These 7 technologies that will revolutionize the battlefield by 2040 – Meta-Defense.fr

If the last years of the Cold War were the occasion for numerous and important technological advances in the field of weapons, with the advent of cruise missiles, stealth aircraft and ships, as well as advanced control and geolocation systems, then this dynamic completely stopped with the outbreak of war. collapse of the Soviet bloc. In the absence of a major and technologically advanced adversary, and due to the many asymmetric campaigns in which the armed forces have taken part, very few significant advances from a technological point of view have been recorded between 1990 and 2020, with the notable exception of the generalization of unmanned aerial vehicles of all types. But with the advent of China since the early 2010s, which has decided to catch up and technologically surpass all world players, on the one hand, and the reconstruction of military tools and Russian research, the technological pace of defense has changed again. has increased significantly in recent years, to the point of the emergence of new technologies that could radically change the conduct of military operations and the balance of power in the next 20 years.

In this article, we will present 7 technologies under development that are at different stages of technological maturity, but all of them can radically change the battlefield by 2040, even to the point of creating new forms of war or confrontation, unknown until now. or even obsolete certain technologies that today represent the strategic center of the La Défense organization: directed energy weapons, quantum computers, hypersonic weapons, artificial intelligence, railguns, robotics, and controversial neutrino detectors.

1- Directed Energy Weapon

2022 will be a key year for the emergence of directed energy weapon technologies, namely laser weapons and microwave guns. After all, it is this year that the US Army Guardian, also called DE-SHORAD from Direct Energy – short-range air defense, will enter service. The Guardian will indeed be the first powerful mobile air defense and anti-drone system to join combat units, with 50kW of power enough to deal with category 1-3 drones, that’s less than 25kg, but also to intercept and destroy artillery and mortars. shells, as well as the lightest air-to-surface missiles. In the same year, the Arleigh Burke Flight IIA class destroyer USS Preble will also be equipped with a 60 kW Helios laser self-defense system. In Israel, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett confirmed on Feb. 1 that armies will have “in less than a year” a laser weapon system called “Laser Wall” using a 100 kW laser to augment and partially replace the “Iron Dome” system. to protect the country from rocket and mortar attacks by Hamas.

The DE-SHORAD Guardian will enter service with the US Army this year – note the massive heatsinks covering the vehicle’s body.

This fascination with directed energy weapons answers an urgent need to counter potential attacks from light drones, stray munitions, missiles and artillery with technology that is more cost-effective than the missiles currently in service and technologically more efficient than conventional ones. Artillery systems CIWS. Indeed, most of these threats have a ridiculously low unit cost, allowing the adversary to carry out saturation campaigns at a lower cost, while the cost of the missiles used to counter them is 1050 times higher. Additionally, a 100kW laser can hit a target up to 20 km away, whereas a CIWS artillery system can only be effective at less than 4 km, often less, requiring 25 times more CIWS systems to be deployed to cover the same area. . However, the development of directed energy weapons is still in its infancy today, and many technological hurdles remain to be overcome in order to harness the full potential of these new systems.

The first of these is the sheer power of these weapons, because if a 50 or 100 kW laser can effectively destroy light drones or improvised missiles, much higher power, over 300 kW, must be provided to be effective against heavier cruise missiles. , airplanes or drones. However, increasing the power of combat lasers is far from a trivial topic, since it is necessary not only to have the technology to create a laser of such power, but also to be able to supply these systems with electrical energy. Moreover, whether it is energy production or the laser itself, they all produce a very large amount of heat that must be dissipated in order to maintain a stable and repetitive interaction, which creates serious problems in terms of materials as well as infrared radiation, while multispectral stealth became a priority for all combat forces. However, very significant efforts are being made, in particular in the United States, to respond to these difficulties, with the stated goal of having a full range of high energy protection systems for the army, navy and airlines by the end of the decade.

2- quantum computers


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