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Tag: laser

Air Force tests ATHENA laser weapon against multiple drones

Air Force tests ATHENA laser weapon against multiple drones

Business
Nov. 7 (UPI) -- Members of the U.S. Air Force used the Advanced Test High Energy Asset, referred to as ATHENA, to shoot down a variety of drones in a Lockheed Martin demonstration of the technology. In the latest test of the ground-portable laser weapon system, Airmen engaged and shot down multiple fixed wing and rotary drones at a government test range in Fort Sill, Okla., Lockheed said on Thursday. "We've watched in recent news as this type of laser weapon solution is essential for deterring unmanned vehicle type threats, so it's an exciting time for us to watch Airmen compete Lockheed Martin's critical technology," Sarah Reeves, vice president of missile defense programs at Lockheed, said in a statement. For the test, Airmen used a government command and control system and radar syste...
Rheinmetall, MBDA start work oon ship-mounted laser for German navy

Rheinmetall, MBDA start work oon ship-mounted laser for German navy

Business
Aug. 12 (UPI) -- German defense contractors Rheinmetall and MBDA Deutschland will build a high-energy laser for installation aboard a German navy ship. While performance specifications or timetables have not yet been developed by the government Federal Office for Bundeswehr Equipment, the announcement last week is the first time the German military has entered the arena of laser weapon development. Plans call for the two companies to construct, integrate and test a laser demonstrator aboard a K-130-class corvette. Also called the Braunschweig class of small warships, it is Germany's newest class of ocean-going corvettes, with five ships entering service to replace the German navy's Gepard-class fast attack craft. "We're going to be cooperating very closely to put the military potential o...
Europe launches second EDRS space laser satellite

Europe launches second EDRS space laser satellite

Science
Europe has launched the second satellite in its space laser telecommunications network.It will use optical beams to pull pictures and data from other spacecraft and then speed that information to the ground.EDRS-C, as it is known, was sent into orbit on Tuesday by an Ariane-5 rocket from the Kourou spaceport in French Guiana.It joins the first node in the network, EDRS-A, which was put up in 2016.That spacecraft was positioned over Central Africa to service Europe.The new satellite will sit slightly to the east, where it will provide additional capacity.The European Data Relay System is a joint venture between the European Space Agency and aerospace giant Airbus.It is used predominantly by the European Union's Sentinel-1 and Sent...
United Kingdom enters laser weapons race

United Kingdom enters laser weapons race

Business
July 10 (UPI) -- The United Kingdom's Ministry of Defense announced that it seeks developers of laser- and radio frequency-guided weapons to shoot down drones and other enemy threats. The concept is not new. The United States first employed non-lethal lasers in military service in 2014, largely to disable enemy electrical sensors, and the United Kingdom spent $ 37 million on a laser prototype in 2017. The announcement this week by the Ministry of Defense specifically calls for deployment of "high energy light beams to target and destroy enemy drones and missiles. Radio frequency weapons are designed to disrupt and disable enemy computers and electronics." It asks for development of three new DEW [Directed Energy Weapons] to "explore the potential of the technology and accelerate its intr...
Nasa's IceSat space laser makes height maps of Earth

Nasa's IceSat space laser makes height maps of Earth

Science
One of the most powerful Earth observation tools ever put in orbit is now gathering data about the planet.IceSat-2 was launched just under three months ago to measure the shape of the ice sheets to a precision of 2cm.But the Nasa spacecraft's laser instrument is also now returning a whole raft of other information.It is mapping the height of the land, of rivers, lakes, forests; and in a remarkable demonstration of capability - even the depth of the seafloor."We can see down to 30m in really clear waters," said Lori Magruder, the science team leader on the IceSat mission. "We saw one IceSat track just recently that covers 300km in the Caribbean and you see the ocean floor the entire way," the University of Texas researcher told BB...