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Cordy

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One year slippage?

 

antigravite

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More sonic attacks against US diplomats at the heart of Europe:

Hi.
This adressed, attack pattern has puzzled me for a while and is very worrisome in today's highly unstable context. It reminds me of that non-lethal weapons craze from the mid-1990s. I the US, the key person associated with that (and other quixotic subjects), was now retired US Army colonel John B. Alexander (yep, the project JEDI guy, that's him…). Any such attack, if one day, clearly and unequivocally shown to be associated with a state-controlled actor, would spiral down into a symmetrical bloody diplomatic response at best. Fear it or not, law of retaliation would likely be enforced in this case. That's how this whole business works and it really could go very South, all the way down to the pole's nadir.

A.
 

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Summarizing the findings of an internal CIA task force dedicated to investigating the cases, the official said, "In this extensive investigation we have so far not found evidence of state-actor involvement in any incident," adding, "[W]e assess it unlikely that a foreign actor, including Russia, is conducting a sustained, worldwide campaign, harming U.S. personnel with a weapon or mechanism."

However, the official emphasized, the agency's task force would continue investigating a small number of cases whose cause could not be determined. In those cases, the official said, the CIA has still "not ruled out the involvement of a foreign actor."


A yet unsuspected effect of Directed Energy: digging holes?
 

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Hi.

Laser Pod Wargame


The U.S. Air Force recently held a wargame that saw pilots flying simulated missions that involved the combined use of podded airborne laser weapons and two undisclosed “future kinetic concepts” in a virtual reality battlefield environment. The wargame highlights the service’s efforts to develop virtual testing environments for use in weapon systems development and its increasing interest in using these digital spaces for use in training.
According to an Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) press release, the wargame was conducted at Kirtland Air Force Base between January 24 and 28 in conjunction with AFRL’s Munitions Directorate. It was held as part of the joint Directed Energy and Kinetic Energy Directed Energy Utility Concept Experiment, or DEKE DEUCE, which is designed to explore “synergies between directed energy and kinetic concepts in the future battlespace.” This most recent experiment saw pilots, weapon systems officers, and air battle managers teaming together to operate in a series of what AFRL calls “virtual vignettes” that explored the combined use of “an airborne high energy laser pod and two future kinetic concepts.”

[...]While AFRL states one of the technologies tested in this virtual experiment was a high-energy laser pod, it’s unknown what the other two “future kinetic concepts” could be. We have reached out to Kirtland Air Force Base for more information about DEKE DEUCE and the notional weapon systems tested in this wargame.
 

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A P-8A Poseidon - a maritime patrol aircraft - detected a laser emanating from a People's Liberation Army – Navy (PLA-N) vessel, the Defence Department said in a statement.

"Illumination of the aircraft by the Chinese vessel is a serious safety incident," the department said. "Acts like this have the potential to endanger lives. We strongly condemn unprofessional and unsafe military conduct."


The Chinese vessel was sailing east with another PLA-N ship through the Arafura Sea at the time of the incident, the department said. The sea lies between the north coast of Australia and the south coast of New Guinea.

 

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Repeated Sonic attacks close to the White house:


Not even close... IN the White House:
 

stealthflanker

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Yeah.. for Grad like rocket... the system according to my estimate can engage 12 targets and may cost about 28 Million USD. The cost per shot however is only about 2 cents which seems favorable against hundreds of thousands dollar worth Tamir interceptor missile. and perhaps cheaper than the Grad itself.

It's more like perspective in how people see cost vs effectiveness.
 

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Cordy

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Yeah.. for Grad like rocket... the system according to my estimate can engage 12 targets and may cost about 28 Million USD. The cost per shot however is only about 2 cents which seems favorable against hundreds of thousands dollar worth Tamir interceptor missile. and perhaps cheaper than the Grad itself.

It's more like perspective in how people see cost vs effectiveness.

Think your attachment figures looks very optimistic, cost estimate of $29 million for a 500 kW laser, do they quote a source for the figure, have no feel for what a 500 kW would cost but the LM Helios, a 60-kilowatt laser with room to grow to perhaps 150 kilowatts, the two development units costing $150 million, $75 million each and looking at a laser 3 to 4 the power of Helios (Helios currently running two years late and with only enough power to take out thin skinned UAVs, would have thought Grad rocket much tougher target requiring maybe twice the time on target to burn through as quoted in attachment).

