Thursday, June 2, 2016

Royal Navy looking at fitting laser onto Phalanx

(UK) The UK is looking at evaluating a Laser Directed Energy Weapon (LDEW) as part of a programme which would see the Royal Navy bolting on a defensive laser weapon system" onto the Phalanx CIWS in which to combat the proliferation of threats against Naval vessels, be they, anti-ship missiles, swarm tactics or even airborne threats such as aircraft, helicopters or drones.

The Phalanx, in service with the US and numerous navies across the world (including the Royal Navy) is a six-barreled 20mm M61 Vulcan Gatling Gun, capable of firing 4,500 rounds a minute which throws a wall of lead (OK, Tungsten) towards any threat, literally shredding the target to pieces due to the sheer weight of rounds sent in the direction of the target (hence the name Phalanx).

In Iraq, some smart arse came up with the idea to mount one on a pallet, name it C-RAM and use it to take out incoming fire.

Anyway, with everybody and his dog building, selling and buying much more effective anti-ship missiles (the Indians have one which can fly at three times the speed of sound, which they are currently selling to Vietnam), the Royal Navy, like the US Navy, has decided that now would be a good time to look into using lasers in which to help protect vessels from these ultra fast threats with a timeline of the end of the decade for the trial of the first prototypes.