F/A-18E HEL pod concept

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F/A-18E HEL pod concept from January, 2007 US Navy Office of Naval Research paper.
http://www.dtic.mil/ndia/2007psa_psts/Deitchman.pdf
 

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100 KW Fiber Pod Solid State Laser concept - again from ONR, 2006
http://www.dtic.mil/ndia/2006psa_winter_roundtable/deitchman.pdf
 

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It's hard to separate fact from hype when it comes to high-energy lasers.

JHPSSL - Joint High Power Solid State Laser - started out with plans to build a 100kW-class weapon able to fit in a pod. The program will end this year with demonstration in a laboratory of just the 100kW electric laser, at a size that might fit in a transport aircraft, but won't go in a pod on a fighter. The technology is diode-pumped slab lasers. The contractors at Northrop and Textron

HELLADS - High-Energy Liquid Laser Air Defense System (a DARPA program) - aims to demonstrate a 150kW-class solid-state laser weapon system on the ground by 2010, complete with beam control and fire control, in a package that would fit inside one of the B-1's three bomb bays. The Air Force Electric plans, but hasn't funded, a flight test. Batteries would provide power and thermal batteries would provide cooling. The contractors are General Atomics (unspecified "liquid laser" technology) and Textron (a version of its JHPSSL laser technology).

RELI - Robust Electric Laser Initiative - the Air Force Research Laboratory has just kicked off this four-year programme to demonstrate high-energy, potentially eye-safe, fibre laser technology - the next step in solid-state laser technology, apparently. No contractors yet, as contracts haven't been awarded, but I think it's just a lab demonstration.

So, there is a lot of operator interest in high-energy lasers, but to me there still seems to be a lot of noodling in laboratories by scientists and not much progress towards real weapon, let alone one that can fit in a pod...
 
CammNut said:
JHPSSL - Joint High Power Solid State Laser

dr.evil.laser.jpg


CammNut said:
HELLADS - High-Energy Liquid Laser Air Defense System (a DARPA program) - aims to demonstrate a 150kW-class solid-state laser weapon system on the ground by 2010, complete with beam control and fire control, in a package that would fit inside one of the B-1's three bomb bays.

thumb.real-genius-laser.jpg
 
The Real Genius scenario would just be too damn funny. They even have it torching a dictator in the movie. Like what's been discussed with the C-130 laser project that's being worked on.
 
sferrin said:
The Real Genius scenario would just be too damn funny. They even have it torching a dictator in the movie. Like what's been discussed with the C-130 laser project that's being worked on.

I'd really loved "Real Genius" movie, especially the Val Kilmer young scientist (even the soundtrack "Number One" played by Chaz Jankel)....ok sorry for th OT....
 
sferrin said:
They even have it torching a dictator in the movie.

The movie showed a Latin American dictator or drug baron getting instantly vaporized by a space-based laser; vaporizing a human body would be well beyond what even a ground-based laser could accomplish. An airborne laser could, however, still be used to kill individuals. The practical value of that is obvious: if you see bin Laden or some similar walking about in public, you could light him up with minimal colateral damage. Unlike a missle or a bomb, there'd be virtually no travel time, and the only explosions would be of any pyrotechnic devices he might have on him. And of course there'd be the psychological value of such a weapon... some terrorist leader on Hajj, walking around the Ka'aba with his entourage, thinking himself pretty special, suddenly bursts into flames and dies a horrible screaming death in broad daylight? Or, even better, while giving a speech on live TV...
 
Orionblamblam said:
And of course there'd be the psychological value of such a weapon... some terrorist leader on Hajj, walking around the Ka'aba with his entourage, thinking himself pretty special, suddenly bursts into flames and dies a horrible screaming death in broad daylight? Or, even better, while giving a speech on live TV...

Ahh, yes, the old Smite-The-Evil-With-Lightning routine always was a crowd pleaser ;D

Regards & all,

Thomas L. Nielsen
Denmark
 
Orionblamblam said:
sferrin said:
They even have it torching a dictator in the movie.

The movie showed a Latin American dictator or drug baron getting instantly vaporized by a space-based laser; vaporizing a human body would be well beyond what even a ground-based laser could accomplish. An airborne laser could, however, still be used to kill individuals. The practical value of that is obvious: if you see bin Laden or some similar walking about in public, you could light him up with minimal colateral damage. Unlike a missle or a bomb, there'd be virtually no travel time, and the only explosions would be of any pyrotechnic devices he might have on him. And of course there'd be the psychological value of such a weapon... some terrorist leader on Hajj, walking around the Ka'aba with his entourage, thinking himself pretty special, suddenly bursts into flames and dies a horrible screaming death in broad daylight? Or, even better, while giving a speech on live TV...