Range 10 km, have seen ~<5 km mentioned for a 50 kW laser, understand lasers subject to 4th power law due to the dispersion of the beam power over increased range? so twice the range requires 16 times power which would equal 800 kW not 500 kW so as able to take out a UAV at ~10 km.

PS pic of the new LM Army A4 Sentinel radar on display, noted the cloud cover so laser range would be limited to height of cloud not the 10 km quoted, don't expect would be of concern in Israel with wall to wall sunshine for much of the time, but if Hamas chose attack when bad weather with Grad rockets it would matter.
 

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stealthflanker

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Think your attachment figures looks very optimistic, cost estimate of $29 million for a 500 kW laser, do they quote a source for the figure, have no feel for what a 500 kW would cost but the LM Helios, a 60-kilowatt laser with room to grow to perhaps 150 kilowatts, the two development units costing $150 million, $75 million each and looking at a laser 3 to 4 the power of Helios (Helios currently running two years late and with only enough power to take out thin skinned UAVs, would have thought Grad rocket much tougher target requiring maybe twice the time on target to burn through as quoted in attachment).

Well yeah it's very optimistic as i only have 4 cost elements and discounting the RnD. Now if only i can find more sources.

The Grad tho can be assumed to be like Solid fuel ICBM with hardness of some 24 KJ/sqcm.
 

bring_it_on

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There is very little recurring cost information for even single digit production runs for HEL in the 50 - 300 kW class. That will change soon. We'll know exactly what the US Army intends to pay for its 300 kW class (250 - 300 kW) laser weapon systems. The production contract for the first four systems will be awarded before the end of this calendar year. Keep in mind that these are single digit production runs so expect significant reductions in unit cost as these efforts transition to a PoR and execute an acquisition strategy. Lasers will be quite cheap if you intend to use them. They will be expensive if you don't intend to use them. A fully loaded SHORAD launcher (IFPC) will be worth more than $5 Million each time it is reloaded. IFPC HEL in comparison is a one time cost. Then there is the 4+4 DE-MSHORAD contract which will be awarded this year as well. But then looking at OTA contracts and trying to figure out unit costs has its limits. These programs are not yet in rate production, so you can't really nail down a realistic unit cost until an acquisition strategy is presented and they get out of the one-off single digit purchases and ask industry to present a sustained acquisition strategy. For most of these programs, that is expected to happen in FY-24 or FY-25. Till then the cost will be inflated.
 
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Cordy

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Think your attachment figures looks very optimistic, cost estimate of $29 million for a 500 kW laser, do they quote a source for the figure, have no feel for what a 500 kW would cost but the LM Helios, a 60-kilowatt laser with room to grow to perhaps 150 kilowatts, the two development units costing $150 million, $75 million each and looking at a laser 3 to 4 the power of Helios (Helios currently running two years late and with only enough power to take out thin skinned UAVs, would have thought Grad rocket much tougher target requiring maybe twice the time on target to burn through as quoted in attachment).

Well yeah it's very optimistic as i only have 4 cost elements and discounting the RnD. Now if only i can find more sources.

The Grad tho can be assumed to be like Solid fuel ICBM with hardness of some 24 KJ/sqcm.
Would it be safe to assume why the Army specifications require a 300kW laser so that able to deliver necessary power of ~> 24 kJ per sq cm for 3 or more seconds at 4 to 5 km range to be an effective C-RAM system, further assumption the Army 50 kW and Navy 60 kW lasers only capable of delivering 4 to 5 kJ power to take out Class 1 and 2 plastic UAVs at 4 to 5 km.

PS Of interest Air Force investing in UAVs controlled by AI Hivemind autonomy, think controlled expendable kamikaze UAVs might be a cheaper option than expensive lasers to take out enemy drones using the cheap sophisticated sensors developed by Google etc at cost of $ billions for self driving cars, other pluses they would still operate in bad weather, cloud cover etc whereas lasers can't and use limited power not creating IR target for counter fire.

Kamikaze UAVs reminds me of why the first a/c fighters were developed in WWI to counter and take out balloons and the first a/c used for artillery targeting, spotting.


https://breakingdefense.com/2022/02/shield-ai-to-work-on-swarming-drones-autonomous-rotorcraft-for-air-force/


 

bring_it_on

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Army's DE-MSHORAD is stated by the SHIELD team to offer greater stand off range against the UAS target compared to the Stinger-PF available to them on the kinetic MSHORAD platform. That's 50kW.
 

