Military Review

UAV + laser. The United States is developing a missile strike system still on the rise

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The US Army does not leave attempts to create a carrier with a laser weaponsable to shoot down ballistic missiles on their initial trajectory. The US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) has signed new contracts with Lockheed Martin, Boeing and General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems, Warspot reports with reference to the portal flightglobal.com.


UAV + laser. The United States is developing a missile strike system still on the rise


All three contractors had previously received funding from the MDA for the initial design of laser systems using the Low Power Laser Demonstrator program. At the first stage, companies had to develop a device capable of focusing and holding a laser beam on a target, while taking into account the vibrations of the flying drone on which they will be installed. The second stage, for which additional funds from MDA are allocated, should include a gradual increase in the power of the laser system. According to the plan, by the year 2021 companies must provide a working prototype with a capacity of at least 500 kW, and two years after that, bring the power of the laser system to 1 MW.

In parallel with the development of a laser system for air defense, missile defense, MDA is looking for media for them. According to the information currently available, the company Northrop Grumman proposed to use the RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV upgraded accordingly for the laser carrier. Another carrier can be a converted Lockheed U-2 Dragon Lady reconnaissance aircraft.
Photos used:
flightglobal.com
35 comments
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  1. DenZ
    DenZ 6 September 2018 14: 59
    +8
    What missiles we are talking about is unclear. If about tactical ballistic then you can still believe it. And if about ICBMs then who
    will let this crocodile with a laser into the missile launch zone (taking into account the laser range).
    1. novel66
      novel66 6 September 2018 15: 14
      +4
      here, too, it seemed strange - over Siberia would they chit?
      1. maxim947
        maxim947 6 September 2018 15: 50
        +4
        The main problem with lasers is the power plant, as soon as they solve it, an avalanche-like re-equipment of everything and everything will begin, a promising topic
        1. spech
          spech 6 September 2018 17: 56
          +1
          with a power of 1 MW and an efficiency (say) of 50%, where will 1 MW of heat be consumed?
          1. igorbrsv
            igorbrsv 6 September 2018 19: 58
            0
            Exactly. Not to mention the installation itself, let’s say a mini-reactor. A fundamentally new source of energy is needed. Even in fantasies I can’t foresee it, if only along with overcoming the speed of light
            1. Vadim237
              Vadim237 6 September 2018 23: 02
              -2
              At Burevestnik this problem with the power plant was solved.
          2. abc_alex
            abc_alex 7 September 2018 07: 39
            +1
            Yes, you are an optimist, my friend. With efficiency, trim the sturgeon at least twice. :)
    2. Piramidon
      Piramidon 6 September 2018 15: 23
      +3
      Quote: DenZ
      What missiles we are talking about is unclear. If about tactical ballistic then you can still believe it. And if about ICBMs then who
      will let this crocodile with a laser into the missile launch zone (taking into account the laser range).

      I doubt that around tactical missiles, no one will let them whirl around in anticipation of a launch. Let the loot saw. True, they have an advantage - a worldwide printing press.
      1. Black sniper
        Black sniper 6 September 2018 16: 33
        +2
        Well, SOI Reagan is more understandable to shoot down a rocket on approach, but at the initial stage of flight ??? This simply can’t be in principle !!! I admit that their plane will be nearby, but who will let it go. Another salary for pseudogeny. laughing
        1. igorbrsv
          igorbrsv 6 September 2018 17: 55
          -1
          On approach it is completely unrealistic with a laser. She's intercontinental
  2. Shahno
    Shahno 6 September 2018 15: 18
    +3
    It doesn’t matter what happens, but the movement is exactly right ...
    1. igorbrsv
      igorbrsv 6 September 2018 15: 36
      0
      Is there a power source even in the long run? Minusanul by the way, not me
      1. voyaka uh
        voyaka uh 6 September 2018 16: 32
        +1
        There are supercapacitors. Gives a powerful impulse-discharge.
        1. igorbrsv
          igorbrsv 6 September 2018 18: 02
          0
          For megawat, the battery will fit only in the transporter. Recharging will take days. One salvo. I don’t understand in nuclear reactors. But they need a linear load. How to control the decay reaction during battery charge
        2. abc_alex
          abc_alex 7 September 2018 07: 57
          +1
          AND? This powerful impulse hits the working fluid and does what to it. :)
          And the point is not even that and that, as you were told, this battery will be charged for days, because there is no ship's power plant on board the UAV. The point is that no one will allow such a device to reach the coveted 100-200 km to the starting positions. They will become priority targets and will be exterminated with extreme cruelty by all means, up to missile strikes on their bases. And even the "laser Boeing", which was scrapped due to the low power of the laser, which limited the radius, could not shoot further, which made the real use of the machine unrealistic.

