Navy eyes shipboard directed-energy weapons to disable hostile small vessels in coastal waters and harbors

ARLINGTON, Va., 21 Jan. 2011. U.S. Navy officials are considering directed-energy weapons such as military lasers or high-power microwaves for installation on surface warships and auxiliary ships that could a small vessel ranging in size from a fast-attack inshore craft to an intercoastal cargo or fishing vessel common in littoral waters.

Jan 21st, 2011
Pennwell web 500 358
ARLINGTON, Va., 21 Jan. 2011. U.S. Navy officials are considering directed-energy weapons such as military lasers or high-power microwaves for installation on surface warships and auxiliary ships that could a small vessel ranging in size from a fast-attack inshore craft to an intercoastal cargo or fishing vessel common in littoral waters.The Office of Naval Research (ONR) issued a request for information (11-RFI-0003) Wednesday called Directed Energy Viability for Ship Disable Capability to survey industry for information on mature advanced technology involving lasers and high power microwaves that could be installed on a Navy ship within 18 to 24 months.ONR researchers are focusing primarily on non-lethal weapons that could damage boats or kill their engines. The idea is to stop the approach of an unidentified or hostile boat moving toward a naval combatant in littoral waters.Navy researchers caution that this announcement is not a formal solicitation; ONR will use this information to shape potential future directed-energy R&D solicitations.

The ONR study will focus on laser and RF directed-energy systems; guns, projectiles, missiles, biological, chemical, or physical barriers are not part of the study.

Company officials who would like to participate in the survey should respond to ONR no later than 2 March 2011, to program manager Peter Morrison by e-mail at morrisp@onr.navy.mil, or by post at Office of Naval Research, Code 351, 875 North Randolph St., Arlington VA 22203-1995.

For questions or concerns contact Morrison by phone at 703-696-0553, or Joseph Cloft by e-mail at joesph.cloft@navy.mil, or by phone at 703-696-0989.

More information is online at http://www.fbodaily.com/archive/2011/01-January/21-Jan-2011/FBO-02362339.htm.

More in Defense Executive