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Boeing to Develop High-Brightness Laser

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., May 25, 2011 — Boeing Co. has received a $4.2 million, 16-month contract to design and develop a 25-kW high-brightness laser for the Pentagon's High Energy Laser – Joint Technology Office (HEL-JTO). Boeing will develop the solid-state, electric laser based on the thin-disk (TDL) laser technology.

The goal is to demonstrate that the performance of a TDL-based system is consistent with the HEL-JTO Robust Electric Laser Initiative program's objectives of high brightness and high electrical efficiency.

Boeing's approach incorporates a series of commercial, off-the-shelf lasers used in many industries for cutting and welding metal parts. These devices have demonstrated high reliability and the associated support and maintenance benefits. Successful completion of this project could lead to the development and production of operational versions of the laser system.

"The thin-disk laser project provides a great opportunity for Boeing and the Pentagon to advance the efficiency and performance of solid-state laser technology," said Mike Rinn, vice president of Boeing Directed Energy Systems. "As we work the details of this project, we are building on Boeing's industry leadership in the integration of high-power laser devices."

A high-power, solid-state directed energy weapon has the ability to damage, disable or destroy targets at the speed of light, with little to no collateral damage. The laser also can flexibly support missions on the battlefield as well as in urban operations.

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May 2011
AmericasBoeing DefenseBusinessdefenseHEL-JTOhigh-brightness laserindustrialindustrial lasersMike RinnNew MexicoRobust Electric Laser Initiativesolid-state electric laserthin-disk laser technologyweldinglasers

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