Videos supplied by DARPA show the bullets making sharp turns in midair as they pursue their targets
(CNN) Don Melvin writes: You know the phrase “dodging a bullet”? Forget about it. Probably not going to happen anymore.
The U.S. military said this week it has made great progress in its effort to develop a self-steering bullet.
“True to DARPA’s mission, EXACTO has demonstrated what was once thought impossible: the continuous guidance of a small-caliber bullet to target.”
— Jerome Dunn, DARPA program manager
In February, the “smart bullets” — .50-caliber projectiles equipped with optical sensors — passed their most successful round of live-fire tests to date, according to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA.
In the tests, an experienced marksman “repeatedly hit moving and evading targets,” a DARPA statement said.
“This live-fire demonstration from a standard rifle showed that EXACTO is able to hit moving and evading targets with extreme accuracy at sniper ranges unachievable with traditional rounds.”
“Additionally,” the statement said, “a novice shooter using the system for the first time hit a moving target.” In other words, now you don’t even have to be a good shot to hit the mark.
The system has been developed by DARPA’s Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance program, known as EXACTO.
“Fitting EXACTO’s guidance capabilities into a small .50-caliber size is a major breakthrough and opens the door to what could be possible in future guided projectiles across all calibers.”
“True to DARPA’s mission, EXACTO has demonstrated what was once thought impossible: the continuous guidance of a small-caliber bullet to target,” said Jerome Dunn, DARPA program manager. Read the rest of this entry »