Northrop Grumman Corporation has announced a new variant of the current All Semiconductor Airborne Laser Threat Terminator (ASALTT™) product line that will house a high brightness and high power Quantum Cascade Laser (QCL) module. ASALTT™ is a family of infrared countermeasure systems that protect fixed-wing and rotary military aircraft.
The new QCL module will operate at 10 watts in the mid-wave infrared (MWIR) spectrum, enabling real-time color ratio control and further diversifying the Technology Readiness Level 6 ASALTT™ family of laser systems. This groundbreaking milestone was executed in collaboration with Pranalytica, Inc., a California-based company that tailored the QCL properties and performance for this new design.
“It is through talent, innovation and a strategic relationship that we are able to produce a 10-watt MWIR module, packaged to the size of a smartphone,” said Gordon Stewart, vice president and general manager of Northrop Grumman’s Laser Systems business unit.
“Through collaboration, we have met both double-digit power specifications and the high beam quality sought for next-generation laser systems that satisfy size, weight and power requirements. Previously these specifications could not be met,” said Kumar Patel, president and CEO of Pranalytica.
The ASALTT™ product line technology offers a variety of opto-mechanical and environmentally stable laser systems designed to defeat enemy threats, taking advantage of the most advanced laser technologies currently available from government, industry and academia. Designed with infrared countermeasures in mind, the modular architecture also provides for utilization of key subsystems in adjacent markets, such as covert markers and pointers.
Northrop Grumman Laser Systems is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of military electro-optical (EO) targeting systems. These systems include ground-based (man-portable, handheld and vehicle-mounted) EO imaging/ranging systems for target location, laser designators/markers for precise guidance of smart munitions, airborne laser rangefinders and designators fielded onboard many of the world’s most sophisticated manned and unmanned aircraft.