We all know of large, precision-guided weapons. Weighing in at about 3,000 pounds and with a unit price over $1M, the latest generation cruise missiles can be launched from the safety of a ship and travel over 1,000 miles with the necessary precision to minimize collateral damage. These missiles include advanced electronics such as datalinks, radar altimeters, inertial guidance, and digital processing. While they represent the culmination of decades long technology development, an emerging need for smaller precision-guided munitions is forcing the defense electronics industry to find novel ways of building extremely compact, but also modular, systems. Developing a precision-guided capability small enough to fit into a munition that weighs less than 0.1% of a cruise missile, all for a fraction of the cost, requires a new approach built from the ground up.
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