With 4 stinger missiles U.S. Army’s first field air defense vehicles deployed in Europe will be replaced by laser guns in the future

Air defense Stryker vehicle M-SHORAD with 4 stinger missiles, and a 30mm fast gun and 12.7mm machine gun.

The U.S. Army has just deployed the first batch of close-range air defense vehicles, or M-SHORAD (Maneuver Short-Range Air Defense), which are converted from the M1126 Stryker wheeled armored vehicle (Stryker vehicle).

Defense News (Defense News) reported that soldiers of the U.S. Army’s 5th Battalion, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment (referred to as: 5-4 ADA), received four M-Shorad air defense Stryker vehicles with four AESA small active phase array radars and photoelectric detection systems, with four FIM-92 stinger missiles (Stinger Missile) and 30 mm M230 automatic machine gun, 7.62 mm M240 machine gun, its firepower than the previous generation of the Avenger System (Avenger System) to be stronger, Avenger System is a Humvee with stinger missiles and a .50-caliber machine gun.

Last October, the U.S. Army signed a $1.2 billion contract with General Dynamics Land Systems for the Air Defense Stryker combat vehicle.

The 5-4 ADA was the first unit to use the Air Defense Stryker and is therefore also responsible for testing the prototype M-Shorad system. By 2020, the unit’s 18 crewmembers, selected to test the prototype system, will undergo a six-month initial operational evaluation at White Sands Range, the press release said.

Andrew Veres, 5-4 ADA, said the use of new technology on the M-SHORAD is truly crossover, “This air defense system is much improved over any previous equipment, including survivability, mobility, reliability, and off-road capability.”

However, today’s equipment is only a transitional phase, because the U.S. Army expects laser weapons or other similar energy weapons to be more effective in defending against enemy rockets, missiles, mortars, and drones, or helicopter gunships, and there is no ammunition limit for laser weapons, as long as there is enough power.

The Stryker vehicle with the laser cannon.

This is not just talk; the U.S. Army in July 2019 has designated Northrop Grumman and Raytheon to develop a 50-kilowatt-powered laser cannon by Stryker’s carrier platform. This is a $203 million contract, the laser gun prototype has been assembled at the Redstone Arsenal in Alabama, the main technical difficulties in the energy storage system, probably high-efficiency capacitors.

Tests will be held at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, this spring to determine which laser gun performs best, and by fiscal year 2022, four Stryker laser air defense vehicles, to be called the Energy Weapon Mobile Short-Range Air Defense System (DE-M-SHORAD), should be in place.