Laser weapons: A distant target

Laser technology may yet yield the weapons of the not-so-distant future. For the moment, it’s all R&D business as usual. Earlier this week, both Boeing and Northrop Grumman put out statements about their ongoing work on U.S. Army’s High Energy Laser Technology Demonstrator, or HEL TD. And for Boeing, it was also a chance to crow about a contract win: $36 million to continue its work on a HEL TD design.

With that money, Boeing says it will first finish its design work, and then move on to building and testing a ruggedized beam control system on a heavy-duty truck (specifically, the Army’s Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck). The defense contractor finished the preliminary design of the beam control system earlier this summer. Boeing also plans to develop the systems-engineering requirements for the complete HEL TD.

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Laser weapons: A distant target

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