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Old 06-19-2020, 07:22 PM
mmartin798 mmartin798 is offline
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Default Looking for comments on 4E Mk 1 Laser Installation

I am trying to work out the installation details for the Mk 1 Laser in 4E. The description is rather vague as to the details other than vehicle-mounted and the power output. Going back to 3E for some guidance was not fruitful, as the 4E Mk 1 is roughly the 3E Mk 2, and the specs are radically different. So I headed off into the real world.

I took a look at all the available information I could quickly find on the AN/SEQ-3 or XN-1 LaWs developed by the US Navy. To get the ~50kw of the LaWS, they use fiber lasers inside the ship and use fiber optic cable to combine and aim the inside the beam director. Since this system came about because of advances in solid-state welding lasers, I took a look there and found that they top out, currently, at about 10kw. Since the LaWS combines 6 beams from all the source material I can see, I made the assumption that they use 6 of the 10kw lasers. Since each of these lasers are approximately 800mm x 1000mm x 1330 mm, 6 of them make a nice little package about 1600mm x 1000 mm x 1330 mm plus a little for cooling, conduit connects and so on.

If we assume the 4E Mk 1 is similarly configured, all we need to is determine the size of the solid-state lasers it uses. The ideal place to start was the 4e Mk 2 laser. The Mk 2 is man-portable and puts out 50kw. This seems a reasonable power output for a single laser using future tech brought back from a future. To get the 200kw of the Mk 1, we just hook up 5 Mk 2 lasers without the optics and pipe the laser energy to the Mk 1 beam director. Given that all Project lasers have a thermal problem, they must not pump active cooling through it, so the 5 laser feeding the beam director can probably fit into 650mm x 650mm x 500mm casing to give room for the power connections and fiber out.

So if we go with this, we have 200kg for the lasers. This leaves 1000kg for the beam director, the gimbal, the drive motors and the sensor suite. To give the Mk 1 its counter rocket, artillery and mortar (C-RAM) capabilities, it needs a good sensor suite. The three-fold system used by Phalanx CWIS would work. It is what the LaWS uses, though it uses the sensors mounted ON the CWIS and does only has optical tracking on the LaWS itself. We could also use a sensor like the Raytheon built AN/MPQ-64 Sentinel and/or KuRFS. The Sentinel can handle slow aircraft and large ground vehicles while the KuRFS can support C-RAM operations. The problem is that either of those systems would probably use up the 1000kg we have left. This is a problem.

We can assume that there is a more advanced sensor suite than currently available to guide the Mk 1 Laser. But then why do we only have AN/PPS-5 ground surveillance radar and not something smaller, easier to deploy and offering full 360 and medium altitude coverage?

If anyone can see where I may have missed something, please leave a comment. Otherwise, I will just handwavium the parts that seem to need it.
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Old 06-27-2020, 05:49 PM
nuke11 nuke11 is offline
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Realistically this does sound like reasonable assumptions. I'm not up at all on real world lasers so what you find and think would work, sounds good.

It is one of those things that I really just gloss over in the rules as no one has ever wanted one in my games.

But you did peak my interest in replacing the ancient AM/PPS-5 thou.
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