UK nearing deployment of the first 50-kilowatt laser weapon – Technology Org

This will be the first-ever 50-kilowatt laser weapon for the UK Armed Forces capable of eliminating targets at a 2-mile range.

The UK's 50-kilowatt high-powered long range laser.  Photo: UK Ministry of Defense

The UK’s 50-kilowatt high-powered long-range laser. Photo: UK Ministry of Defence

The British Ministry of Defense announced that a new directed-energy weapon system DragonFire successfully completed the initial long-range trial.

During this trial, the laser performed the live-fire attack against a small drone located 3.2 km (2 miles) away. The target was successfully neutralized.

DragonFire uses a solid-state laser that generates a transparent (invisible) energy beam.

The UK Ministry of Defense noted that such tests are needed to improve the country’s understanding of the potential of high-energy laser weapons operating over larger distances.

A representative of the UK Armed Forces said that from the technical perspective the operation of DragonFire is reliable and of the “highest efficiency level”, and the live fire test was required only to verify the performance of the laser itself.

For now, there is no word about the exact date when the British Army will adopt the production version of the DragonFire 50-kilowatt laser weapon.