Military researchers at DARPA have been developing ammunition which can change its path in mid-air to ensure it always hits its target. Now, it can even correct itself mid-flight to hit a moving target.
The Department's Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance (EXACTO) is a .50 calibre bullet that manoeuvres itself as it travels through the air. It's far from clear how it works — "the system combines a manoeuvrable bullet and a real-time guidance system to track and deliver the projectile to the target," says DARPA — but it's now effective enough to swerve and dive to hit a moving target.
In a video released by DARPA, a trained sniper uses the system to reliably hit a target that starts moving once the shot is taken. But, unnervingly, it also manages to hit the spot when an untrained user of the sniper rifle takes a shot. The Department claims that it will "improve sniper effectiveness and enhance troop safety by allowing greater shooter standoff range and reduction in target engagement timelines." We just hope it stays firmly in the battlefield, given how effective it is in the hands of the untrained. [DARPA via The Verge]