THAAD missile

Alfalight has been awarded a contract to supply ruggedised hardware for use in the US military’s terminal high-altitude area defence (THAAD) weapon system.

Under the terms of the $3.7m contract, the company will deliver high-quality lasers for THAAD’s laser-initiated ordnance system (LIOS), which was built by the Pacific Scientific Energetic Materials Company (PSEMC) as a subcontractor to THAAD prime contractor, Lockheed Martin.

Alfalight president and chief executive officer Mohan Warrior said: "This contract is a valued vote of confidence from our customer and builds on Alfalight’s many years of success in high-performance laser systems for defence and security.

"It highlights our capabilities for designing and manufacturing rugged, integrated laser systems for the most demanding and critical applications."

PSEMC California Operations general manager Scott Sypek said: "We are pleased to select Alfalight to supply the critical lasers that ensure the reliability and safety of the LIOS system."

The LIOS is designed to provide the THAAD interceptor missile with an innovative solution for controlling critical missile flight events, from launch to impact, using laser-light technology to initiate explosive charges.

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"We are pleased to select Alfalight to supply the critical lasers that ensure the reliability and safety of the LIOS system."

In addition, the technology offers protection against potential accidental initiation and EMS disruption.

A key element of the US ballistic-missile defence system (BMDS), the THAAD missile system is designed to intercept and destroy short, medium and intermediate ballistic missiles, using hit-to-kill technology.

Equipped with launchers, missiles, battle management / command, control, communications and intelligence (BMC3I) units and radars, the system defends the US and its deployed forces and allies against ballistic-missile threats during all phases of flight.

THAAD is claimed to be the only system capable of engaging ballistic missiles at both endo and exo-atmospheric altitudes.

Deliveries under the contract are scheduled to take place over an 18-month period.

Image: A terminal high-altitude area defence interceptor missile being launched during a previous test. Photo: courtesy of National Missile Defense image.

Defence Technology