Pentagon Throws Weight Behind Interception-Proof Laser Communication

BATTLEFORWORLD – May 31, 2017: In the 1960s American scientists suggested that lasers, which produced narrow intense beams of light, could one day be used for Earth and interplanetary communication by flashing coded signals back and forth.

But, on July 17, 1977, a Soviet satellite known as Cosmos 929, was launched. After the satellite was in orbit, it began to mystify satellite watchers because of its strange behavior in radio signals. Most observers were concluding at the time that it was un-manned, having detected no verbal communications; but the satellite was manned! A twin satellite, consisting of a command module and a separate beam weapon module. All communications between the crew of Cosmos 929 and the then Soviet tracking network were being carried out by modulated laser beams, which cannot be detected at all by anyone who is not directly in the beam path. So this technology that being developed on the United States has been discovered and used since 1977.

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SPUTNIKNEWS – May 31, 2017: The United States Pentagon has awarded a $45 million grant to explore the use of laser signals for battlefield communication. While the technology lags far behind the almost-universally used radio signals, Defense Department officials believe that a laser communication system would be significantly harder for enemy forces to tap into or interfere with.

That device was the Tactical Line-of-Sight Optical Communications Network, or TALON. Yes, the first two letters of “Tactical” get to be in the acronym, but the first letter of “Communications” doesn’t. The acronym might be awkward, but the device is promising. Manufactured by the Naval Research Laboratory, the TALON was described by lead researcher Linda Thomas as “basically fiber optic communications without the fiber.” The TALON emits a thin laser beam broadcast that another device can pick up and decode into a message, just like a pair of radios.

Thomas did not say the TALON’s exact range, but one Navy document had it at 43 miles. To accomplish a 760 percent increase in range, Thomas’s team had to find a way to prevent the laser beam from getting distorted as it travels. They also had to find a way to get the TALONs to find and communicate with one another – one downside of the highly concentrated laser beams is that if they miss, they miss completely. Link: Read Complete Article

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