Overheard this morning on Raytheon’s second quarter earnings conference call with analysts, CEO Bill Swanson compared the acceptance of active denial technology to that of unmanned aerial vehicles.
If Swanson’s analogy is literally accurate, that would mean hundreds or thousands of such systems fielded within the next few years.
“The way I see AD [active denial] is almost the way UAVs and unmanned vehicles came out. Ten years ago you could count the number on one hand, and nowthere are thousands flying in Iraq … And AD is the same way. You got to getthrough the barrier but once you do people are going to understand that it’sbetter to shout and stun rather than shout and shoot and kill somebody.”
It’s no trivial issue for Swanson’s missile system’s division, which is almost alone in the industry in its pursuit of active denial systems. Swanson acknowledged that new missile sales cannot drive the division’s growth into the future, so the success of spin-off technologies such as active denial are critical.