The US Navy plans to install the first HELIOS combat laser on the destroyer by 2021

A high-energy laser with an integrated HELIOS optical blinding system is designed to destroy small boats and UAVs. The first such laser will be installed on the Pacific Fleet's Arleigh Burke-class destroyer in 2021, according to a spokesman for the US Navy.

HELIOS is a 60 kW laser system developed by Lockheed Martin. For comparison, it is 2 times more powerful than the AN / SEQ-3 or LaWS system, which was installed on the USS Ponce landing ship in 2014. In addition to destroying boats and drones, HELIOS can "blind" the UAV's electro-optical sensors, completely disabling them.

The powerful generation system guarantees HELIOS the ability to fire a huge number of shots. For comparison, the Phalanx shipborne anti-aircraft artillery system is capable of continuous firing for a maximum of 30 seconds, and the stock of RAM anti-aircraft guided missiles on the MK.49 launcher is limited to 21 missiles.

At the moment, HELIOS can hardly be called a revolutionary breakthrough in the field of laser technology, but the first powder guns and pistols once did not differ in high rate of fire and firing range either. Likewise, combat lasers will eventually surpass artillery and missile weapons in efficiency.

Legacy LAWS in action