The UK government today announced that the Department of Defense’s Defense Science and Technology Laboratory (MOD’s Defense Science and Technology Laboratory, Dstl) has conducted the UK’s first long range laser directed energy weapon (LDEW) test at its Porton test site. -Downe.
The tests involved firing a UK DragonFire laser weapon at a range of targets at various ranges. The tests improve the UK’s understanding of how high-energy lasers and related technologies can operate at a distance and hit a variety of targets, officials said.
The UK Government has stated that the ability to deliver high levels of laser power with sufficient accuracy are two key areas that need to be demonstrated to provide confidence in the performance and viability of such laser systems.
As part of the program, a sovereign British “centre of excellence” has been established, staffed by experts from various fields. Laser directed energy weapons have the potential to provide lower cost to target and increase efficiency compared to other weapon systems. The UK government believes this technology could have a huge impact on the future of defense operations.
In July of this year, the British Ministry of Defense announced that, together with a group of European companies, they had begun a series of tests under the DragonFire program. The program creates powerful laser weapons for ships. The first of these low power tests provedthat the system can successfully track air and sea targets with exceptionally high accuracy.