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Army's DE-MSHORAD is stated by the SHIELD team to offer greater stand off range against the UAS target compared to the Stinger-PF available to them on the kinetic MSHORAD platform. That's 50kW.
Wikipedia Stinger "It has a targeting range of up to 4,800 m and can engage low altitude enemy threats at up to 3,800 m" Think remember Raytheon quoting range of their 50 kW laser as ~4.5 km, how Stinger 2.25 lbs warhead energy kJ compares to that of the laser ~ 4 to 5 kJ not sure but expect substantially larger?
 

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Of interest is the article on War Zone "UAE Shows Off A Compact Box Launcher Concept Full Of 21 AI-Enabled Swarming Suicide Drones" Feb 21, which shows what would be possible if appropiate sensors fitted to Hunter drone to turn it into a suicide drone to attack the Iranian/Houthi drones that have been used recently attacking the UAE

Would appear above UAE drones might be an order magnitude cheaper than the unknown cost of a 50 kW laser for the DE M SHORAD for targeting drones as is the laser much lower cost if compared to the IM-SHORAD with its Stingers "worth more than $5 Million each time it is reloaded - @bring_it_on ". Wikipedia quotes cost of Stinger as only $38,000 each so missing something on build up of the $5 million figure (of current interest Ukraine urgently asking for Stingers, don't think the 50 kW lasers capable as its 'warhead' so low in power would not be able to take out the Russian a/c and helicopters as Stinger).

Also of interest the low weight 17 lbs/cheap UAE Hunter 2-S suicide drones are said to be capable of attacking either static or moving targets and can be deployed in seconds, the DE M SHORAD 50 kW laser appears to have no similar secondary ground strike capability. Cost wise the Hunter suicide drones appear to be a much better option than a low powered laser at short range.

 

bring_it_on

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Would appear above UAE drones might be an order magnitude cheaper than the unknown cost of a 50 kW laser for the DE M SHORAD for targeting drones as is the laser much lower cost if compared to the IM-SHORAD with its Stingers "worth more than $5 Million each time it is reloaded - @bring_it_on ". Wikipedia quotes cost of Stinger as only $38,000 each so missing something on build up of the $5 million figure (of current interest Ukraine urgently asking for Stingers, don't think the 50 kW lasers capable as its 'warhead' so low in power would not be able to take out the Russian a/c and helicopters as Stinger).

Confusing the cost of a loaded IFPC launcher to a loaded MSHORAD launcher most probably. But that is still a stupid comparison. These things aren't going to be defeated by any one system alone but via a layered approach that includes High Power Microwaves, counter ISR, sUAS and LM focused jamming, and HEL, kinetic interceptors, guns and most importantly tactics etc . Any analysis that is not looking at an overall layered approach and its effectiveness against a range of threats is completely missing it and not worth discussing.

How effective is the UAE loitering munitions? What kinetic and non-kinetic threats has it been tested against? What makes it unique and difficult to develop as a threat system for testing, development and training of these sUAS, and C-UAS SHORAD systems?
 

Cordy

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Would appear above UAE drones might be an order magnitude cheaper than the unknown cost of a 50 kW laser for the DE M SHORAD for targeting drones as is the laser much lower cost if compared to the IM-SHORAD with its Stingers "worth more than $5 Million each time it is reloaded - @bring_it_on ". Wikipedia quotes cost of Stinger as only $38,000 each so missing something on build up of the $5 million figure (of current interest Ukraine urgently asking for Stingers, don't think the 50 kW lasers capable as its 'warhead' so low in power would not be able to take out the Russian a/c and helicopters as Stinger).

Confusing the cost of a loaded IFPC launcher to a loaded MSHORAD launcher most probably. But that is still a stupid comparison. These things aren't going to be defeated by any one system alone but via a layered approach that includes High Power Microwaves, counter ISR, sUAS and LM focused jamming, and HEL, kinetic interceptors, guns and most importantly tactics etc . Any analysis that is not looking at an overall layered approach and its effectiveness against a range of threats is completely missing it and not worth discussing.

How effective is the UAE loitering munitions? What kinetic and non-kinetic threats has it been tested against? What makes it unique and difficult to develop as a threat system for testing, development and training of these sUAS, and C-UAS SHORAD systems?
The big plus of lasers is the claim that they cost is only a couple of dollars per shot, but the actual cost of the laser is unknown, but if say ~ $5 to $10 million for a short range 50 kW laser with a very low power 'warhead' and so resulting in limited capabilities, unable to operate in adverse weather, low cloud, rain, snow (Ukraine) etc laser beginning look very expensive for what it gives you.

