Lockheed Martin has been awarded a contract to develop and deliver up to four 300 kW-class laser weapon systems to the U.S. Army’s Indirect Fire Protection Capability-High Energy Laser (IFPC-HEL) prototype programme. The IFPC-HEL system complements other layered defense components to protect soldiers from stressing threats, unmanned aerial systems, rocket, artillery and mortars, along with rotary and fixed-wing aircraft.
Lockheed Martin will deliver two 300 kW-class IFPC-HEL prototypes with an option for two additional 300 kW-class units.
Since 2019, Lockheed Martin has been part of the transition from the 100 kW-class science and technology program, the High Energy Laser Tactical Vehicle Demonstrator (HEL-TVD), to deliver a 300 kW-class IFPC-HEL demonstrator. In 2020, Lockheed Martin was awarded a contract to develop a compact, ruggedized 300 kW-class laser for the Department of Defense. In August of 2022, Lockheed Martin delivered the High Energy Laser Scaling Initiative (HELSI) laser for use in the IFPC-HEL demonstrator, which was the most powerful solid-state directed energy technology delivered at that time.
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(Image: U.S. Army’s Indirect Fire Protection Capability-High Energy Laser (IFPC-HEL) Demonstrator laser weapon system. Image courtesy Lockheed Martin)