Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 5th September 2018.

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Photo of Kevan Jones Kevan Jones Labour, North Durham

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what steps he is taking to investigate the potential uses of directed energy on future UK armed forces platforms.

Photo of Stuart Andrew Stuart Andrew Assistant Whip, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is making a significant investment in the development of Directed Energy Weapons technology and continues to do so as part of its science and technology portfolio; this includes the development of Dragonfire, the UKs first Laser Directed Energy Weapon technology demonstrator.

The MOD recognises that directed energy technologies and systems are now reaching maturity. It has appointed a Senior Responsible Owner and established a Novel Weapons team to specifically investigate the military utility of Directed Energy Weapons. The team is addressing key enablers such as logistics, doctrine, interoperability and is also focused on understanding safety, legal and ethical aspects of deploying them as part of future military capability. It is undertaking this work with the front line commands and consulting with the UK supplier base; acting as a focal point for a cross defence effort.

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