles and field artillery that can send electronic warfare data; and rocket- or cannon-deployed intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capability.