It's been a while. :) I just remembered some dude getting torched but the guy that keeps popping in my head was the one that gets a bomb in his lap in Hot Shots.
 
Nice concepts but as the estimable CammNut points out, that's all they are until the power and efficiency of the laser get kicked up a notch. For now, there is a certain amount of AND THEN A MIRACLE OCCURS in there.
 
So that laser pod would be used for strafing basically (except drastically more targeted, and way longer a range.)? What kind of range does this thing have anyway? (Let's hope I don't get torched for asking that :p )


KJ Lesnick
 
10 to 20 km. There's asome discussion of what you can actuially do with a 100 kw laser here -

http://blog.wired.com/defense/2008/09/tactial-laser-l.html

"So if the beam stays on the same spot of the target for a full two seconds –- which is a very long time under the circumstances –- it would in theory boil off a disc around one centimeter deep. In real life, the laser would be much less effective, as smoke and steam would rapidly degrade the effectiveness of the beam. Also in real life, the energy is likely to be focused at the center of the beam. And flesh is not water. And nobody is going to hand around being lasered that long… But we're just trying to get a general idea of orders of magnitude here.

Bullets are lethal when they damage a vital organ (like the heart or the brain) or when they cause rapid blood loss. Most likely, a laser of this type would not easily be able to go deep enough to affect a vital organ. Plus, the laser would will be self-cauterizing, with the heat sealing off blood vessels. It's not going to kill you quickly."
 
Well, now we have SSL laser (defensive? offensive? or both?) proposed for B-2 as well...and for a bunch of other things...
http://www.analysiscenter.northropgrumman.com/files/Operational_Implications_of_Laser_Weapons.pdf
 

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AFTC gains new test capability

Published Oct. 28, 2022
By Jill Pickett
AEDC Public Affairs
ARNOLD AIR FORCE BASE, Tenn. --
As weapon system designers continue to innovate for the defense of the nation, the men and women of the Air Force Test Center must advance the test capabilities available to develop and prove the superiority of those systems needed to meet the demands of the National Defense Strategy.

Members of the 716th Test Squadron and Integrated Analysis Branch of the 804th Test Group of Arnold Engineering Development Complex, have done just that with the assistance of an industry partner through the Small Business Innovation Research and Commercialization Readiness Pilot programs. In March, a new aero-optical test capability was transitioned to the 716 TS after a successful demonstration of the technology.

AEDC contracted with MZA Associated Corp. through the SBIR and CRP programs to develop a system that can accurately obtain wavefront information anywhere around aircraft models in transonic and supersonic wind tunnels.

“This final demonstration has been the culmination of many years of development and testing in an effort to create an aero-optical test capability in the AEDC wind tunnels,” said Dr. Rich Roberts, flight commander of the Store Separation Flight, 716 TS. “The ability to obtain this data will be useful to defense programs that will need to transmit laser-directed energy.”

Using the new system, the Integrated Directed Energy Aero-optical Surrogate, or IDEAS, combined with the Captive Trajectory Omni-directional Reflector, or CapTOR, will allow test personnel to characterize how the laser beam will behave and, if necessary, how to precondition it.

“IDEAS brings together MZA’s aero-optical diagnostic sensors along with our tracking and gimbal control software to provide full field-of-regard wavefront measurements,” said Dr. Matt Whiteley, vice president and senior scientist with MZA. “IDEAS allows for measurement geometries that are difficult to obtain using tunnel windows, including in the deep wake of the aircraft. It provides the complete picture of the environment in which a laser must operate.”

IDEAS and CapTOR build upon a test conducted last year of a portion of the system called Aero-Isolation Measurement Sensor, or AIMS.

AIMS utilized a miniaturized optical bench, and a laser directed through a window in the tunnel wall. IDEAS used in conjunction with CapTOR allows system instrumentation, including a target for tracking, to be contained within the tunnel, which enables improved accuracy and efficiency. The tracking ability allows test personnel to simulate laser sources or target locations.

“This diagnostic instrument will enable efficient, accurate tests,” said Taylor Swanson, Integrated Analysis Branch and manager of the directed energy development effort. “It is a great example of the ability of small businesses to develop capabilities for the Air Force and of the Technology Branch working with the small business to transition that capability to the test branches.”
220407-O-F3405-0001.jpg
 
Well, it sounds obvious to me that the Phantom E would do a great platform to shoot a laser from. Think at the canoe under the nose hosting the gun.

Oh, wait... Should I say PHaser
 
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