Lockheed Compact Airborne High Energy Laser 2017

Unread postPosted: 07 Nov 2017, 06:14
by neptune
http://news.lockheedmartin.com/2017-11- ... pabilities

Lockheed Martin Receives Contract to Develop Compact Airborne High Energy Laser Capabilities

Nov. 6, 2017

The Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) awarded Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) $26.3 million for the design, development and production of a high power fiber laser. AFRL plans to test the laser on a tactical fighter jet by 2021. The contract is part of AFRL's Self-protect High Energy Laser Demonstrator (SHiELD) program, and is a major step forward in the maturation of protective airborne laser systems. "Lockheed Martin continues to rapidly advance laser weapon systems and the technologies that make them possible," said Dr. Rob Afzal, senior fellow of laser weapon systems at Lockheed Martin. "We have demonstrated our ability to use directed energy to counter threats from the ground, and look forward to future tests from the air as part of the SHiELD system."

The SHiELD program includes three subsystems:

1- SHiELD Turret Research in Aero Effects (STRAFE), the beam control system, which will direct the laser onto the target

2- Laser Pod Research & Development (LPRD), the pod mounted on the tactical fighter jet, which will power and cool the laser

3- Laser Advancements for Next-generation Compact Environments (LANCE), the high energy laser itself, which can be trained on adversary targets to disable them

LANCE is designed to operate in a compact environment, and as such, the Lockheed Martin team focused on developing a compact, high efficiency laser within challenging size, weight and power constraints. "Earlier this year, we delivered a 60 kW-class laser to be installed on a U.S. Army ground vehicle. It's a completely new and different challenge to get a laser system into a smaller, airborne test platform. It's exciting to see this technology mature enough to embed in an aircraft," said Afzal. "The development of high power laser systems like SHiELD show laser weapon system technologies are becoming real. The technologies are ready to be produced, tested and deployed on aircraft, ground vehicles and ships." Lockheed Martin has more than 40 years of experience developing laser weapon systems. The LANCE contract leverages technology building blocks from internal research and development projects, including the ATHENA system and ALADIN laser, as well as contract experience gained from programs such as the U.S. Army's Robust Electric Laser Initiative (RELI) program.

Re: Lockheed Compact Airborne High Energy Laser 2017

Unread postPosted: 07 Nov 2017, 06:21
by neptune
https://www.defense.gov/News/Contracts/ ... /1326276//

Press Operations
Release No: CR-187-17
Sept. 26, 2017

Air Force

Lockheed Martin Aculight Corp., Bothell, Washington, has been awarded a cost reimbursement type contract with a contract ceiling of $26,320,260 for laser advancements for next-generation compact environments. This contract will provide for the research and development of high-energy laser technologies. This contract award is the result of a competitive acquisition and six offers were received. Work will be performed in Bothell, Washington, and is expected to be completed by Sept. 30, 2022. Fiscal 2017 research, development, test, and evaluation funds in the amount of $2,000,000 will be obligated at time of award. Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico, is the contracting activity (FA9451-17-C-0052).

Re: Lockheed Compact Airborne High Energy Laser 2017

Unread postPosted: 11 May 2019, 06:32
by popcorn
Can't wait for this thing to be weaponized for carriage on aircraft. Aside from fighters, it would make a great addition to the B-21 Raider or vulnerable HVTs eg. tankers, transports, AWACS, etc.

https://www.aerospacetestinginternation ... ystem.html

The US Air Force has successfully tested a laser weapon system capable of shooting multiple missiles while they are in flight.

The ground-based laser weapon system, a prototype for a weapon which is intended to be mounted on fighter jets, was successfully tested at the High Energy Laser System Test Facility at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico on April 23.

The series of tests was run by the US Air Force Research Laboratory’s (AFRL) as part of its Self-Protect High Energy Laser Demonstrator (SHiELD) Advanced Technology Demonstration (ATD) Program. During the tests the demonstrator laser weapon system engaged and shoot down several air launched missiles in flight.

The SHiELD program is developing a directed energy laser system on an aircraft pod that will serve to demonstrate self-defense of aircraft against surface-to-air (SAM) and air-to-air (AAM) missiles.

Kelly Hammett, director of AFRL’s Directed Energy Directorate said, “This critical demonstration shows that our directed energy systems are on track to be a game changer for our warfighters.”

The test of the SHiELD system validates the effectiveness of lasers against target missiles, said the AFRL. Engineers on the project will now work to make the final SHiELD system much smaller and lighter, as well as ruggedized for an airborne environment.

Major General William Cooley, AFRL commander said, “The successful test is a big step ahead for directed energy systems and protection against adversarial threats.

“The ability to shoot down missiles with speed of light technology will enable air operation in denied environments. I am proud of the AFRL team advancing our Air Force’s directed energy capability.”

High energy laser technology, directed energy weapons and ways to defend against them have been in development by militaries around the world for several decades. Many believe, including the US AFRL, that they will be a “game changing technology” for air forces

Re: Lockheed Compact Airborne High Energy Laser 2017

Unread postPosted: 22 May 2019, 13:12
by mixelflick
Ridiculous potential to revolutionize air warfare, especially when incorporated into tactical/strategic aircraft..

Something like this could keep the B-52 flying for decades to come. Ooops, that's already the case... :)

Re: Lockheed Compact Airborne High Energy Laser 2017

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2019, 05:06
by tank-top
Imagine mounting these on B-2’s, B-52’s, F-35’s, legacy aircraft in pods like F-15E’s and F/A18’s, and even Global Hawks and other drones all networked. Air supremacy is one thing, this could take that to a whole new level. You could have multiple aircraft putting laser energy onto a single target from different angles, altitudes and distances simultaneously in less than a second at the speed of light. Until other nations could effectively field similar technology American air power would step out making the battlefield even more lopsided. Thermal, optical and IR tracking will need to make huge leaps forward as radar tracking would have instant dire consequences for the end user. I know we aren’t there yet but it’s not too far off of the right minds can get the right funding. Several years ago this was the stuff of Sci Fi movies but now it’s on the cusp of reality, lasers are almost here, with the right funding and foresight the next couple decades of air wars are could be decidedly one sided.

Before I’m flamed, I know we’re not there yet but we’re much closer than most will admit. My bet is that multiple networked medium powered lasers will be fielded long before very powerful lasers are used by decades.

Re: Lockheed Compact Airborne High Energy Laser 2017

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2019, 05:49
by popcorn