So my argument is that the Army who are investing perhaps tens of $ millions or so in development and trials of the limited power and capability of the 50 kW laser for the DE M SHORAD they should have also have looked at alternatives including drones similar to the UAE concept of numerous low cost/low weight suicide drones, thinking of their swarm capability for which Air Force have been investing in and Army could use to counter mass attacks by enemy drones plus the new gen low cost high frequency 4/5D radars on a chip developed by Waymo and others for self driving cars. Expect drones would have more range and with the 4D/5D radars give HTK capability, the drones also give the possibility of being multi-mission as with the UAE drones to attack ground targets, as everything a trade-off but to me at the moment drones look to offer better war fighting capabilities at lower price than a low powered laser, it will be of interest to see if Raytheon and others can drive down cost of laser down to $1 million or so to make them a possible option.
 

bring_it_on

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I assume the US Army has the ability to test systems and determine future path based on hard testing that they do. It turns out they've actually tested the 50kW system against its threat set. Something like 400+ live engagements with the initial prototypes delivered last summer. They are going to do a few dozen more this Spring. And more once additional systems are delivered. Then they will deploy the initial systems to Europe and get soldier feedback before they determine the enduring system characteristics and performance. That they, after actually doing this assessment against the clearly defined threat, have determined its useful enough to not only continue buying the initial planned prototypes, but increase the size of that order would suggest that they actually liked what they saw and see the benefit of these systems being 1/3 of the entire deployed MSHORAD systems.

Cost arguments make no sense when looking at prototype systems produced at single digit production runs. Its absurd. Show me a program of record with an APUC before crying about cost being too high. But hey let's keep making these and using an obscure UAE drone program (with questionable effectiveness) to drive home the point. DE-MSHORAD is a Counter UAS, and Counter RAM (particularly mortar) capability. It was tested against this threat set. It did well. There are other C-sUAS systems included in the Army portfolio including C-sUAS high energy laser and microwave DE systems. All these will function as part of a layered system along with C-sUAS, and C-UAS SHORAD kinetic systems like MSHORAD, Stinger-PF, Stinger replacement, Coyote block 1 - block X and other systems.
 
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Cordy

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Its difficult to come to reasoned conclusions as Army are not releasing kJ sq/cm numbers for its lasers, the power of its laser "warheads", from what little is known, expect a 50 kW laser might max out at ~5 kJ sq/cm or so which would be limited to burning through plastic to take out its threat set of Class I and II UAS, think as a C-RAM system will have zero capability due to lack of power to burn through mortar bombs, Grad rockets and artillery shells (stealthflanker "The Grad tho can be assumed to be like Solid fuel ICBM with hardness of some 24 KJ/sqcm).

As said before the low cost per shot is the big plus of lasers, but if the actual cost of the laser itself too expensive that argument collapses and as yet none of the companies building lasers have hinted at how they would bring costs down from current multi $ millions with large numbers which is not a hopeful sign.

The other big operational drawback as with all lasers is they don't operate in bad weather, reminds me of lessons from history the WWII Battle of the Bulge Dec '44 to Jan '45 where the German Army mounted its last major offensive battle with 400,000 plus troops, the allied air forces were grounded due to the bad weather and only when weather improved they were able fly again and with stiff resistance from US Army able to stop the advance, US Army suffered 89,000 causalities, 19,000 dead.

So don't understand why Army investing so many tens of $millions in low powered prototype lasers when they cancelled before completing development after initial success in trials of one of the alternatives the Picatinny Arsenal Extended Area Protection and Survivability Integrated Demonstration, or EAPS ID with its 50 mm cannon with mid flight course correction shells with radar guidance, which would operate in bad weather :)
 

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Was it 'BoB' no-fly weather that convinced US to release proximity-fused artillery shells for air-burst against infantry ?
The failure rate was high, but the efficacy of those that worked sufficed...

Also, though may be 'urban legend', a 'dud' taken to Berlin stunned their High Command by its mass-produced technical prowess...
 

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Pure fantasy land, summary starts off by listing problems with kinetic missiles and then saying can be solved with lasers powered by portable nuclear reactors :)
 

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This should have come much earlier, and been sent to Ukraine. They need lots of them. I wonder if a network of these could also play a civilian Starshot role as a two-fer. At least two different lasers per construction site while you are there.
 

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