Raytheon's Cutting-Edge Defensive Microwaves

CHIMERAImage Source: Raytheon


Raytheon, under RTX, secures a $31.3 million contract to craft two innovative high-power microwave antenna systems for the U.S. military. These systems will harness directed energy to swiftly neutralize aerial threats. Designed for ruggedness and mobility, they mark a critical advance in non-kinetic defense strategies, ensuring rapid response against agile airborne dangers.


Raytheon, operating under RTX, embarks on a pioneering venture to engineer and assess two high-power microwave (HPM) antenna systems for the U.S. military. These systems are engineered to employ directed energy, enabling the swift incapacitation of airborne threats at the speed of light. The primary focus is on creating robust and easily deployable systems for frontline usage.

Awarded under a $31.3 million contract by the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division, Raytheon's task involves the development and delivery of prototype systems. These innovative initiatives form part of the Directed Energy Front-line Electromagnetic Neutralization and Defeat (DEFEND) program, slated for deployment with the U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force.

Colin Whelan, President of Advanced Technology at Raytheon, emphasizes the critical role of non-kinetic defense systems in bolstering America's national defense strategy. These novel high-power microwave systems, operating at the speed of light, offer cost-effective and dependable solutions, empowering military personnel to counter faster and more agile threats effectively.

With a legacy spanning almost eight decades in utilizing high-power microwaves, Raytheon leverages its extensive experience to develop these new HPM prototype systems. Building upon prior accomplishments like the Counter-Electronic High Power Microwave Extended Range Air Base Defense (CHIMERA), Raytheon aims to elevate defensive capabilities further.

The project, headquartered in Tucson, Arizona, is a collaborative effort involving the U.S. Air Force Research Lab, Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division, and the Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering. Prototype deliveries are anticipated in fiscal years 2024 and 2026, promising advancements in the military's defense capabilities against airborne threats.


Raytheon's innovative pursuit to create directed energy-based high-power microwave antenna systems reflects a significant leap forward in U.S. military defense technology. These advanced systems promise enhanced rapid response and defense capabilities against agile aerial threats, contributing significantly to the nation's defense strategy.

SteelGuru Business News