What Is It?
The Free Electron Laser (FEL) provides naval platforms with a highly effective and affordable defense capability against surface and air threats, future antiship cruise missiles and swarms of small boats. Utilization of FEL also allows an unlimited magazine with speed-of-light delivery.
How Does It Work?
FEL generates high-intensity laser light by utilizing the energy from unbound accelerated high-energy electrons. This technology is commonly used in the Department of Energy’s particle colliders for basic subatomic research. The FEL program is an investment by the Office of Naval Research to transition the accelerator technology from particle colliders to a future ship self-defense weapon system.
What Will It Accomplish?
FEL will equip U.S. ships that have high depth-of-fire with speed-of-light delivery, seconds dwell time and a deep magazine for a more powerful means of self-defense. It is a revolutionary weapon that will transform how the Navy fights future battles.