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Talon Gold


You're Mad, You Are.....
Senior Member
May 1, 2007
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in a message here, http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,4617.msg37203.html#msg37203

i wrote,
while looking at the PDF linked to by flateric in the 'DARPA Vulture' thread, here,


i saw this picture.
a quick search on designation-systems.net gave me the following,

A project to develop a low-energy laser to demonstrate acquisition and tracking of targets from space and to precisely point a narrow laser beam. An essential prerequisite for deploying a high-energy laser weapon system. Involves Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and USAF SAMSO, Army Missile R&D Command.

so now we have a name for the cover illustration, also seen on page 117.
more googling awaits...


it seems i was wrong, :-\ :-X :'(

this from http://www.fas.org/spp/starwars/program/sbl.htm

The ATP technologies required (sensors, optics, processors, etc.) have been validated through a series of component and integrated testing programs over the last decade. In 1985, the Talon Gold brassboard operated sub-scale versions of all the elements needed in the operational ATP system including separate pointing and tracking apertures, an illuminator, an inertial reference gyro system, fire control mode logic, sensors and trackers. Talon Gold achieved performance levels equivalent to that needed for the SBL.

and this from http://www.realestate3d.com/gps/USSpaceCommand-Lexicon.html

Triad BMDO-managed ARPA directed energy program:

- Alpha is a 5 MW hydrogen fluoride chemical laser

- Lode is a large (4M) optics demonstration experiment

- TALON GOLD is a pointing and tracking telescope experiment to evaluate the ability of a satellite-borne low-energy laser to track potential targets accurately (0.2 microradians). Terminated Jan 85.

and lastly this from http://www.globalsecurity.org/space/systems/atp-fc.htm

Talon Gold was intended to demonstrate precision tracking and pointing in space for targeting satellites and boosters. After spending about $26 million on Talon Gold, SDIO canceled the experiment because the cost estimates for integration and launch had increased an additional $600 million.

so it seems the image in the DARPA pdf was just a generic one to illustrate the general nature of the program, that is, what the outcome of the research would be. interestingly, the same image is shown on the fas.org page, and the filename is trw.jpg, so perhaps it shows TRW's design for a space based laser. over to you guys...


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