MDA Wants Laser-armed Drone by 2023

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On June 13, the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) posted a business solicitation to the Federal Business Opportunities website for a high-altitude long-endurance (HALE) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) with a sufficient payload capacity for a high energy laser system designed for boost phase intercept (BPI) of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) in the 2023 timeframe. The solicitation reads, “The results of this RFI [request for information] will inform future program options for maturing BPI technology and capability following the current Low Power Laser Demonstrator (LPLD) effort.”