flag-icon-usa Tactical High Energy Laser (THEL)

thel
Originated From:United States
Possessed By:Israel
Range:10km
Basing:Land
Status:Terminated
In Service:1996 - 2005

The Tactical High Energy Laser (THEL) is a joint project designed by the U.S. and Israel. The THEL was designed in only four years and conducted five years of testing. During the tests, the THEL destroyed 46 rockets, artillery and mortar rounds in flight. According to Northrop Grumman, this included:

  • 28 Katyusha rockets, including salvos & a surprise attack
  • 5 artillery projectiles
  • 3 large caliber rockets
  • 10 mortars, including a salvo of three
  • 7 medium, 2 heavy and 1 light rockets / missiles were destroyed. 1

In 2005, the U.S. and Israel decided to discontinue developing the THEL after spending over $300 million. The decision came as a result of “its bulkiness, high costs and poor anticipated results on the battlefield.” 2

  1. “Tactical High Energy Laser (THEL).” Tactical High Energy Laser (THEL). N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Nov. 2012. <http://www.as.northropgrumman.com/products/thel/index.html>.
  2. Broad, William J. “HOSTILITIES IN THE MIDEAST: ANTIMISSILE WEAPON; U.S. and Israel Shelved Laser As a Defense.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 30 July 2006. Web. 07 Nov. 2012. <http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/30/world/middleeast/30laser.html>.
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Last updated: November 7, 2012 at 7:54 pm

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