Military Embedded Systems

Hypersonic rocket test equipped with GAEMS autonomous flight tech


February 02, 2022

Emma Helfrich

Technology Editor

Military Embedded Systems

General Atomics photo.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) announced that its Autonomous Flight Termination Units (AFTUs) carried onboard two sounding rockets were demonstrated during a High Operational Tempo for Hypersonics test flight campaign sponsored by the Navy Strategic Systems Programs and Army Hypersonic Program Office.

According to the company, the AFTUs help assure missile flight safety and were part of a test campaign to demonstrate technologies to advance the development of the Navy’s Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS) and the Army’s Long Range Hypersonic Weapon (LRHW) offensive hypersonic strike capability.

GA-EMS’ AFTUs are designed to offer greater flexibility to assure flight safety for missiles launched for space applications or military weapons testing. Integrated aboard a missile, the AFTU takes a pre-launch defined mission profile and compares it with what the launched missile experiences as it flies.

Officials claim that if the flight profile rules or boundaries are violated during flight, the AFTU will command the vehicle to destruct. The AFTU’s compact, lightweight design reduces the size, weight, and power requirements aboard the test vehicle.


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