Dynetics and Lockheed Martin are part of a team awarded a $10 million contract by the Army to move to the next development phase of a high-power laser weapon system. The program calls for the design of a 100-kW laser weapon system as part of the High Energy Laser Tactical Vehicle Demonstrator (HEL TVD) program. The team recently completed a System Requirements Review and technical baseline update, with the next step in the program being the preliminary design review planned for January 2019.
“The HEL TVD program will be pivotal for the warfighters while they are protecting our country,” said Ronnie Chronister, Dynetics’ vice president of contracts. “Dynetics, Lockheed Martin, and our partners are providing a safe and simple high energy laser weapon system that crews can operate for years to come and across various terrains.
“We pulled together a cross-industry leading team, which has the expertise and knowledge to understand exactly what is needed,” Chronister continued. “We believe that our solution will be straightforward and will be the type of system that will preferred by the Army.”
The HEL weapons system is being developed for integration on the Army’s Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTVs). Lockheed Martin provides the laser subsystem and many other key subsystems for the program. The company brings a strong background well suited to the program, with more than 40 years of creating laser weapons, as well as extensive experience in integrating weapons systems into military ground vehicles.
“The proliferation of hostile unmanned aerial systems and rockets, artillery and mortars present an increasing threat to deployed U.S. troops,” said Iain McKinnie, Lockheed Martin business development lead for Advanced Laser Solutions and Strategy. “Laser weapons offer a deep magazine and very low cost per shot, making them ideally suited to complement existing kinetic energy weapons to address intense UAS swarms and RAM raids.
“The Army’s HEL TVD program is a critical step toward realizing this potential,” McKinnie added, “culminating in 2022 testing of a mobile 100 kW-class laser weapon system fully integrated with an Army FMTV truck.”
The Dynetics team is one of two remaining contractors competing to build an operational demonstrator system for evaluation in 2022. The winner of the program competition will be awarded a contract to build and integrate the laser weapon system onto an Army FMTV platform for field testing at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.