Media Resources

News Releases

Bookmark and Share

Northrop Grumman Scores Biggest Successes Yet for Solid-State Laser Weapon Production by Industry

REDONDO BEACH, Calif., Sept. 2, 2008 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has set new industry records in all aspects of high-power solid-state laser production, demonstrating the readiness of these compact, portable, speed-of-light weapons to take their place on the battlefield.

The company demonstrated the third critical milestone for the U.S. military's Joint High Power Solid State Laser (JHPSSL) program, Phase 3. Operating from Northrop Grumman's one-of-a-kind laser factory, the system:


  -- Raised its demonstrated lethality by precisely combining two
     laser chains to produce  record power -- 30 kW -- in an excellent
     beam-beam quality of 2.1 times the theoretical limit
  -- Operated at this performance level for more than five minutes
     continuously and more than 40 minutes total; and
  -- Achieved electrical-to-optical efficiency of greater than 19
     percent.

"Our march towards providing compact, electrically powered, operationally scalable and affordable laser weapons for U.S. military services continues to produce world-leading results," said Dan Wildt, vice president of Directed Energy Systems for Northrop Grumman's Space Technology sector.

"We believe this sets a new solid-state laser record by simultaneously demonstrating tactically significant power and beam quality for more than five minutes," stated JHPSSL Phase 3 Program Manager Jay Marmo. Just as it had in two previous milestone tests, the company's JHPSSL Phase 3 laser demonstrated its third milestone ahead of schedule.

"We've achieved all of our major milestones ahead of schedule as we continue to rev up the power and capability. By demonstrating our ability to combine two identical, modular laser chains into a single, high-brightness beam, we have proven all aspects of our scalable design for 100kW."

The JHPSSL program is funded by the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command, Huntsville, Ala; Office of the Secretary of Defense - Joint Technology Office, Albuquerque, N.M.; Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M.; and the Office of Naval Research, Arlington, Va.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a global defense and technology company whose 120,000 employees provide innovative systems, products and solutions in information and services, electronics, aerospace and shipbuilding to government and commercial customers worldwide.

CONTACT:  Bob Bishop
          Northrop Grumman Space Technology
          310.812.5227
          Cell: 310.251.0261
          bob.j.bishop@ngc.com