LCS to get Laser Zapper

Artist’s rendering of Lockheed Martin’s HELIOS system. The company picked up a $150 million contract to develop it for the Navy in 2018 to include a high-energy laser system for use against drones and small boats, a long-range ISR capability, and a counter-UAS dazzler capability. The version company’s LLD for use on the LCS is undoubtedly smaller but likely with the same attributes. Credit: Lockheed Martin

From DoD:

Lockheed Martin Corp., Baltimore, Maryland, is awarded a $22,436,852 letter contract for the integration, demonstration, testing and operation of the Layered Laser Defense (LLD) weapon system prototype onboard a Navy littoral combat ship while that vessel is underway. Work will be performed in Moorestown, New Jersey (30%); Baltimore, Maryland (25%); Sunnyvale, California (12%); Woodinville, Washington (10%); Manassas, Virginia (5%); Dallas, Texas (15%); San Diego, California (2%); and Santa Cruz, California (1%). Key areas of work to be performed include development of a prototype structure and enclosure to protect the LLD from ships motion and maritime environment in a mission module format; system integration and test with government-furnished equipment; platform integration and system operational verification and test; systems engineering; test planning; data collection and analysis support; and operational demonstration. Work is expected to be complete by July 2021.

The total cumulative value of this contract is $22,436,852. The base period is $22,436,852 and no options are proposed. The action will be incrementally funded with an initial obligation of $11,218,426 utilizing fiscal 2019 research, development, and test and evaluation (Defense-wide) funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured under N00014-20-S-B001, “Long Range Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) for Navy and Marine Corps Science & Technology.” Since proposals are received throughout the year under the long-range BAA, the number of proposals received in response to the solicitation is unknown. The Office of Naval Research, Arlington, Virginia, is the contracting activity (N00014-20-C-1003).

A more LCS-like laser system from Lockheed-Martin is their Advanced Test High Energy Asset (ATHENA) device recently tested by the Air Force to splash drones at Fort Sill.

The radar track was provided to airmen who operated ATHENA via cues from the C2, then ATHENA’s beam director slewed, acquired, tracked and defeated the drone with a high-energy laser.

The ATHENA system shown here destroyed multiple drones in a real-world demonstration for the Air Force. Could it be coming to an LCS near you?

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