Laser beam: Lockheed Martin to design high-energy laser weapon system for US jets – TomoNews

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Laser beam: Lockheed Martin to design high-energy laser weapon system for US jets – TomoNews
BETHESDA, MARYLAND — The U.S. is finally taking a page from Star Wars and is now looking to equip its fighter planes with high-energy lasers.

CNBC reports that Lockheed Martin has been awarded a $26.3 million contract to design, develop, and build a high-energy laser weapon for the U.S. Air Force’s SHiELD program.

The company delivered a 60-kilowatt laser for U.S. Army ground vehicles early this year, and will produce a smaller system to test on tactical aircraft by 2021.

Airborne laser weapons can defend against threats from enemy missiles, boosting the self-defense capabilities of military jets.

The Lockheed Martin laser is one of three subsystems that make up the SHiELD program. A beam control system is being developed by Northrop Grumman, while a pod to power and cool the laser is being designed by Boeing.
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