Laser technologies for Electronic warfare. A technical review


  • Markus Henriksson
  • Lars Sjökvist

Publish date: 2015-06-23

Report number: FOI-R--4089--SE

Pages: 45

Written in: Swedish


  • Laser
  • tactical laser weapons
  • dazzling
  • countermeasures
  • optical antennas
  • photon counting


This report reviews the technical progress of lasers and related technology and the impact on future electronic warfare systems. This is a large field, and thus the report is neither comprehensive nor technically detailed. The aim has been to give an overview of the field and the most important trends. The report is divided in application areas, functions and technology, with hyperlinks between the levels. The intention is not that it should be read from cover to cover, but that the reader should follow interesting and relevant themes using the links. One of the most important, and most spectacular, trends at the moment is that tactical laser weapons for air defence applications with effective range up to a few kilometres are being tested as full scale prototypes. Another important development is that high performance compact infrared lasers are becoming available and will make countermeasures against infrared seekers and sights available for more applications. A technology that is not yet fully developed, but that has a potential to fundamentally change laser systems, is optical antennas. This technology, which corresponds to phased array antennas for radar, provides the possibility to aim laser beams without mechanical movement and thus lasers for dazzling and other countermeasure applications could be mounted on the surface of a vehicle instead of in a pointing turret. The report has been written in the project "Laser i Telekrigstillämpningar" within FoT Telekrig