Laser weapons demand lots of electrical power, but systems integration also must play a central role

WASHINGTON – When it comes to laser weapons on ships, land vehicles, and aircraft, it is integration, and not power, that represents today's biggest challenge. Breaking Defense reports.

Laser weapons demand lots of electrical power, but systems integration also must play a central role
Laser weapons demand lots of electrical power, but systems integration also must play a central role
WASHINGTON – When it comes to laser weapons on ships, land vehicles, and aircraft, it is integration, and not power, that represents today's biggest challenge. Breaking Defense reports. Continue reading original article

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

26 March 2019 -- In addition to power, systems integrators must deal with beam control, targeting, and controls. "we’ve got to get more power — but to me the problem I have today is the integration of that [laser] into my existing combat system," says Rear Adm. Ron Boxall, director of surface warfare on the Navy’s Pentagon staff.

If the laser weapon doesn’t get targeting data from the ship’s radars, it must rely entirely on its own built-in optics. Conversely, the laser’s optics can’t provide targeting data to any other weapon on the ship. Systems integration plays a big role.

Laser weapons can be so precise as sensors and as weapons that they supply and demand much more data, much more quickly, than the radar-guided missiles that the Navy’s Aegis fire control system is built around.

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John Keller, chief editor
Military & Aerospace Electronics

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