The Department of Defense (DoD) is continuing testing activities for hypersonic weapons as part of efforts to establish a national space defense architecture in the early 2020s, DoD News reported Thursday.
Michael White, undersecretary of defense for research and engineering, said at a prior panel discussion that the DoD aims to drive the development of offensive hypersonic weapons over the next year.
"A number of our programs across the portfolio will realize flight test demonstration over the next 12 months and then start the transition from weapon system concept development to actual weapon system development moving forward," he noted.
According to White, the effort will support DoD’s partnership with the Space Development Agency (SDA) to develop a hypersonic and ballistic tracking space sensor as well as satellite prototypes.
"We have to work on sensor architecture," he said. "Because they do maneuver and they are global, you have to be able to track them worldwide and globally. It does drive you towards a space architecture, which is where we're going."