US Defense company Raytheon has successfully tested “The Pike,” a 40mm laser semi-guided missile that can be fired using a standard tube grenade launcher. The company conducted two trials for the Pike – and in both times it successfully hit the targeted impact area more than 2,300 yards away. The missile outperformed the M203 40mm grenade launchers in terms of range, as they normally only have a max range of 150 yards. The company’s director J.R. Smith says that its extended-range capability has never been seen before in any handheld weapon on the battlefield.
The company has plans of launching the same capabilities in other platforms, such as mounted launchers on small boats, ATVs, and drones. As Raytheon develops the missile, the company assures that Pike will become smarter and smarter. The current configuration enables the warfighter to plug in programmable laser codes as they load it on the launcher, but future developments will try to work on “multiple-round simultaneous programming and targeting with data link capabilities.”