Northrop Grumman to supply Special Forces with lightweight laser target designators

CRANE, Ind., 12 March 2014. Laser targeting experts at the Northrop Grumman Corp. Laser Systems segment in Apoka, Fla., will provide U.S. Special Forces with specialized laser target designator viewing devices under terms of a $12.3 million U.S. Navy contract announced Monday.

Officials of the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Crane, Ind., are asking Northrop Grumman Laser Systems for Special Operating Force Laser Aiming Marker (SOFLAM) Ground Laser Target Designator (GLTD) electro-optical systems, as well as spare parts and repair services.

SOFLAM GLTD is a ruggedized laser designator designed for Special Forces that enables the user to designate targets with laser beams that guide precision-guided munitions to the targets. It provides the capability of combining two guidance choices: hand-off to aircraft or standalone terminal guidance.

The SOFLAM lightweight integrated laser designator and rangefinder provides Special Operations Forces with the ability to locate and designate critical enemy targets for destruction using laser-guided ordnance.

Related: Laser target designators augment GPS with celestial navigation to enhance accuracy

The SOFLAM is capable of remote firing and for mounting accessories such as pointers and night sights, Northrop Grumman officials say. It can be carried by one person, and can be operated remotely during covert operations.

The SOFLAM enables Special Forces warfighters to remain undetected while they put accurate, precision-guided munitions exactly on target, Northrop Grumman officials say. The system uses a neodymium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet (Nd:YAG) laser with a wavelength of 1064 nanometers, and pulse energy of 80 millijoules.

SOFLAM saw action in Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom with Special Operations Forces, Joint Terminal Attack Controllers, and Forward Air Controllers to designate valuable and time-sensitive targets for precision munitions in Afghanistan and Iraq, Northrop Grumman officials say.

Company laser experts have developed an advanced version of the SOFLAM that is smaller, lighter, and operates from one BA-5590 battery by replacing a flashlamp-pumped laser with a diode-pumped laser with passive cooling.

Related: Air Force approaches industry for COTS-based targeting system for forward air controllers

The SOFLAM PEQ-1C reduces the number of BA 5590 batteries necessary for operation from five to one, and provides the warfighter with a smaller, lighter, and more efficient rugged laser designator for the field, company officials say. It has a range of 650 feet to 12 miles with one-meter accuracy.

Under terms of this contract, Northrop Grumman will provide SOFLAM systems to U.S. military forces, as well as those of Romania and Lithuania. Northrop Grumman will do the work in Apoka, Fla., and should be finished by March 2018.

For more information contact Northrop Grumman Laser Systems online at, or the Naval Surface Warfare Center-Crane at

Easily post a comment below using your Linkedin, Twitter, Google or Facebook account.

The Innovation That Matters™ Quiz

Innovation is one of the key drivers in the Defense industry. View this short video on the role of innovation. Then, simply answer 4 multiple-choice questions correctly to be entered into a drawing to win an Eddie Bauer fleece jacket!

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR THREE MOST RECENT WINNERS. Eric from L3, Alan from ATK, and Terry from the University of California

Military & Aerospace Photos

Related Products

CPU-PPC460EX-VME Processor Board

The CPU-PPC460EX-VME PowerPC processor board is designed for rugged, conduction and convection co...

XFP Transceiver Modules

Quagwire Technologies offers a full catalog of 10GbE Optical XFP Transceivers encompassing 10G pr...

ClipIR Small Clip On Thermal Imager for Fused Night Vision

ClipIR - Small Clip-On Thermal Imager for Fused Night Vision (thermal imaging/ I2) to see in tota...

Related Companies

Beyond Electronics Corp

Beyond Electronics(BEC) provides Rugged COTS board and system level solutions in various small form factor products c...

Federal Electronics Inc

Provides electronic manufacturing services focusing on military/high-end commercial applications. Services include ad...

TE Connectivity

Designs and manufactures a range of connectors, rugged electro-optic components, and assemblies, RF products, wire, c...
Wire News provided by   

Most Popular Articles


Digital signal processing for signals intelligence and electronic warfare

Military & Aerospace Electronics presents an expert Webcast on the design considerations for blending general-purposes processors (GPUs), general-purpose graphics processors (GPGPUs), field-programmable ...
Sponsored by:

Advantages of Intel Architecture Products and Wind River Solutions in Military & Aerospace Applications

This webinar explains the individual advantages of the Intel Architecture hardware, available for long-life supply, and the WRS software portfolio.  There are extraordinary advantages of combining such ...
Sponsored by:

social activity

All Access Sponsors

View the 2014 Buyer's Guide Now!

Mil & Aero Magazine

April 2014
Volume 25, Issue 4

Download Our Apps




Follow Us On...


Military & Aerospace Electronics

Weekly newsletter covering technical content, breaking news and product information

Defense Executive

Monthly newsletter covering business news and strategic insights for executive managers

Embedded Computing Report

Monthly newsletter covering news on embedded computing in aerospace, defense and industrial-rugged applications

Unmanned Vehicles

Monthly newsletter covering news updates for designers of unmanned vehicles