The U.S. Navy‘s Naval Air Systems Command has designed a lightweight guided missile to be launched from a ship or a drone, as well as to work as a shoulder-fired weapon, Military Times reported Sunday.
Meghann Myers writes NAVAIR’s Spike rocket weighs 5 pounds, measures 2.5 inches in diameter and costs approximately $50,000 to develop.
“We’ve started looking at, with miniaturization of electronics, what does that mean to weaponry? How small can we make weapons and keep them effective against the targets that we’re talking about?,” Scott O’Neil, executive director at NAVAIR’s Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division, told the publication.
The division will use the technology to train its engineers on small weaponry and is willing to provide the device to Pentagon-affiliated organizations for field applications, according to the article.
Spike features a cellphone camera-like optical technology and is intended to reduce the likelihood of collateral damage, Myers writes.
“The system isn’t necessarily ready to go to the fleet right now, but what we’ve done is, we’ve demonstrated that we can launch this and control the weapon and hit a target from launching it from an air platform,” O’Neil added, according to the report.
“And then we’ve launched it from ground platforms against moving targets.”