Lockheed Martin Trials Next Generation Laser-Based Missile/UAV Defense System
November 30, 2012 12:40 PM
comment(s) - last by
Using high energy lasers could reduce the cost of shooting down missiles and UAVs, while improving accuracy
The Middle Eastern nation of Israel is currently in the midst of a dire real world test of the
most ambitious missile defense system
in history --
. While the system cost billions to deploy, in the recent conflict along the Gaza Strip border it has paid off. The system has intercepted an estimated 80 to 90 percent of missiles that are directed at populated targets (as the enemy's missiles are improvised and hand-launched, many land harmlessly in the desert; the system ignores those marks).
In the U.S., Lockheed Martin Corp. (
), one of the world's largest defense contractors, is testing a high-tech missile defense system that could one day replace or supplement missile-based interceptor systems like Iron Dome.
The Lockheed system is dubbed the "
Area Defense Anti-Munitions (ADAM)
system" and packs a powerful 10-kilowatt laser capable of destroying targets up to 2 km (1.24 mi) away.
In a field test of ADAM, the system "successfully engaged" (sounds like a hit, but not necessarily destruction of) an unmanned aerial vehicle at a distance of 1.5 km (0.9 mi). The system also "destroyed" not one, but four "small-caliber rocket targets" at a range of 2 km.
This is the image seen from the ADAM system as it locks onto the UAV.
Lockheed Martin developed the entire modular software/hardware package that powers targeting and interception. The system uses radar to locate threats and the built-in laser to eliminate them.
Paul Shattuck, Lockheed Martin’s director of directed energy systems for Strategic and Missile Defense Systems comments, "Lockheed Martin has applied its expertise as a laser weapon system integrator to provide a practical and affordable defense against serious threats to military forces and installations. In developing the ADAM system, we combined our proven laser beam control architecture with commercial hardware to create a capable, integrated laser weapon system."
An artist's rendering of the 10 kw laser-based ADAM interceptor system
An important limitation of the system is its line-of-sight (LOS) requirement. As the destructive force is delivered via a laser light beam, it can only target projectiles it can "see". This shortcoming may lead traditional interceptors to be used closer to populate regions (where exploding missiles directly overhead could endanger citizens), but supplemented by laser-based interceptor system on the border of a hostile neighbor entity/state.
The capability to intercept UAVs is particularly interesting. While the U.S. has long had a relative hegemony on the emerging combat technology, which it has fielded in combat operations
in Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan
, of late several hostile nation-states have been working to develop UAVs of their own. Most notably Iran, known for voicing strong
, anti-Israeli sentiments, showed off his
"Messenger of Death" drone bomber
it is developing
, aided by
seized U.S. UAV flier
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
11/30/2012 1:09:07 PM
"The Lockheed system is dubbed the "Area Defense Anti-Munitions (ADAM) system" and packs a powerful 10-kilowatt capable of destroying targets up to 2 km (1.24 mi) away."
You missed "laser" between powerful and 10-kilowatt.
"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer
Iron Dome Helps Mitigate 1 in 3 Rocket Strikes on Israel as Gaza Conflict Escalates
November 19, 2012, 4:30 PM
Iran Brags It's Cracking U.S. Spy Drone, Sen. Lieberman Calls Claim "Bluster"
April 23, 2012, 2:25 PM
Iran Mocks U.S. With Toy Version of Downed Spy Drone, Reserves Pink One for Obama
January 17, 2012, 11:27 PM
U.S. to Iran: Give Us Back Our Drone
December 13, 2011, 8:26 AM
Iran Launches "Messenger of Death" Drone Bomber, Turns on Nuclear Reactor
August 23, 2010, 10:00 AM
Star Wars Spinoff Film "Rogue One", Theme Park Attractions Announced
August 17, 2015, 12:20 PM
SpaceX Falcon 9's Seventh Supply Mission to ISS Ends w/ Fiery Stage 1 Explosion
June 28, 2015, 1:10 PM
Cool Science Video: Glowing Millipede Prowls the Nevada Desert
May 18, 2015, 12:00 PM
Newly Discovered Costa Rican Glass Frog is Kermit's Doppelgänger
April 22, 2015, 11:26 AM
Researchers Hope to Find "Exotic" Lifeforms Inside Crater of Dinosaur Killing Meteor
April 14, 2015, 8:47 PM
Mathematician's Sociological Formulation May Explain the "Hipster Paradox"
April 14, 2015, 1:13 PM
Most Popular Articles
Worth the Wait? Microsoft Teases at Windows 10 Flagship Phones to Air Oct. 6
September 15, 2015, 5:13 PM
Apple's First Fixes to iOS 9 Land w/ iOS 9.0.1 Release
September 23, 2015, 6:11 PM
Breaking Bad: How to Crash Google's Chrome Browser With Just 8 Characters
September 23, 2015, 11:08 AM
Apple Watch Commands 2 in 3 Smart Watch Sales, WatchOS 2 Sweetens the Pitch
September 20, 2015, 6:07 PM
Fakebook Pt. I: From "The Chive" to "AskMen"; How Facebook's Phonies are Born and Used
September 15, 2015, 4:00 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information