Diode lasers for missile defence

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Aculight Corporation has been awarded a subcontract from The Pennsylvania State University's Electro-Optics Centre (EOC) for $2.6m over a three-year period, to develop two types of semiconductor lasers for use in missile defence.

Aculight will work with the US Air Force Research Laboratory Directed Energy Directorate at Kirtland Air Force Base. The lasers will be used in advanced mid-infrared laser transmitters, for use in systems that will automatically detect, track and jam heat-seeking missiles to protect both military and commercial aircraft.

The researchers will work to increase laser efficiency and the output power of these devices, and Aculight will focus on establishing an industrial capacity to manufacture these lasers.