A consortium of Rheinmetall Waffe Munition and MBDA Deutschland has secured a contract to create a laser weapon demonstrator for the German Navy.

The contract has been awarded by Germany’s Federal Office for Bundeswehr Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support (BAAINBw).

It also involves the consortium to integrate and support testing of the demonstrator onboard the German Navy frigate F-124 Sachsen.

According to Rheinmetall, the contract is valued ‘in the low double-digit million-euro range’.

The order will be shared in roughly equal parts between MBDA Deutschland and Rheinmetall Waffe Munition.

Under the task order, MBDA Deutschland will take over tracking of the operator’s console and will be responsible for tracking technology and command-and-control system integration.

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Meanwhile, Rheinmetall is responsible of the laser weapon station, the beam guiding system, cooling, and integrating the weapon system with the overall laser source demonstrator.

MBDA Deutschland laser business development head Doris Laarmann said: “The contract is an important step on the path to an operational high-energy laser system. Our two companies will apply their respective strengths to make this project a success on behalf of the German Navy.

“Once it’s installed, the demonstrator will also be used to test important aspects such as the interaction and function of the sensor suite, combat management system and effector as well as rules of engagement.”

Fabrication, testing and integration of the laser weapon demonstrator will be completed by the end of this year.

In August 2019, Rheinmetall and MBDA reached an agreement to collaborate on building a high-energy laser effector for the German Navy’s K130 corvette.