The Joint High Power Solid State Laser (JHPSSL) developed by Northrop Grumman is being integrated with the beam control and command and control systems of the Tactical High Energy Laser (THEL) at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR), N.M., to provide the Army with the world's first high-power, Solid State Laser Testbed Experiment (SSLTE).The company has a lead role in integrating and operating SSLTE.
The SSLTE will be used to evaluate the capability of a 100kW-class solid-state laser to accomplish a variety of missions. Those results will be the basis for directing future development of solid-state lasers as a weapon system.
Solid-state lasers have achieved militarily useful power levels and packaging densities. Northrop Grumman has been demonstrating laser performance at White Sands Missile Range and other test sites for many years, unequivocally proving their lethality against a wide variety of potential threats. These include missiles of various sizes and speeds, helicopters, drones, rockets, artillery, mortar rounds and submunitions.
Both the relocation of the JHPSSL Phase 3 device and the THEL facility refurbishment are being carried out under an Army contract with BAE Systems, which has overall responsibility for the SSLTE systems engineering and test planning. BAE Systems is also developing a modular and transportable enclosure to house the JHPSSL device and its control room at the site.