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Ionatron and Air Force Research Laboratory Collaborate

Photonics Spectra
Mar 2004
Ionatron Inc. of Tucson, Ariz., and the Directed Energy Directorate of the US Air Force Research Laboratory at Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., have signed an agreement to jointly research ultrashort, ultrahigh-intensity lasers to produce ionized optical, plasma particles in the atmosphere. The lasers' pulse widths are less than a picosecond, and their pulsed peak power output is equivalent to the global power grid capacity. The particles would act as a short circuit and would route energy in a particular direction. The Air Force expects to establish the potential for developing laser-induced plasma channel technology to produce highly directional radio-frequency energy.


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