Lockheed Martin has announced the delivery of a 60-kilowatt-class high-energy laser with an integrated optical-dazzler and surveillance (HELIOS) system to the US Navy.
The HELIOS system will be integrated into existing warships to provide a directed energy capability.
The multi-mission system is expected to provide “tactically relevant” laser weapon system warfighting capability as “a key element of a layered defense architecture.”
According to Lockheed Martin official Rick Cordaro, HELIOS enhances the combat effectiveness of US Navy warships to help deter future threats.
It also provides additional protection for commanders and personnel during dangerous naval missions, he said.
“Lockheed Martin and the US Navy share a common vision and enthusiasm for developing and providing disruptive laser weapon systems,” Cordaro explained, adding that the HELIOS system “represents a solid foundation for incremental delivery of robust and powerful laser weapon system capabilities.”
Lockheed Martin said that its “game-changing” HELIOS system not only provides directed energy capability but also supports long-range intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions.
Its low cost-per-kill precision response enables US Navy fleets to address emerging threats.
The system’s mature, scalable architecture also supports increased laser power to neutralize future threats.
In 2021, the US Navy said it would test the HELIOS system for permanent vessel deployment to counter drones and fast attack boats.
“HELIOS leverages technology building blocks from significant, long term internal research and development projects that continue to advance the Navy’s goal for fielding laser weapon systems aboard surface ships and putting the Navy on the right side of the cost curve for threat engagements,” Lockheed stated.