And they said Star Wars would never work

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by USALegate, Jul 29, 2007.

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  1. This is the reason American has not produced new anti-air missiles like the Russkies for a while now. Why use projectiles when you can have insta-shot lasers? Recent tests with the 747-airbone lasers were a massive success and we now have frikin' lasers on the frikin' trucks, people...

    US Army eyes truck-mounted laser

    The US Army is developing a truck-mounted laser weapon to destroy rockets, artillery shells and mortars.

    Aerospace giant Boeing has been awarded a contract to start on the first phase of the project - designing a control system for the laser beam.

    The solid state laser weapon would eventually be mounted on a 10-tonne, eight-wheel-drive tactical truck.

    The American military has several programmes underway to develop battlefield lasers.

    Under the Phase I contract, worth $7m (£3m), Boeing will develop a preliminary design for a "rugged beam control system" to be used on a Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck (HEMTT).

    We believe this is the next step for developing a weapon system that can change the face of the battlefield
    Pat Shanahan, Boeing Missile Defense Systems
    The control system is needed to accurately point and focus a laser beam on an enemy target.

    The objective of the High Energy Laser Technology Demonstrator (HEL TD) programme is to demonstrate that a mobile, solid state laser can effectively counter rockets, shells and mortars.

    Pat Shanahan, vice president and general manager of Boeing Missile Defense Systems, said the contract was important because "it supports a cornerstone of the Army's high-energy laser programme".

    He added: "We believe this is the next step for developing a weapon system that can change the face of the battlefield."

    Directed energy

    Solid state, electrically powered lasers are one of several "directed energy" technologies being investigated by the US Army.

    Chemically powered lasers have been able to achieve megawatts (one megawatt equals one million watts) of power; but they are large and heavy, and require a constant supply of chemical fuels.

    Solid state lasers may lack this power potential, but they tend to be compact and lightweight, holding promise for the development of vehicle-mounted weapons.

    Massachusetts-based Textron Systems and Northrop Grumman are the only companies currently working on solid state lasers for the US military. In 2005, they were selected to separately develop a 100 kilowatt (kW) solid state laser by 2010.

    A group at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory has hit 67 kilowatts (kW) of average power in the laboratory with a pulsed solid state laser.

    Pulsed laser beams switch on and off very rapidly. The US military is said to favour a continuous wave (CW), or "always-on" laser.

    The lethality of a laser comes from more than just the power level. Achieving good beam quality - a measure of how well-focused the laser beam is - is paramount, as is the duration of the beam, or its "run time".

    The Boeing contract contains options that, if exercised, will call for the company to build and test part of the beam control system integrated on its vehicle platform.

    The options would increase the contract cost for the total programme to approximately $50m (£24m).

    Boeing is also one of several companies, including Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin, building the Airborne Laser (ABL) for the US military.

    The ABL consists of a high-energy, chemical oxygen iodine laser (COIL) mounted on a modified 747 freighter aircraft. It is designed to shoot down enemy ballistic missiles in their early boost phase, when they are most vulnerable.
  2. oldbaldy

    oldbaldy LE Moderator Good Egg (charities)
    1. Battlefield Tours

    It even zaps posts.
  3. chrisg46

    chrisg46 LE Book Reviewer

  4. anyone got a clue what he's on about?
    • Funny Funny x 1
  5. "Developing a weapon system that can change the face of the battlefield"

    Most of them would be pretty ineffective if they couldn't, no?
  6. oldbaldy

    oldbaldy LE Moderator Good Egg (charities)
    1. Battlefield Tours

    perhaps USALegate has been terminated?
  7. in_the_cheapseats

    in_the_cheapseats LE Moderator

    No just hidden. I take it he is going on about the Boeing contract announced this week looking at the development of a land based laser system? It is a continuation of the work going in to seriously powered aircraft based systems that will be used to attack missiles in early boost phase.

    The land based system will take out "projectiles". Wonder if that includes aircraft?
  8. They'd have to be pretty damn quick to do that.

    So theyre on about a laz cannon (hehe..sounds like warhammer) fitted to a Boeing 747, the most nimble aircraft in the sky.......not!.. linked into that we have the human input side of it.. Tail end charlies used blankets of fire to take down incoming during the Second World War.
    How the modern equivalents expect to get into position (as in the aircraft) then get the 'gunner' (even if computer based) to have sufficient speed and accuracy is beyond me.

    I foresee it all going pearshaped at 30000 ft.

    As for the one theyre gonna truck mount, fair do's. It works in Warhammer 40,000, there's no reason why it wont on the battlefield.. :roll: Just fer chrissakes nobody ask the Guy operating it for a light..
  9. They say the laser will be on the truck, but what about the target acquisition system; or for that matter, the massive power supplies needed for something like that. Are they going to be on other vehicles? Should make a nice big target group if so. And forgive me for asking, but hasn't laser weapon research so far thrown up this problem with "adverse atmospheric conditions"? Bit of a bugg*r if your system is inop when you need it most because of the "wrong type of weather" :twisted:
  10. Or even when the debris from succesfully neutralised incoming and the shit kicked up from impacts in the ground and recoil, the group would become inneffective after a couple of minutes of operation.
  11. Trouble is, too many spams are unable to differentiate between Hollywood fantasy and reality.

    The frightening thing is, that goes for many in their politico-military infrastructure too! :omfg:
  12. What are you, the American version of Earth? Your laser on a 747 was great, except it involved getting a 747 within 100 miles of launch site in invariably contested airspace.

    Great science, fairly poor air power.
    • Funny Funny x 1
  13. All you folk thinking it will never happen, just imagine what the population of Alderaan said before they went bye bye :p
    • Funny Funny x 2