The US Navy and Lockheed Martin have conducted Critical Design Review (CDR) for HELIOS laser weapon system built for Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, tests of which are scheduled to take place later this year.
This takes the program an inch closer towards its integration with the destroyers, expected to take place in 2021.
The High Energy Laser with Integrated Optical-dazzler and Surveillance (HELIOS) system will undergo system integration in Moorestown, New Jersey in 2020. It will then be tested at the Wallops Island Navy land-based test site before being delivered to a shipyard for integration into an Arleigh Burke destroyer next year. In addition to being built into the ship’s structure, HELIOS will become an integrated component of the ship’s Aegis combat system, Lockheed said in a statement Wednesday.
Under the HELIOS program, the US Navy is seeking a 60-kW-class high-energy laser combined with counterintelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance dazzling capability. The system will provide increased self-defense and area defense, offer deep magazine capacity and significantly decrease the cost per engagement for low to midrange land, asymmetric surface and air threats.