Navy Lasers, Railgun, and Hypervelocity Projectile: Background and Issues for Congress [October 17, 2017] [open pdf - 2MB]
"The Navy is currently developing three potential new weapons that could improve the ability of its surface ships to defend themselves against enemy missiles--solid state lasers (SSLs), the electromagnetic railgun (EMRG), and the hypervelocity projectile (HVP). Any one of these new weapon technologies, if successfully developed and deployed, might be regarded as a 'game changer' for defending Navy surface ships against enemy missiles. If two or three of them are successfully developed and deployed, the result might be considered not just a game changer, but a revolution. Rarely has the Navy had so many potential new types of surfaceship missile-defense weapons simultaneously available for development and potential deployment. The HPV in particular has emerged as a program of particular interest to the Department of Defense (DOD), which is exploring the potential for using the weapon across multiple U.S. military services."
CRS Report for Congress, R44175
Federation of American Scientists: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/index.html