Lockheed Martin's new weapon will greatly increase a military aircraft's ability to engage enemies and defend itself. That's because the laser is mounted on a 360-degree turret that allows the laser to lock on to aircraft and missiles that are above, below or behind it.
There were some concerns that large turret would affect the way the aircraft flew and cause turbulence. But, Lockheed Martin has other technologies in place that have take care of those worries and the test planes have flown well in initial tests.
“These initial flight tests validate the performance of our ABC turret design, which is an enabler for integrating high energy lasers on military aircraft,” said Doug Graham, vice president of advanced programs, Strategic and Missile Defense Systems, Lockheed Martin Space Systems.
That sounds like something straight out of Star Wars to me. But, surprisingly it's real. And, the first tests have shown that the weapon is probably close to being ready for action.