Stinger missiles, which have been around since the 1980s, have undergone an upgrade that will allow them to keep up with changes in technology and modern American warfare.
The Stinger’s new mission is to track down and take out drones.
Defense One reported that the U.S. Army and Raytheon have modified the weapon, which was previously known for its ability to shoot down small aircraft such as helicopters.
The modification is the result of the Pentagon’s search for new ways to track and destroy the kinds of small drones that terrorists like the Islamic State group militants sometimes use in their attacks.
Raytheon exchanged the Stinger’s direct-impact warhead, which would explode after colliding with a target, with a “proximity fuze” that detonates when it detects an airborne target nearby, Raytheon said in a statement.
“The new proximity fuze gives ground forces the ability to engage small, elusive targets using a proven, familiar system,” said Kim Emzen, vice president of Raytheon’s Land Warfare Systems product line, in the statement.
In recent live-fire tests carried out at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, the upgraded Stingers took down a MQM-170C Outlaw drone along with another unidentified drone, according to Raytheon. Army developers said the missile uses an infrared seeker.
Watch as the Stinger brings down a high-tech drone:
Stingers are versatile because they are portable. They can be fired from a soldier’s shoulder or from vehicles. Now that they can destroy small drones, they are an even more valuable weapon in the military’s arsenal.
Stingers became famous from their successful attacks by the U.S.-allied mujahadeen against Soviet helicopters in Afghanistan 1980s. And now it looks like with their new capabilities, they are going to be around for a little while longer.
Like us on Facebook – USA Liberty News
Share this story on Facebook and Twitter and let us know what you think about this new Stinger modification.
What do you think about the Stinger’s new abilities? Scroll down to comment below!