Lockheed Martin and Rolls-Royce will create the first 100-kilowatt military laser

The US army has completed the tender for the creation of the first combat laser, whose power will be 100 kW. The winners were an American company Dynetics, and Lockheed Martin, which will attract and third-party organizations — in particular, the automotive giant Rolls-Royce. The competition was held from mid-2016.

It is planned that defense companies will create a tactical machine with a high-energy laser on the basis of army FMTV truck family. The laser will be placed on the roof, whereby such machines will be able to shoot down missiles, UAVs, helicopters and even light aircraft. Now these trucks are mainly used for transportation of ammunition.

For integration of laser machines will be redesigned significantly: it is planned to install a hybrid power plant, which was not long ago shown by Rolls-Royce. It has a capacity of 300 kilowatts and is able to power the lasers up to 100 kW. The beams from multiple laser emitters will be transmitted through the optical fiber in a special aggregator that the output will give a single laser beam of high power.

Lockheed Martin plans to conduct the first tests in 2-3 years, and the US army want to get new trucks into service within 5 years. Given that the basis is spectral combining, the implementation in such a short time is quite real.

Moreover, the company has the necessary expertise: in 2018 she patented a compact fusion reactor. The reactor can be powerful enough to worked as an aircraft carrier, the plane size of the C-5 Galaxy, to provide electricity to a city with a population of from 50 to 100,000 people and maybe even send us on a trip to Mars.

Parallel to the laser combat unit experiencing China, which plans to use it for defense. Despite the fact that it has less power, can hit air targets that are within 5 kilometers.

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