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US army awards contract to develop truck-mounted laser weapon

File image of the THEL prototype that has featured in the development of this tactical laser program.
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Aug 17, 2007
Northrop Grumman was awarded a contract Friday to develop a mobile truck-mounted laser capable of destroying rockets, artillery shells and mortars, the US Army said.

Northrop Grumman will be in competition with Boeing which was awarded a seven million dollar contract to develop a similar higher energy laser that can be mounted on a heavy truck.

The eight million dollar Northrop Grumman contract calls for it to "develop and complete a preliminary design of a rugged beam control system" on a truck.

The contract is part of an army program to demonstrate the feasibility of a tactical mobile high energy laser weapon that can counter rockets, artillery shells and mortars, known as RAM projectiles.

The army program "is maturing the technologies for the integration of a high energy laser into a wheeled tactical platform," Bill Gnacek, the program's manager said in a statement.

"Our main goal is to transition this HEL TD (High Energy Laser Tactical Demonstrator) technology into a formal acquisition program and eventually place in the hands of army commanders an effective lethal capability to counter RAM projectiles," he said.

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Boeing Awarded Contract To Develop Ruggedized Beam Control System For Mobile Laser Weapon System
St. Louis MO (SPX) Jul 25, 2007
Boeing has been awarded a U.S. Army contract valued at approximately $7 million to begin developing the initial phase for a truck-mounted laser weapon system that destroys rockets, artillery shells and mortar rounds. Under the High Energy Laser Technology Demonstrator (HEL TD) Phase I contract, awarded Friday, Boeing will develop and complete a preliminary design of a rugged beam control system (BCS) on a Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck.

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