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Proceedings Paper

Overview of the Laser activities at Rheinmetall Waffe Munition
Author(s): Klaus Ludewigt; Thomas Riesbeck; B. Schünemann; A. Graf; Markus Jung; Th. Schreiber; Ramona Eberhardt; A. Tünnermann
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Paper Abstract

The paper will give an overview over the laser weapon activities at RWM (Rheinmetall Waffe Munition) over the last years. Starting from the actual scenarios for laser weapon applications as: CRAM (Counter Rocket Artillery Mortar), Air Defence and UXO (unexploded ordnance) clearing. The basic requirements of a future laser weapon as beam diameter, beam quality, tracking capability, adaptive optics were deduced.

For the UXO scenario a mobile directed energy laser demonstrator for humanitarian mine and UXO clearing based on fiber lasers is presented. Based on the parameters the system concept including the cooling system, power supply and the integration into the armoured vehicle TM 170 are explained. The contribution show first experiments of UXO and IED clearing.

Different technical approaches to achieve laser power in the 100 kW regime combined with very good beam quality are discussed to fulfil the requirements of the CRAM and Air Defence scenario. Spectral coupling and the beam superimposing both are performed by Rheinmetall Waffe Munition.

At the spectral coupling the basic technology parameters for the fiber laser and the dielectric grating as the latest results were put into context with the power levels reached at other groups.

For the beam super imposing technology the basic experiments regarding the tracking capability and compensation of the atmosphere on the test range at Unterlüß will be explained.

A generic 10 kW Laser Weapon Demonstrator based on 2 Laser Weapon Modules (LWM) from RWM each 5 kW fiber Laser with beam forming and tracking integrate by the team of RWM and RAD (Rheinmetall Air Defense) into a Ground based Air Defend system consisting of Skyguard and Millenium turret are presented.

The flight path of the UAV within the valley of the life firing range at Ochsenboden Switzerland is shown. Selected results of the successful tests against UAV’s are presented. It shows the capability of the generic 10 kW Laser Weapon Demonstrator to track and to destroy the target.

From these results the next steps of Rheinmetall Waffe Munition for a 100 kW class laser weapon are explained.

Paper Details

Date Published: 8 November 2012
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 8547, High-Power Lasers 2012: Technology and Systems, 854704 (8 November 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.977780
Show Author Affiliations
Klaus Ludewigt, Rheinmetall Waffe Munition GmbH (Germany)
Thomas Riesbeck, Rheinmetall Waffe Munition GmbH (Germany)
B. Schünemann, Rheinmetall Waffe Munition GmbH (Germany)
A. Graf, Rheinmetall Waffe Munition GmbH (Germany)
Markus Jung, Rheinmetall Waffe Munition GmbH (Germany)
Th. Schreiber, FraunhoferInstitute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering (Germany)
Ramona Eberhardt, FraunhoferInstitute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering (Germany)
A. Tünnermann, FraunhoferInstitute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8547:
High-Power Lasers 2012: Technology and Systems
Harro Ackermann; Willy L. Bohn, Editor(s)

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