Around for several decades, the technology of combined-fiber, high energy lasers are advancing to the battlefield from laboratory or exercise demonstration. The advent of the production of the technology, advanced battery capabilities and higher laser power—along with a mounting unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) threat—are all combining into more demand and use by the U.S. military. The transition of laser weapon systems to the battlefield brings with it concept of operations and tactics, techniques and procedures that will improve warfighting, said Michael Jirjis, lead, Directed Energy Weapons Experimentation, U.S.
DOD issued to The Boeing Co. of Huntsville, Alabama, a $15,800,000 contract modification, increasing the value of the effort from $62,361,210 to $78,161,210. Under the modification, the contractor will demonstrate a successful transition of fiber combined laser technology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology–Lincoln Laboratory. The work will be performed in Huntington Beach, California. The period of performance is extended from March 31, 2020, until March 31, 2021. Fiscal 2020 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $3,000,000 are being obligated at the time of award. The Missile Defense Agency, Albuquerque, New Mexico, is the contracting activity.
Leidos, Inc., Reston, Virginia, has been awarded a $15,246,130 ceiling cost-reimbursement contract for high energy combinable fiber laser advanced research effort. This contract seeks to advance the development and demonstration of high-energy laser sources for developing and delivering novel solutions for the next-generation airborne laser weapons. This contract award is the result of a competitive acquisition for which two offers were received. Work will be performed at Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico, and is expected to be completed by August 22, 2023. Fiscal year 2018 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $1,078,715 will be obligated at the time of award.
Each of the U.S. military services and the Special Operations Command plan to field laser weapons in the coming years. But Lockheed Martin officials say they could deliver now a 30-kilowatt weapon system—powerful enough to bore a hole in a steel plate within seconds—if the military asks.
Lockheed Martin Aculight, Bothell, Wash., is being awarded an $11,796,483 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N68936-12-C-0212) to exercise an option under this Phase III Small Business Innovation Research contract to fabricate, test, and deliver a spectral beam combined fiber laser subsystem. The Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division, China Lake, Calif., is the contracting activity.