Upgraded Lockheed Martin Laser Outguns Threat in Half the Time

Lockheed Martin's Advanced Test High Energy Asset system, or ATHENA, is based on their 30-kilowatt class Accelerated Laser Demonstration Initiative (ALADIN) high-power laser.

Lockheed Martin's Advanced Test High Energy Asset system, or ATHENA, s based on their 30-kilowatt class Accelerated Laser Demonstration Initiative (ALADIN) high-power laser.

October 23, 2017 | Source: Lockheed Martin, lockheedmartin.com, 20 September 2017

A Lockheed Martin prototype laser weapon system proved that an advanced system of sensors, software and specialized optics can deliver decisive lethality against unmanned aerial vehicle threats.

In tests conducted with the U.S. Army's Space and Missile Defense Command in August, the 30-kilowatt class ATHENA (Advanced Test High Energy Asset) system brought down five 10.8' wingspan Outlaw unmanned aerial systems at the Army's White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. ATHENA employed advanced beam control technology and an efficient fiber laser in this latest series of tests of the prototype system.

"The tests at White Sands against aerial targets validated our lethality models and replicated the results we've seen against static targets at our own test range," said Keoki Jackson, Lockheed Martin's Chief Technology Officer. "As we mature the technology behind laser weapon systems, we're making the entire system more effective and moving closer to a laser weapon that will provide greater protection to our warfighters by taking on more sophisticated threats from a longer range."

Lockheed Martin partnered with Army Space and Missile Defense Command on a cooperative research and development agreement to test ATHENA.