Laser Weapon Systems

Speed-of-light Protection
Science reality has caught up with science fiction. Lockheed Martin is showing that laser weapon systems can turn up the heat and stop land, air or sea targets in their path. And, they can be compact enough and power efficient enough for tactical platforms on the move, providing nearly unlimited “bullets” with speed-of-light response.
Harnessing the Power of Lasers

Lockheed Martin is moving at light speed to position these capable systems for success on the battlefield. We have developed innovative fiber lasers, sophisticated beam control and auxiliary technologies. Combined with expert platform integration, these advances enable offensive and defensive capabilities against a growing range of threats to military forces and infrastructure.

Our technology today is ready to defend against small rockets, artillery shells and mortars, small unmanned aerial vehicles, small attack boats and lightweight ground vehicles that are approximately a mile way. As fiber laser power levels increase, our systems will be able to disable larger threats and do so across greater distances. When operated in conjunction with kinetic energy systems, these systems can serve as a force multiplier.


Anatomy of a Laser Weapon System

Laser
Magnifying Glass Effect

Heats up a target to the point of break-down or loss of control through a powerful beam of photons


Beam Control
20/20 Vision

Enables accurate aim and targeting through a series of optical lenses, mirrors and software algorithms


Beam Director & Turret
360-Degree Coverage

Positions the laser to permit operation in any direction


Power Supply
Unlimited Bullets

Supplies power and removes excess heat so the laser can be deployed again and again


Integrating Structure
For Land, Air or Sea

Contains the system based on where and how it will be used. Will it be in a container? On a ship? Sit by itself somewhere remote?


System Control
Brains of the Operation

Provides overarching command and control and is responsible for system status as well as the interface within a larger battle management framework


Positioned for success on the battlefield

Lockheed Martin’s proven platform integration expertise includes the auxiliary technologies needed to field laser weapons systems on military aircraft, ground vehicles and ships.

“Our fiber lasers operate with an efficiency that generates less heat and exists in a smaller package allowing easier incorporation into various defense platforms. Our ALADIN laser has operated in the field for two years with no need for realignment, proving both the lethality and the reliability of our solutions.”

Rob Afzal, Senior Fellow, Laser Sensors and Systems

C-130J Laser Gunship

Air-based laser weapon systems offer flexibility and precision for self defense against aircraft and missiles and weapons on the ground. 

Ground-based Laser Weapon System

We have identified a path to mature and further miniaturize our laser weapon system for tactical U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps vehicles.

Sea-based Laser Weapon System

The low size, weight and power of our modular, self-contained laser weapon system simplifies ship integration.


“We’re the only company that has an integrated fiber laser weapon system at the power and precision level that we have achieved with ADAM and ATHENA.”

Lori Reichert, Business Development lead for Directed Energy projects

ALADIN

Our straight-forward, robust, scalable technique combines multiple kilowatt lasers to attain weapon-level power.
ALADIN produces the highest power ever documented by a laser of this type, while retaining excellent beam quality and electrical efficiency. Through a technique called spectral beam combining, multiple fiber laser modules form a single, powerful, high-quality beam that provides greater efficiency and lethality than multiple individual 10-kilowatt lasers. For less power input, we achieve greater power on target.

Beam Control

Our beam control technology uses mirrors, lenses and windows to shape and adjust a laser’s energy.
For laser devices with output as small as 10 kilowatts or as great as 1 megawatt, our beam control optics and software algorithms fine-tune the energy stream into a focused beam. The energy travels through an optical system of mirrors, lenses and windows that concentrate it and adjust it for distortions in the atmosphere it will pass through on the way to the target.

“Our beam control technology enables precision equivalent to shooting a beach ball off the top of the Empire State Building from the San Francisco Bay Bridge.”

Paul Shattuck, Director of Directed Energy systems


Breakthroughs

Lockheed Martin breakthroughs are boosting the performance of laser weapon systems for ground, air and sea platforms while shrinking their size, weight and power consumption. This includes spectral beam combining, adaptive optics, precision pointing, line-of sight stabilization and air-flow control.    

We have showcased many of these technologies in our 10-kilowatt prototype system, which has defeated small airborne and sea-based targets, and our 30-kilowatt test bed system, which has disabled a stationary truck target.

Lockheed Martin breakthroughs are boosting the performance of laser weapon systems for ground, air and sea platforms while shrinking their size, weight and power consumption. This includes spectral beam combining, adaptive optics, precision pointing, line-of sight stabilization and air-flow control.    

We have showcased many of these technologies in our 10-kilowatt prototype system, which has defeated small airborne and sea-based targets, and our 30-kilowatt test bed system, which has disabled a stationary truck target.

Aircraft Laser Turret

Lockheed Martin Turret Expands Laser Performance at Jet Speeds

In nearly 60 flight tests, Lockheed Martin has verified the performance of a turret system developed for DARPA to give 360-degree coverage for high-energy laser weapons operating on military aircraft.

60kW laser

Lockheed Martin Takes Laser to Higher Power

Lockheed Martin begins production of a new generation of modular high power lasers this month. The first laser built using the modular technique will be a 60-kilowatt system for a U.S. Army vehicle. 

Athena laser weapon systems test

Turning Up The Heat: Latest Evolution Of Lockheed Martin Laser Weapon System Stops Truck In Field Test

Lockheed Martin’s 30-kilowatt fiber laser weapon system successfully disabled the engine of a small truck during a recent field test, demonstrating the rapidly evolving precision capability to protect military forces and critical infrastructure.

ADAM laser system

ADAM Ground-Based Laser System Disables Military-Grade Small Boats

In tests off the California coast, the Lockheed Martin 10-kilowatt Area Defense Anti-Munitions (ADAM) system successfully disabled two boats at a range of approximately 1 mile.

The Lockheed Martin ADAM laser system destroys a free-flying rocket target in an April 2013 demonstration.

ADAM Ground-Based Laser System Defeats Free-Flying Rockets

Lockheed Martin has successfully demonstrated the 10-kilowatt Area Defense Anti-Munitions (ADAM) system in multiple tests against free-flying Qassam-like rocket targets at a range of approximately 1.5 kilometers (0.9 miles).

30-kilowatt fiber laser

Lockheed Martin Demonstrates Weapons Grade High Power Fiber Laser

Lockheed Martin has demonstrated a 30-kilowatt electric fiber laser, the highest power ever documented while retaining beam quality and electrical efficiency.


Laser weapon systems in the news