          Well, there is a whole range of purely technical problems. For example, the degradation of the focusing system during shooting. The gigantic heat dissipation of the system, which, on the one hand, requires a powerful scheme for taking heat from the working fluid, and on the other hand, makes the apparatus a "Christmas tree" in the IR range. And then there is the "Jedi sword" effect, which limits the laser power in principle.
          1. voyaka uh
            voyaka uh 7 September 2018 11: 57
            +2
            "there is also the" Jedi sword "effect, which limits the power of the laser in principle." ////
            ----
            This effect was deceived by engineering: they create several rays that are brought together into a single spot on the target.
    2. Ros 56
      Ros 56 6 September 2018 16: 32
      0
      And then, pockets need to be replenished.
  3. Wedmak
    Wedmak 6 September 2018 15: 32
    +6
    Where is the drone to place the electricity generator for the 1 MW laser? And in general, will he raise it? They take some doubts, the lasers on large transporters experienced and then there were problems, but now some kind of ... bird, tail and feathers, wants to carry a powerful laser.
  4. igorbrsv
    igorbrsv 6 September 2018 15: 32
    +2
    What is capable of delivering a similar amount of energy of 1 MW? The mini-reactor is not capable of this.
    1. Black sniper
      Black sniper 6 September 2018 16: 40
      +1
      OKIRiF Society of Designers, Inventors, Rationalizers and FANS !!! lol
  5. Ros 56
    Ros 56 6 September 2018 16: 31
    0
    This is what range you need to possess, and secondly, what will they drag the company or platoon of fortune tellers with them, otherwise how will they know from which direction and from which bush there will be a start? The delirium of the striped generals turns into a loud ringing from the contractors, who then share with them.
  6. Forestol
    Forestol 6 September 2018 17: 14
    0
    Since Rogozin, who oversees the defense industry, is a humanist and a graduate of the Institute of Youth (formerly a profile from the KGB), please inform our defense workers of the terrible military secret. Before launching an ICBM, it is necessary to launch and detonate an anti-missile launch vehicle at a standard height of 80 km
    its NFV, representing nuclear, nuclear charge. An explosion at a given height causes EMP, destroying all unprotected electrical circuits and blinding all stations for 30 minutes. From the materials of the lecture of the elementary course on missile defense at the Mozhaisk Academy 30 years ago.
    1. Shahno
      Shahno 6 September 2018 17: 18
      +2
      Thank you, I will transfer to the center ...
    2. Vadim237
      Vadim237 6 September 2018 23: 05
      -2
      And at the same time bring their own satellites out of action - brilliant.
      1. Forestol
        Forestol 7 September 2018 07: 28
        +1
        buddy, if they launch an ICBM, not like satellites in orbit, even your Friday beer on the couch is canceled, most likely, forever. Why it is necessary to launch a missile defense first, it has a maximum lifting speed.
      2. Forestol
        Forestol 7 September 2018 08: 05
        0
        By the way, the destruction of the enemy’s satellite constellation before any military confrontation that hangs in our hemisphere is a vital necessity. Because the accuracy of guidance of all enemy missiles, both ICBMs and cruise missiles, by stars is orders of magnitude worse than by GPS. The so-called KVO of American missiles will be, like the Chinese Dun-1, of the last century. So just the explosion at an altitude of 80 km above our territory before the seconds to the moment X will not allow us to see the start of our ICBMs at all, and for the period of 30 minutes the Yarses will already be over the States
  7. Old26
    Old26 6 September 2018 17: 23
    0
    Quote: Ros 56
    This is what range you need to possess, and secondly, what will they drag the company or platoon of fortune tellers with them, otherwise how will they know from which direction and from which bush there will be a start? The delirium of the striped generals turns into a loud ringing from the contractors, who then share with them.

    Not so nonsense. Although at the current level, it is unlikely to be realized. In the 80s - 90s of the last century, work was simultaneously conducted in the USSR and the USA to create an air-based laser. They called this topic ABL, we have A-60. They had to have a Boeing as a carrier, our IL-76.
    Range, if my cheating doesn’t fail, should have been about 600 km. The problems were not resolved, since it was easier to find countermeasures than resolving the issue. Nevertheless, the laser had a place to be and in some situations could be used to hit targets. But again, there were more problems than opportunities to solve them. But it’s rather difficult to call it nonsense.
    But to place the same laser on a UAV seems to be nonsense. If the plane has not "grown together", it is not necessary to expect that the UAV will have all tip-top
    1. igorbrsv
      igorbrsv 6 September 2018 18: 11
      0
      Perhaps this UAV itself should be worth, and the size of an intercontinental ballistic missile
  8. Berkut24
    Berkut24 6 September 2018 19: 17
    0
    I can congratulate Rosatom on the construction of a floating power plant. With curiosity, I expect from the Americans a flying unmanned power station. For in the energy sector all the main problems with the laser. Masterpiece drank greens.
    1. igorbrsv
      igorbrsv 6 September 2018 20: 03
      0
      I can hardly imagine a flying icebreaker. But as I prove to myself about a 1MW flying laser.
      1. Vadim237
        Vadim237 6 September 2018 23: 10
        +2
        There was already such a 1MW flying laser
  9. Avior
    Avior 6 September 2018 20: 32
    +1
    it seems that people do not quite understand.
    500 kW is a pulse.
    if the pulse time is 2 s, and the charge time is 20, then the power supply should be roughly 50 kW.
    For example, the power of electric welding is 3-5 kW - what would it be clear what is 500 kW.
    and it will fly not over Siberia, but over the area of ​​nuclear submarines on duty with the BR, or over areas of the possible launch of missiles of a different type — from tactical to anti-ship missiles.
    1. igorbrsv
      igorbrsv 7 September 2018 17: 31
      0
      I want to fix you 20 hours, not seconds
  10. Forestol
    Forestol 7 September 2018 07: 31
    -1
    Here, of course, huge specialists gathered. Let me remind you modestly about MHD generators powered by rocket engines. At us, in PRO-SPRN, they had to replace the power station at hour X. There are probably already compact models ...
    1. igorbrsv
      igorbrsv 7 September 2018 17: 33
      0
      What is the size of 50 kW at least