Nov 10, 2023
BlueHalo has been awarded a contract from the United States Navy’s Office of Naval Research and Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren Division to develop a High Energy Laser (HEL) Directed Energy Weapon (DEW) prototype, integrated onboard the Marine Corp’s Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV). The company will adapt its LOCUST Laser Weapon System (LWS) for integration onto a JLTV, providing warfighters with advanced mobile air defense against unmanned aerial system (UAS) threats.
“With its superior target, acquisition, track, and defeat capabilities and its broad adaptability across both fixed-site and mobile applications, the LOCUST laser system is the perfect solution for rapid integration into systems like the JLTV to address our customers’ most complex challenges,” said Trip Ferguson, BlueHalo Chief Operating Officer. “We are proud to be the industry leader in Directed Energy technologies and honored that the U.S. Navy has entrusted BlueHalo to deliver this critical capability.”
The United States Marine Corps (USMC) is completing initial development and is launching full production of its Marine Air Defense Integrated Systems (MADIS), focused primarily on Ground Based Air Defense (GBAD) modernization efforts. The addition of BlueHalo’s LOCUST HEL system will provide critical Directed Energy counter-unmanned aerial system (C-UAS) capabilities, adding it to the system’s existing kinetic and electronic warfare components. BlueHalo will work with the systems integration team at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren Division to ensure compatibility and conduct “live fire” testing.
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The LOCUST system combines precision optical and laser hardware with advanced software, artificial intelligence (AI), and processing to enable and enhance the directed energy “kill chain”, which includes tracking, identifying, and engaging a wide variety of targets with its hard-kill HEL.
“LOCUST is a highly advanced, highly adaptable laser weapon solution. LOCUST has been installed for fixed-site ground-based protection. It has been palletized for easy transport and mobile defense. It has been integrated into existing customer infrastructure. Now, the U.S. Navy has turned to BlueHalo to integrate LOCUST’s Directed Energy capabilities onto a JLTV for threat protection while on the move,” said James Batt, BlueHalo Chief Growth Officer. “Customers continue to choose BlueHalo for our proven defense technologies and ability to rapidly transition innovations to mature prototypes and into full-rate production.”
This DEW prototype integration builds on BlueHalo’s support for the USMC MADIS program, which has utilized BlueHalo’s SkyView passive radio-frequency (RF) detection and tracking sensors to provide precision tracking of small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS) threats since 2018. SkyView continues to be a part of the MADIS architecture, delivering the latest SkyView-MPV3 earlier this year.
BlueHalo offers a full portfolio of layered C-UAS air defense technologies–delivering best-in-class, cost-effective, control-point solutions to warfighters. In addition to LOCUST and SkyView, these systems include Titan–an autonomous RF C-UAS solution that establishes a hemisphere of protection in less than 5 minutes without operator training, forcing drones to safely land without disrupting nearby communications or electronics. These layered C-UAS technologies are enabled by a proprietary data fusion system built on BlueHalo’s artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) expertise.