The US aerospace and defense company Raytheon Technologies invested in the startup Hermeus Corporation through its venture capital group, RTX Ventures.
Hermeus is developing hypersonic aircraft for defense and commercial applications. In August 2020, it signed a partnership with the United States Air Force (USAF) to deliver hypersonic travel as a potential solution to Air Force One transportation.
“Hypersonic technologies are of critical importance to national security, which is why we made our first investment in a company with such a bold plan and vision in this space,” said Daniel Ateya, managing director of RTX Ventures. “Hermeus’ technical approach and business plan balances near-term defense applications with long-term commercial aspirations and will help our customers reimagine the possibilities of hypersonic technologies.”
Raytheon’s investment will support the completion of Hermeus’ first aircraft, Quarterhorse, and accelerate the development of its next aircraft, Darkhorse. In November 2021, Hermeus unveiled a full-scale Quarterhorse aircraft prototype.
Hypersonic technology has become a priority of the United States military with the emergence of hypersonic weapons in the arsenals of other world powers, such as Russia and China.
On May 11, 2022, the US Missile Defense Agency said it was “to develop and deploy a layered missile defense system to defend the United States, its deployed forces, allies and friends from missile attacks in all phases of flight,” with an emphasis on countering hypersonic platforms.