IDEX 2017: Poly reveals Silent Hunter fibre-optic laser system

20 February 2017

China's Poly Technologies defence marketing company has used the IDEX show held in Abu Dhabi from 19-23 February to reveal its Silent Hunter fibre-optic laser air defence system.

A full-scale version of the Silent Hunter's optical systems was displayed during IDEX. (Patrick Allen/IHS Markit)A full-scale version of the Silent Hunter's optical systems was displayed during IDEX. (Patrick Allen/IHS Markit)

Poly officials told Jane's that the system was used to help defend the 4-5 September 2016 G-20 Summit in Hangzhou, China, and is a more advanced version of its Low Altitude Laser Defending System (LASS) that was displayed later that month at the AAD defence show in South Africa.

According to its brochure, LASS has a maximum power of 30 kw and a range of 4,000 m. A Poly official said the Silent Hunter is capable of power levels greater than 30 kw, but fewer than 100 kw.

Whereas LASS is designed to defend against large numbers of slow unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), Silent Hunter's laser is credited with being able to penetrate five layers of 2 mm steel at 800 m, or 5 mm of steel at 1,000 m.

Poly is in the process of integrating a mm-wave radar to supplement its infrared and optical search and track system.

While Silent Hunter is not able to defend against mortar shells or other small artillery, Poly officials said they are developing more powerful versions as well as a version for naval applications.

In its fixed and mobile versions, Silent Hunter comprises a separate medium-truck size power unit and a similar sized equipment unit for the laser. Poly officials said that Silent Hunter is too heavy to develop into an airborne laser as currently configured.

The officials added that potential foreign customers are showing active interest in the system, although there have been no orders as yet.

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