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World Aviation Defense & Security Industry News - Northrop Grumman
Northrop wins $40mn contract to work on SHiELD fighter self-protection system
The US defense contractor Northrop Grumman, based in Redondo Beach, California, has been awarded a $39,339,172 contract for Self-Protect High Energy Laser Demonstrator (SHiELD) Turret Research in Aero-Effects (STRAFE) program, the US Department of Defense announced yesterday August 23.
Northrop win 40mn contract to work on SHiELD fighter self protection system 640 001Artist's impression of STRAFE concept
(Credit: Northrop Grumman)
Under this contract, Northrop Grumman will develop and deliver an advanced beam control system for integration as part of a complete laser weapons system into a tactical pod on an US Air Force fighter aircraft. STRAFE will increase the knowledge and understanding of aero-optic disturbances in a supersonic environment by collecting data during engagement scenarios.

"Work will be performed at Redondo Beach, California; and Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico, and is expected to be complete by Aug. 31, 2021. (...) Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico, is the contracting activity," said the US DoD.

The US Air Force Research Laboratory issued a Request for Information in February 2016. US military scientists hope to validate the laser pod in a laboratory environment by 2017 and be ready for prototype demonstration by 2021, the RFI said.