Laser Work Advances

Boeing has successfully completed a ground test of the advanced tactical laser that featured, for the first time, the entire weapon system integrated aboard its host C-130H aircraft, the company announced Aug. 13. The test took place Aug. 7 at Kirtland AFB, N.M. The ATL’s high-energy chemical laser beam was fired through its beam control system, with the BCS then acquiring the ground target and guiding the beam to the target as directed by the ATL’s battle management element, the company said. The laser passes through a rotating turret on the aircraft’s belly. Boeing said it considers this test a key milestone en route to flight trials later this year against mission-representative ground targets. ATL is being matured under an Office of the Secretary of Defense-sponsored advanced concept technology demonstration.