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Old 25 December 2017, 23:07
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Lockheed solid state laser article

https://www.wired.com/story/lockheed...r-jets-lasers/

Wired is owned by Conde Nast, but enjoyed the article.
I have not followed laser development lately, but the solid state lasers and their requirements for batteries will be just another reason batteries will continue to advance.

Very cool as a countermeasure for sure.
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Old 25 December 2017, 23:59
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That's stupid cool. It'll be interesting to see what kind of technological advances are made over the next 10-20 years.

I'm not very knowledgeable when it comes to this kind of tech. The whole thing of knowing your target and what is behind it comes to mind with this. What kind of risk is there to other things in the air, as well as in space, should the laser miss its target?
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Old 26 December 2017, 09:47
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Meh. I wouldn't get too excited.

First, directed energy weapons rely on dwell time on the aim point. Meaning they have to continuously fire on the same place long enough to transfer energy (heat mostly) into the target, in order to obtain some result. I could get a good kill with a 40 watt laser IF I could hold on the aim point for a few minutes. IF I had a one megawatt laser, my dwell time drops to milliseconds. The independent variable here is the power of the laser, and the dependent variable is the dwell time on the aim point; and one could add a third, independent, variable as well: target material composition.

Second, directed energy weapons are (for now) line-of-sight along the line-of-flight axis. So the pilot will have to point the aircraft at the target to engage. Sure, you could steer the beam, but there will be some sort of offsetting 'penalty' in terms of speed, maneuverability, weight, power, etc. Right now, fourth and fifth generation fighters can do "over-the-shoulder" shots (off boresight) against any target the pilot can see through their helmet-mounted sights; and the missiles can lock on after the launch. That's a better capability, in my opinion, than an air-to-air laser. For now.

Is it a capability worth pursuing? Absolutely. However, I'd put the evolutionary level slightly below the first pursuit aircraft machine guns of the First World War.
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Old 26 December 2017, 09:58
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^^^^ Debbie Downer

No Star Trek for us yet.....
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Old 26 December 2017, 10:55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tracy View Post
IF I had a one megawatt laser, my dwell time drops to milliseconds.
The power requirement is the big Debbie Downer for airborne lasers. Those kilowatts or megawatt of power have to come from somewhere. Since the HTRE-3 disaster in Idaho in the 1960s, the USA gave up on nuclear powered aircraft as being not worth the crash risk, so the aircraft itself won't be generating the power. About the best option I could imagine would be a capacitor pod charged up on the ground and hung onto the plane, but even if a capacitor could hold that much juice, it would only provide a single momentary shot. That seems like a waste of an airframe that could instead carry much more effective ordnance on the same pylons.

However, ground or ship mounted lasers are a different story.
Back in the late 1980s, a British Nimrod aircraft got lased by a Soviet Udaloy class destroyer. The pilots suffered eye damage and the plane's electronics were messed up, though reports were unclear as to how bad the damage to pilots and plane were. I don't know what version of directed energy weapon was used nor how many watts were employed, but I mention it here only due to it being a publicly known event three decades ago. Imagine what could have been developed behind closed doors since then.
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Old 26 December 2017, 13:32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ET1/ss nuke View Post
Back in the late 1980s, a British Nimrod aircraft got lased by a Soviet Udaloy class destroyer. The pilots suffered eye damage and the plane's electronics were messed up, though reports were unclear as to how bad the damage to pilots and plane were. I don't know what version of directed energy weapon was used nor how many watts were employed, but I mention it here only due to it being a publicly known event three decades ago. Imagine what could have been developed behind closed doors since then.
The Soviets did at least once more in 1997...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strait...laser_incident
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Old 26 December 2017, 14:23
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Thanks for weighing in, Tracy/Nuke. As usual SOCnet is a quick educator.
I suppose I'll keep on waiting for my phased plasma rifle in the 40 watt range.

Looks like they are currently playing with 30kW. This document showcases some of their successful tests.

https://www.lockheedmartin.com/conte...on-Systems.pdf

There's a picture of a C130 in there. Wonder what they use for power onboard that thing.
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Old 26 December 2017, 15:03
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
That's stupid cool. It'll be interesting to see what kind of technological advances are made over the next 10-20 years.

I'm not very knowledgeable when it comes to this kind of tech. The whole thing of knowing your target and what is behind it comes to mind with this. What kind of risk is there to other things in the air, as well as in space, should the laser miss its target?
what kind of technological advances are made over the next 10-20 years. hell I will be to dam old to care, unless it can make me younger
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Old 26 December 2017, 16:10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tracy View Post
Meh. I wouldn't get too excited.

First, directed energy weapons rely on dwell time on the aim point. Meaning they have to continuously fire on the same place long enough to transfer energy (heat mostly) into the target, in order to obtain some result. I could get a good kill with a 40 watt laser...
When Skynet takes over, Phased Plasma Rifles in the 40 watt range will glut the market.

The General Dynamics RBS-80 Phased Plasma Pulse Gun, which will have a 160 watt range, will be a little less common and restricted to the T-800 Terminators that will be programmed to kill us all.

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