Sunday March 19, 2017

Lockheed Martin Has a Laser for the Army

Thanks to Lockheed Martin, the US Army now has a new toy for blowing up drones, rockets, and other highly maneuverable and evasive nuisances. The laser weapon is rated at 58kW, which seems like a practical amount of power, as 10kW alone would be enough to shoot a mortar out of the sky. Sadly, the laser beams will not be visible, contrary to illustrations.

News Image

The combined fiber laser uses multiple individual lasers that are focused together into a single beam. It’s a big device, but it should be able to fit onto an armored truck. The Navy has previously deployed a laser with about half the power on a ship in the Persian Gulf. That weapon requires a big battery and wouldn’t be viable in an on-the-ground mobile situation. Lockheed’s design is both lighter and more powerful than anything in use. It still isn’t small enough to make a handheld blaster and it wouldn’t be used for targeting individual people. The goal is to combat small aircraft, drones, and rockets.