4 Bizarre Military Prototypes

Take a look at these 4 Bizarre Military Prototypes that were interesting concepts, but never made it to the battlefield.

The YB-35 Military Prototypes

The YB-35 Bomber

The YB 35, an experimental, piston powered, heavy bomber aircraft was developed for the United States Army Air Forces during and shortly after World War II by the Northrop Corporation (in 1949).

RoleStrategic bomber
ManufacturerNorthrop
DesignerJack Northrop
First flight25 June 1946
StatusCancelled in 1949
Primary userUnited States Air Force
Program costUS$66 million
VariantsNorthrop YB-49

High-Ball Military Prototypes

The “High Ball” Bouncing Bomb

Although many variations of the bouncing bomb were in service in the 40s, the High Ball was one of the largest bouncing bombs ever created.

The bouncing bomb is launched from the back of low flying aircraft. Spinning in the opposite direction, it skims (bounces) across water until eventually sinking and exploding. The bomb travelled vast distances only meters above water to avoid being shot down by underwater defenses.

TypeConventional (depth charge)
Place of origin United Kingdom
DesignedApril 1942

ADS Military Prototypes

Active Denial System (ADS)

The Active Denial System is a directed-energy weapon developed by the U.S. military for crowd control. This technology is non-lethal, and works by transmitting energy micro waves toward its target.  Informally, the ADS is also known as the Heat Ray since it works by heating the surface of targets. The ADS was deployed in 2010 with the United States military in the Afghanistan War, but was withdrawn without seeing combat.


Metal Storm Limited 

Metal Storm is a defunct research and development company based in Brisbane Australia. Specializing in ridiculous weaponry, Metal Storm fashioned an anti-air craft / anti-missile weapon, capable of firing 600 rounds per minute through 36 barrels. Strangely, this thing never took off… I suppose it was down to ongoing costs of a thousand bullets every few minutes.