Hello, Guest!

UK Accelerates Development of DragonFire Laser Weapon for Royal Navy

laser beam

The United Kingdom is accelerating the delivery timeline of its DragonFire lasers.

Grant Shapps, British defense secretary, says speeding up the program is a response to the “rapidly changing threat environment” in the region.

The DragonFire laser was initially scheduled to be rolled out by 2032. With the new timetable, the weapon system will be installed on Royal Navy ships by 2027.

“It’s designed to not wait until we have this at 99.9 percent perfection before it goes into the field, but get it to sort of 70 percent and then get it out there and then develop it from there,” said Shapps.

The defense technology underwent testing at the Ministry of Defence’s Hebrides Range in Scotland.

MBDA leads the U.K. DragonFire program in partnership with Leonardo and QinetiQ under a $124 million investment from industry and the MoD. 

DragonFire is a laser-directed energy weapon designed to use intense light to destroy threats to naval vessels. According to the MoD, the technology has the precision to hit a coin from a kilometer away.

Because it uses light, the U.K. sees DragonFire as a potential low-cost alternative to missiles. As long as there is a reliable power source, the line-of-sight weapon can continue firing with no limit to destroy attack drones and mortars.

Show Buttons
Hide Buttons