US/Israel Nautilus Laser system tested out OK

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US/Israel Nautilus Laser system tested out OK

This is a significant development, Now America has a MOBILE system for taking out rockets, being mobile it means it can aslo be used in other ways, how about on a hill side and take out the enemy, or in a plane? So little is revealed that we can only speculate..

... Quote:
In testing to date, the MTHEL testbed has destroyed 28 Katyusha rockets and five artillery shells in flight.

So they have been working on this for a while, it must be close to production stage.

Pics and videos here..

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - A laser beam under joint Israeli-U.S. development destroyed a long-range rocket for the first time in a test in the skies over the American Southwest, Israel's Defense Ministry said on Friday.

Israel has sought an effective defense against ballistic missiles since 1991 when Iraq launched Scuds into the Jewish state during the first Gulf War. It has since developed the Arrow anti-ballistic missile with U.S. funding.

"This is a significant step forward," a ministry spokesman said of the test on May 4 of the "Nautilus" Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser (MTHEL) held at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

Israel sees the Nautilus as another potential countermeasure to possible ballistic attack by enemies, which would include most Arab states and Iran. In turn, they see Israel's undeclared nuclear arsenal as the biggest strategic threat to the region.

The Nautilus laser is being developed mainly by U.S. aerospace giant Northrop Grumman Corp with the help of several Israeli high-tech firms specializing in optics and military hardware.

"The (Nautilus) project has the potential to fill an important operational need for Israel," said Shmuel Keren, the Israeli military's director of weapons systems and infrastructure development.

"The (Nautilus) system can answer our need for a system which can intercept missiles and cruise missiles for which currently there is no effective solution."

The Defense Ministry declined to elaborate on the test or the exact range of the intercepted missile.

In earlier tests the MTHEL laser had successfully eliminated 28 short-range Katyusha rockets and five artillery shells in flight as well as several "hostile objects" on the ground.

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By netchicken: posted on 8-5-2004


In a test conducted yesterday, the Mobile Tactical High-Energy Laser (MTHEL), a joint American-Israeli ballistic missile defense (BMD) project, destroyed a large, high-speed ballistic missile armed with a live-warhead in what is the most complicated and realistic test yet of a laser-based missile defense system.

The MTHEL system grew out of the larger stationary Tactical High-Energy Laser program initiated by the Clinton Administration in 1996 to develop a joint U.S.-Israeli system aimed at providing battlefield missile defense via focused, high-powered laser beams. Designed to use existing laser-generation; fire-control; and command, control, communications and information (C3I) technology to produce an effective low-cost defense against short- and medium-range artillery, rocket and ballistic missile threats, the Pentagon and the Israeli Ministry of Defense have spent nearly $300 million since development began eight years ago. Once fielded, MTHEL is expected to cost approximately $3,000 per use - slightly less than a single Mk84 2,000lb “dumb” bomb.

Although the system is not likely to meet its original target of initial operational capability in the year 2007, MTHEL could be deployed and operational before 2010, assuming that no significant delays or difficulties are encountered in future testing an development.

Although the current testbed is stationary, the first-generation operational system will consist of three large vehicles to house the laser and power generation; fire-control and tracking radar; and command and control systems, the second-generation system is intended to equip a modified Humvee truck.
By netchicken: posted on 8-5-2004

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