In the never-ending effort to make sure the US Military is light years ahead of every other country, the US Marines and DARPA are on the verge of rolling out a .50-caliber sniper bullet that can change directions mid-flight, as the target shifts.
As you’ll see in the video below, this bullet if fully capable of changing direction after being fired, and can drastically reduce the number of shots wasted in the field. This absolutely will NOT replace the need for sniper teams in the Marines, but it will certainly alleviate the stress put on those teams.
The agency responsible for developing the Defense Department’s next generation, science fiction-like technology is working to bring guided bullets that can change direction mid-flight to the military’s most elite marksmen.
After successfully test firing a guided .50-caliber round this summer, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is now conducting “system-level” testing, which will help determine how a guided bullet would work with a service rifle on the battlefield.
In July, DARPA posted a video of testing for its Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance, or EXACTO program, in which several of the steerable rounds were deliberately fired off target. In the video, the bullet changes direction multiple times before striking the intended target, which was located to the left of the test’s point of aim.
The new technology would be a welcome and useful development, but wouldn’t replace the need for well-trained traditional sniper teams, said Ryan Innis, a former scout sniper with 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion. Innis, who left the Marine Corps as a sergeant in 2013 after serving on the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Units anti-piracy raid force near East Africa, said a guided bullet could make all Marines pinpoint marksmen.
“This is an amazing advancement in sniper technology and it will save countless American lives on the battlefield,” he told Marine Corps Times. “It will turn any Marine into a precision shooter at extreme distances.”
Still, he emphasized the need for skilled snipers.
“This technology cannot and should never replace the job of the sniper team,” said Innis, who has extensive experience with .50-caliber rifles and now works as an instructor for Michigan-based Condition Zero Training Group. “Technology can fail at any given moment and shooters need to adapt to this and respond accordingly.”
Now let’s watch the most badass bullet the world has ever known in action:
It’s shit like this that stops me from ever feeling unsafe at night. The news would have us all believe the world is crumbling, the USA is always on the verge of collapse, and we could all die at any moment…but then I see something like this. And how the greatest military force the world has EVER known can drop a bullet in any direction they want, even after firing…fucking incredible.
The EXACTO system seeks to improve sniper effectiveness and enhance troop safety by allowing greater shooter standoff range and reduction in target engagement timelines,” DARPA’s website states. “The EXACTO 50-caliber round and optical sighting technology expects to greatly extend the day and nighttime range over current state-of-the-art sniper systems. The system combines a maneuverable bullet and a real-time guidance system to track and deliver the projectile to the target, allowing the bullet to change path during flight to compensate for any unexpected factors that may drive it off course.”
Exactly how the bullet works is a closely guarded national secret. But past challenges to develop a steerable bullet have included creating electronics that are robust enough to withstand the monumental g-forces exerted as a bullet explodes from the barrel of a firearm.
Let’s just watch that bullet change direction one more, for good measure:
We covered this self-guiding bullet here on BroBible back in July, but as it’s entered a the new “system-level” of testing, and might soon be deployed, we thought it pertinent to roll out an UPDATE.
For more on the baddest ass bullet the world has ever seen, you can head on over to The Marine Corps Times by clicking HERE.