Rheinmetall Tests 50 kW Laser

RSS

Rheinmetall announced yesterday that it tested a 50 kW high-energy laser (HEL) technology demonstrator at the end of November. The test at the company’s Ochsenboden proving ground in Switzerland involved detecting, tracking and engaging a target in scenarios including air defense and countering rockets, artillery, mortars and asymmetric threats.

Rheinmetall photos

The technology demonstrator consisted of two functional models: a 30 kW weapon station integrated into an Oerlikon revolver gun air defense turret for static and dynamic tests, coupled with an Oerlikon Skyguard fire control unit; and a 20 kW weapon station integrated into a first-generation revolver gun turret. It cut through a 15 mm-thick steel girder at a range of 1,000 meters, shot down several diving target UAVs at a range of two kilometers flying over 50 meters a second, and engaged an 82 mm-diameter steel ball representing a mortar round and traveling around 50 meters a second, according to Rheinmetall.

As the next step, Rheinmetall plans to build a 60 kW technology demonstrator in 2013 and integrate 35mm Ahead revolver guns into the system to identify and study possible synergies between laser weapons and automatic cannon. The company will also continue work on mobile HEL weapons on different platforms.

In September 2011, Rheinmetall shot down an unmanned aerial vehicle with a 10-kW laser weapon demonstrator and sank a moving rubber raft with a 1-kW laser weapon module mounted on a TM 170-type vehicle.

Please or Register to post comments.

What's Ares?

Aviation Week's defense blog

From The Archives

Aviation Week is approaching its 100th anniversary in 2016. In a series of blogs, our editors highlight editorial content from the magazine's long and rich history.

 

Aug 27, 2015
blog

Aviation Week Lifts Veil On Boeing B-52 Bomber (1952) 11

In 1952, Aviation Week provided the first details on the new Boeing B-52 bomber....More
Aug 14, 2015
blog

Bonanza Travel Pays 3

The legendary Beechcraft Bonanza has an impressive production record, so perhaps the marketers back in 1949 were onto something when they coined the phrase "Bonanza travel pays."...More
Aug 14, 2015
blog

Venerable Boeing 727 Prototype To Fly Again 28

The most famous 727, the prototype aircraft which would join United as N7001U, was delivered to the airline in October 1964 having served its time as a Boeing test aircraft....More
Aug 13, 2015
blog

Aviation Week And The Bomb

Aviation News did not predict how nuclear weapons would change the world. But neither did anyone else....More
Aug 13, 2015
blog

Collins Radar Takes The Ups And Downs Out Of Flying

Turbulence? Rockwell Collins had a solution for those bumpy rides in the early 80s with its WXR-700 Doppler Weather Radar....More
Blog Archive
Penton Corporate

Sponsored Introduction Continue on to (or wait seconds) ×