Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) delivered the first production Airborne Laser Mine Detection System (ALMDS) pod to the U.S. Navy in ceremonies here last week…
The ALMDS system is designed to operate from the MH-60S helicopter, using a Laser Imaging Detection and Ranging blue-green laser to detect, localize and classify near surface, moored and floating sea mines.
“Northrop Grumman has been aggressively pursuing emerging technologies to combat the growing threat from mines,” said Robert Johnston, director of Northrop Grumman’s Mine Countermeasures Program. “The transformational mine detection technology used in ALMDS is critical for creating safer passage around the world for our servicemen and women.”
“This milestone represents an important step forward as we are now delivering the next generation in mine countermeasures technology,” said Gary A. Humes, the Navy’s mine warfare program manager. “Because ALMDS has no in-water components, it will help shorten the detection timeline and maximize the helicopter’s time on station, thereby providing the maneuvering force with essential capability to dominate the complex, high-operational tempo environment of the littorals.”
That’s clearly an edited image, but I think you get the idea.
Various visual detection methods are in the works these days, as sonar’s capabilities are severely limited closer to shore.
The ALMDS will be part of the anti-mine package for the Littoral Combat Ship program.