Boeing says it has successfully tested a high-energy chemical laser aboard a C-130H aircraft in ground tests for the first time.

The company says the tests are “a key milestone for the Advanced Tactical Laser (ATL) Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration programme”.

ATL, which Boeing is developing for the US Department of Defense, will destroy, damage or disable targets with little to no collateral damage, supporting missions on the battlefield and in urban operations.

After conducting a series of additional laser tests on the ground and in the air, the company says the programme will “fire the chemical laser in-flight at mission-representative ground targets”.

The test team will fire the laser through a rotating turret that extends through the aircraft’s belly.

By staff writer