Boeing’s industry team and the Missile Defense Agency successfully fired the Airborne Laser’s megawatt-class high-energy laser aboard the ABL aircraft in flight for the first time in a test over the southern California desert, Aug. 18, 2009. This test is a run-up to the ABL’s attempt to shoot down a boosting ballistic missile that is planned before the end of 2009. Here, the ABL test aircraft, a modified Boeing 747-400F, flies over Edwards AFB, Calif., during low-power laser tests, Aug. 10, 2009.
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