PDA

View Full Version : Nat'l Security U.S. successfully tests airborne laser on missile


Donger
02-12-2010, 03:32 PM
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1111660620100212?type=marketsNews

WASHINGTON, Feb 12 (Reuters) - A U.S. high-powered airborne laser weapon shot down a ballistic missile in the first successful test of a futuristic directed energy weapon, the U.S. Missile Defense Agency said on Friday.

The agency said in a statement the test took place at 8:44 p.m. PST (11:44 p.m. EST) on Thursday /0444 GMT on Friday) at Point Mugu's Naval Air Warfare Center-Weapons Division Sea Range off Ventura in central California.

"The Missile Defense Agency demonstrated the potential use of directed energy to defend against ballistic missiles when the Airborne Laser Testbed (ALTB) successfully destroyed a boosting ballistic missile" the agency said.

The high-powered Airborne Laser system is being developed by Boeing Co., (BA.N) the prime contractor, and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency.

Boeing produces the airframe, a modified 747 jumbo jet, while Northrop Grumman (NOC.N) supplies the higher-energy laser and Lockheed Martin (LMT.N) is developing the beam and fire control systems.

"This was the first directed energy lethal intercept demonstration against a liquid-fuel boosting ballistic missile target from an airborne platform," the agency added.

The airborne laser weapon successfully underwent its first in-flight test against a target missile back in August. During that test, Boeing said the modified 747-400F aircraft took off from Edwards Air Force Base and used its infrared sensors to find a target missile launched from San Nicolas Island, California.

The plane's battle management system issued engagement and target location instructions to the laser's fire control system, which tracked the target and fired a test laser at the missile. Instruments on the missile verified the system had hit its mark, Boeing said.

The airborne laser weapon is aimed at deterring enemy missile attacks and providing the U.S. military with the ability to engage all classes of ballistic missiles at the speed of light while they are in the boost phase of flight.

"The revolutionary use of directed energy is very attractive for missile defense, with the potential to attack multiple targets at the speed of light, at a range of hundreds of kilometers (miles), and at a low cost per intercept attempt compared to current technologies," the U.S. Missile Defense Agency said.

Norman Einstein
02-12-2010, 03:43 PM
Do you think this is real or maybe something to give "them" something to think about?

Hydrae
02-12-2010, 03:46 PM
So what happens to this directed energy if it misses it's target? Is it like a super bullet that travels in a straight line until it runs into something to burn? At least a bullet will eventually drop to the ground thanks to gravity.

Donger
02-12-2010, 03:47 PM
So what happens to this directed energy if it misses it's target? Is it like a super bullet that travels in a straight line until it runs into something to burn? At least a bullet will eventually drop to the ground thanks to gravity.

Do you like popcorn?

ChiefaRoo
02-12-2010, 04:07 PM
So what happens to this directed energy if it misses it's target? Is it like a super bullet that travels in a straight line until it runs into something to burn? At least a bullet will eventually drop to the ground thanks to gravity.

I would think that after a certain distance the laser light will fragment and dissipate in the atmosphere. I would think the energy would bleed off even if the atmosphere wasn't involved.

Hydrae
02-12-2010, 04:15 PM
I would think that after a certain distance the laser light will fragment and dissipate in the atmosphere. I would think the energy would bleed off even if the atmosphere wasn't involved.

My limited understanding of lasers would say....no. That is the point of a laser, it remains in a tight beam.

ChiefaRoo
02-12-2010, 04:18 PM
My limited understanding of lasers would say....no. That is the point of a laser, it remains in a tight beam.

I know clouds and particles can interfere with a chemical laser. I'm not sure about the effective range of a laser in the vacuum of space.

petegz28
02-12-2010, 04:20 PM
So what happens to this directed energy if it misses it's target? Is it like a super bullet that travels in a straight line until it runs into something to burn? At least a bullet will eventually drop to the ground thanks to gravity.

It locks onto the missle from a plane while the missle is in flight. So unless there is a country in the sky we don't see or know about, I think we will be safe with a miss.

wild1
02-12-2010, 04:20 PM
Now we only need to train the sharks to swim where we want them to...

wild1
02-12-2010, 04:21 PM
So what happens to this directed energy if it misses it's target?

Global warming.

ChiefaRoo
02-12-2010, 04:24 PM
<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/6w-ql8msl0U&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/6w-ql8msl0U&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

Hydrae
02-12-2010, 04:25 PM
It locks onto the missle from a plane while the missle is in flight. So unless there is a country in the sky we don't see or know about, I think we will be safe with a miss.

Until it misses and takes out a passenger plane 500 miles away.

The article mentions that we would be using it to take them out during the boost phase which to me would mean before they are very far off the ground (up to a mile or two) and I would have to assume the plane would likely be higher so it would be shooting downward.

This may be no concern at all, I am just asking the questions that pop into my head when I read something like this. I would hope these things have been taken into consideration of course but I would still be interested in learning the answers.

Donger
02-12-2010, 04:26 PM
I would think that after a certain distance the laser light will fragment and dissipate in the atmosphere.

Correct.

I would think the energy would bleed off even if the atmosphere wasn't involved.

Not quite correct.

petegz28
02-12-2010, 04:29 PM
Until it misses and takes out a passenger plane 500 miles away.

The article mentions that we would be using it to take them out during the boost phase which to me would mean before they are very far off the ground (up to a mile or two) and I would have to assume the plane would likely be higher so it would be shooting downward.

This may be no concern at all, I am just asking the questions that pop into my head when I read something like this. I would hope these things have been taken into consideration of course but I would still be interested in learning the answers.

It isn't an instant explosion. It has to stay locked onto the missle for sometime before it actually burns through the outer-casing and diables the missle. If they stay locked onto something and it isn't the missle then someone fucked up.

ChiefaRoo
02-12-2010, 04:30 PM
Correct.



Not quite correct.

I wonder what it's effective range would be in space. Thousands, Tens of Thousands of miles???

Donger
02-12-2010, 04:30 PM
Until it misses and takes out a passenger plane 500 miles away.

The article mentions that we would be using it to take them out during the boost phase which to me would mean before they are very far off the ground (up to a mile or two) and I would have to assume the plane would likely be higher so it would be shooting downward.

This may be no concern at all, I am just asking the questions that pop into my head when I read something like this. I would hope these things have been taken into consideration of course but I would still be interested in learning the answers.

The effective range of the ABL is ~400km. But, no, you really wouldn't want to be in front of it during firing.

Rooster
02-12-2010, 04:32 PM
Sounds familar. :evil:

ChiefaRoo
02-12-2010, 04:34 PM
Sounds familar. :evil:


<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/2Duj2oZIC8U&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/2Duj2oZIC8U&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

Donger
02-12-2010, 04:52 PM
I wonder what it's effective range would be in space. Thousands, Tens of Thousands of miles???

Effective as in dangerous? I have no idea, but vastly farther than in the atmosphere.