Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Ship laser weapons move forward

Boeing been awarded a $29.5 million contract to design and develop a beam control system that could provide exceptional accuracy for laser weapons on U.S. Navy warships. Boeing will begin to design a prototype High Power Beam Control Subsystem that's compatible with High Energy Lasers based on solid-state laser technology. Boeing's solution will be compatible with systems other companies are designing for the Office of Naval Research's Solid State Laser Technology Maturation program. The resulting beam control system will focus and hold a laser on a moving aim point long enough to disable the target. Doing that with a ship-based laser is particularly challenging, given the maritime environment and constant movement of an at-sea vessel. The Boeing beam control system capitalizes on the company's work with the U.S. Army's High Energy Laser Mobile Demonstrator (HEL MD). In demonstrations at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., in 2014, HEL MD acquired, tracked and destroyed targets in windy and foggy conditions. (Source: Boeing, 02/17/15) Previous