DARPA announced this week that it had successfully demonstrated its new Mobile Force Protection (MFP) system, which can launch semi-autonomous interceptors that shoot kinetic "streamers" at enemy drones in order to clog their propellers or rotors and bring them to the ground. In addition, DARPA's announcement stated that "other non-kinetic techniques were developed and demoed." To find out more about the MFP anti-drone system and what these other techniques were, The War Zone spoke with Dr. Greg Avicola of DARPA's Tactical Technology Office, who serves as Program Manager for the Mobile Force Protection program. Avicola revealed previously unreleased details about the MFP system, including the fact that it has been demonstrated using Lockheed Martin's MORFIUS, another counter-drone interceptor that uses a high-power microwave directed energy weapon to defeat drone swarms.
After our initial report on MFP, we still had additional questions, including about just how autonomous the nature of the anti-drone system is. While some of those details still cannot be shared, Avicola said there’s a human operator in the loop to provide guidance to the system overall, but the goal is to design a system that can handle a large number of incoming drone threats at once.