Tests of high power lasers

Tests of high power lasers

5 81-mm mortar shells have been shot fired in our direction from the ridge, crossing the bottom of our narrow and sandwiched plains, but four of them exploded in the air. «Attack» continued against us, now also from the bottom of plain jet flew three drone, but they also disappeared in a cloud of smoke, one by one — then their remains cool dived to the ground.
 
With all this we have not heard a single anti-aircraft gun, not have seen any of the 1st track missiles — as if all these dangers were attacking «erased» from the sky, reports Armada.
 
Although the «erase» (Meaning destroy) may sound out of place in relation to the description of the fighting, but thanks to a sci-fi comic books for a few 10’s of years it has become just as popular as the interjection «bang» to transmit sound gun shot. And then there are fiction and reality.
 
Above is the actual description of the scene, which could see the on-fire range Oksenboden company Rheinmetall Air Defence in the deepest folds of Alpine mountains of central Switzerland. Switzerland, of course, friendly country, and while the above scene might be a real battle scene, it was just an impressive demonstration, staged Rheinmetall purposes of illustration the level achieved by the development of laser guns.
 
If precisely, high power lasers also recognized by the acronym Hel (High Energy Laser). Rheinmetall company for quite a long time studying the use of lasers, especially for air defense missions, underwent examination and tested a huge number of alternatives, including a seed laser, feeding stage amplifiers (or Mopa — master oscillator power amplifier — power amplifier oscillator), the concept of modular resonators (which advantage — their commercial availability and defect — encompassing dielectric reflection, prevents obtaining spectrally combined systems, etc.).
 
In short, the company Rheinmetall concluded that, taking into account the current situation in the development of practical lasers in the world, the best solution would be a way to «overlay rays.» In other words, the introduction of multiple beams with controlled output power and clear their focus at one point — the right amount is depending on the distance and / or the nature of the object to be hit.
 
To this end, the company Rheinmetall eventually turned to glass fiber lasers ytterbium from the German firm IPG Photonics is the purpose of the creation of its own weapons systems based on «unit beamforming.»

 
Tests of high power lasers

Beam forming apparatus at a theoretical level (left) and the actual (right). The picture shows a 10 kW unit, ready for connection to a laser source and installed in a rotary cylinder
 
As already mentioned, the development of the company Rheinmetall focusing laser beams at one point offers a good operational flexibility, and greater savings. You can not just make a double or triple 10-kilowatt unit we litsezreem pictured in this article, but you can, for example, to connect these blocks into a single device and get at least 50 kW need sizzling energy. It is understood that the complex interception rockets, artillery shells and mines distant acts that can be controlled at least to artillery shells, need 100 kW.
 
The only drawback at this time is not a good ratio of power input and output provided by modern lasers. For this reason, they will not be in the not to distant future, be used as an attacking weapon on mid drones long duration flight (laser target designation is quite another matter, as well as laser systems aimed to counter IR guidance systems — DIRCM). Due to the installation of their own units in the tower beamforming Mantis company Rheinmetall almost made tiered base defense as classic Mantis tower with revolving guns firing ammunition Ahead, may be used in the same defensive schemes as before, for example, around the Forward Operating base.
 
The above demo tests in reality did not include real shooting mortar rounds and faster that with a jeweler’s precision could play physical and ballistic properties of this type of weapon in the form. It had iron balls with a diameter of 82 mm to shoot out of the tube with compressed air and filled with explosives in order that it was possible to see the great distance from entering into them. For the same reason the bow jet drones (but in reality Chinese controlled Models gunship Hawk) was set small explosive charge.

 
Real hardware
 
On the basis of practicality and using the existing equipment, the company Rheinmetall practically «poured new wine into old bottles» by adding your own new triple laser with output power of 10 kW tower Mantis instead turret guns and synchronize it with its own radar Skyshield.
 
As a result, the system has detected and tracked down balls (substitutes mortar shells) as they appeared and began to fall over the ridge and destroyed their triple laser beam at approximately one shot every two seconds (the aforementioned blunder explained by the fact that the rules forbid the use of lasers on a background of pure heaven; such makarom «fire» should occur later in step reduction targets on a background of mountains, which reduces the time required to engage to an absolute minimum).
 
Another demonstration of the air attack, and perhaps most significant, if not spectacular, was the attack on vosmivintovomu electric UAV with the common goal to burn his set of guidance and control. As for accuracy, it was not such a difficult task for infrared sensing device Skyguard, given the fact that he had previously caught a «mortar rounds» diameter of 82 mm at a distance of about 750 meters.
 
Blinded drone was absolutely incapacitated and become useless. This also applies to at least some system, which relies only on optoelectronics or even radar. Whatever had no armor tank, aim the beam at the sights and burn out their tank and then the tank will turn into easy prey. This episode really reminded last a day or a demonstration of this, in what were used laser actuators with different output power.
 

 

Tests of high power lasers

Laser system 20 kW installed on the roof of the truck Tatra 8×8, as ytterbium laser generator is sufficiently massive device
 
Rheinmetall company showed laser systems with different output power. Let’s go in order of increasing this capacity. Compact kilowatt laser mounted on an APC M113, enough to cope with unexploded ordnance. Further, systems with an output of 5/10 kW installed on Boxer, more than is enough to ignite the fuel tanks of the enemy machine or cans with flammable liquid with a solid distance. Again, neither the 1st sound.
 
It also means that the laser de facto makes every shot detection system completely worthless. Installing a dual laser power of 10 kW installed on the truck Tatra 8×8, killed post with radar. And what is important, before proceeding to demonstrate anti-aircraft capabilities, which ended 3 Downed drone described first article, the machine also disabled the machine gun on the move around mnogokaliberny pickup «Toyota Gang». In machine-gun tape immediately before ramming into the chamber was very skillfully burned one cartridge.

 Animated movie of a laser system company Rheinmetall

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