Russia’s Almaz Antey has launched a project to develop airborne laser technologies to counter ground-based, aerial and space surveillance systems.
"As one of the priority areas of its work, JSC NPO Almaz views designing and testing a prototype of an airborne laser system to counter land-, sea-, air-and space-based surveillance systems in the infrared part of the spectrum," the company said in its annual report published Tuesday.
"Russia is building an aircraft equipped with new-generation laser weaponry. The project is being carried out as part of the Sokol-Echelon project," a source had told TASS previously.
The first A-60 aircraft, based on the Il-76MD transport plane, made its maiden flight as early as in 1981. The project was revived several years ago.
In US' aerial laser project, Boeing YAL-1 Airborne Laser Testbed was designed and built. It was cancelled in late 2011.