Washington: ‘The United States has taken a big step to catch-up to the advances of Russia and China, over the last one and a half decades. The US fighter jets will soon be armed with laser weapons to augment the capability of the US Air Force as also to strengthen the air defence,’ a senior US Air Force official announced. The US analysts have claimed that such laser-configured fighter jets would be a sharp reply for the hypersonic missiles of Russia and China.
Lockheed Martin, the leading US-based arms manufacturer had already made preparations to mount laser systems on the US warships. The XN-1 lasers have been successfully tested on board the Arleigh Burke-class destroyers in the last few years. Also, the US warships would be equipped with laser weapons in a few years, the US military analysts claim. Reports had surfaced of the ‘Laser’ or ‘Death Ray’ systems being mounted on the long-range US surveillance aircraft. However, the US Department of Defence has not disclosed any official information on the matter.
Eva Blaylock, spokeswoman for the Air Force Research Laboratory, informed that the US fighter jets would soon be armed with lasers. ‘The laser-configured fighter jets will provide an opportunity to target high-speed objects with precision. It will tremendously increase the capability of the US Air Force,’ Blaylock claimed. The US Air Force laboratory is carrying out experiments at a rapid pace for the use of laser weapons while the research has entered a critical stage for reducing the size of the laser pods, being installed on the warships to make them usable on the fighter jets.
‘The preliminary testing for the Laser Pods would be done on the large C-130 and C-17 aircraft of the US Air Force. After that, the laser pods will be configured on the super advanced F-35 Stealth fighter jets,’ Blaylock informed. ‘The laser pod will replace the Gun Pod in the fighter jets. It would enhance the attack capabilities of the fighter jets,’ the US Air Force claimed. After successful tests, the laser pods are believed would be installed on the US fighter jets by 2021.
Meanwhile, the US defence forces have admitted that China and Russia have taken the lead in the manufacture of hypersonic missiles while adding that the United States has accelerated the production of hypersonic weapons to regain the lead in the sector. Considering the scenario, the laser-configured US fighter jets would prove to be a warning bell for Russia and China, claim the US analysts and military press.