Space war in the coming years?

Space war in the coming years?The Pentagon diligently does not advertise its new agency, the Space Defense Directorate. Also, if it is not hidden, then any information about its activities is definitely not advertised. And yet the mere existence of a directorate specializing in space war cannot fail to arouse serious concerns. After all, this is already the first step towards the outbreak of hostilities, which mankind has not yet known. And it is far from a fact that at least someone will have the opportunity to survive in such hostilities. Director of the National Directorate of Military Space Intelligence Bruce Carlson argues that this is only to protect the United States from an increasing number of dangers.

That is why the US is constantly increasing its space power, motivating it with the need to improve defense systems against possible aggression from China. They argue that the Chinese may well begin to steal secret military targets from orbit and all weapons created are used only to prevent such incidents.

Serious developments are underway in the field of creating a completely new weaponswhich can be widely used in space war - lasers.
Not so long ago, researchers from the United States managed to develop an original scheme that allows you to create a laser beam, the power of which will be enough to burn any target. The main difference of this device from the previously existing prototypes is compactness and low weight. The Excalibur laser weapon is a project of the Agency for the development of advanced defense weapons. Engineers report that they plan to create an installation capable of creating a beam with power up to 100 kilowatts! Moreover, it will be powered by the vehicle’s on-board power supply network — a car, an airplane, or an armored personnel carrier.

It should be clarified that the most powerful combat lasers work using a chemical reaction. That is, to give the beam, they have to use reagents. An example of such a laser is the Airborne megawatt laser, capable of shooting down a ballistic missile in flight.

However, the military does not want to deal with weapons, the use of which is possible only in the presence of hazardous reagents. That is why the generals require combat lasers that work solely on electricity. But the current solid-state system capable of delivering a 100 beam in kilowatts takes up quite a lot of space, due to which it can only be installed in a truck. A helicopter or a fighter simply can not accommodate it.

But the Excalibur laser gun managed to circumvent such a limitation, since its operation uses the principles of single-mode laser diodes capable of working both independently and when combined with laser amplifiers.

Due to this principle of action, a higher efficiency of the laser system is ensured. That is, it consumes significantly less energy than any other samples. However, here the need to bring a large number of rays into one, which would not lose its low divergence, forces one to pay for efficiency. Interference and diffraction seriously interfere with the operation of this laser.

That is why scientists have created a light analogue of the phased array (phased antenna array). On radars, PAR can both focus the beam and direct the angle of its deflection when the antenna itself is still.

The authors of the project are confident that the created analogue HEADLIGHT will be able to combine a large number of beams from laser diodes into one most powerful beam. It must be said that such a beam can be used in different areas - target designation, locations, communications, as well as a laser weapon with a beam power output of 100 kilowatts of power.

This equipment can already be inscribed in the contours of the aircraft. Experts say that the size and weight of the weapon, which will be created by the Excalibur technology, will be reduced about ten times relative to the size and weight of the chemical laser of exactly the same power.

Today, Americans are working on samples that can work at least in the laboratory. By the end of the year, a demonstration of a three-kilowatt prototype of Excalibur is planned. But by the year 2012, it is possible to create new laser amplifiers that will increase the power of the beam to 500 kilowatts.

Also under development and over the spacecraft protection. The US military plans to use them in order to control certain operational zones of the atmosphere, as well as geostationary orbits. To strike at the observed targets, either ground-based aircraft or space-based lasers with high beam power will be used. However, the possibility of a nuclear strike is not excluded.
Michael Ross
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