Laser markers

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Navy SEALs (1988), with an AN / PAQ-1 laser marker
Target lighting container DAMOCLES from Thales
Portable laser marker, type CILAS DHY 307.

A laser marker ( English laser designator ) is a device for illuminating military targets . It is used by laser-controlled weapon systems for target acquisition.


The mostly invisible laser beam is thrown from the device onto a potential target. Its frequency and modulation are coded . The beam is reflected and scattered from the surface of the target . As a result, he can be caught by a weapon system and lead it to the target.

There are numerous weapon systems that rely on this technology, such as: B. Paveway - bombs , air-to-ground missiles of the types AGM-114 Hellfire or AGM-65 Maverick or artillery -ammo M712 Copper Head .

Construction methods

Laser markers can be mounted on vehicles or aircraft (manned or unmanned ). There are also portable variants.


The target lighting container LITENING , originally developed for the Israeli Air Force , is now used on combat aircraft around the world , e.g. B. on F-16 , F-15E , A-10C or on the Eurofighter . The French Air Force uses the target mark containers Damocles company Thales in the 3rd generation.

Ground based

Often used by Forward Air Controllers , portable laser markers are used to mark targets for close air support , such as: B. the AN / PED-1 Lightweight Laser Designator Rangefinder (LLDR) from Northrop Grumman , which is used from a tripod , the SOFLAM ( Special Operations Forces Laser Marker ), also from Northrop , which can be held like binoculars, or the DHY 307 from the French laser manufacturer Cilas .

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Thales Group: Damocles von Thales. Retrieved February 12, 2013 .
  2. Northrop Grumman: AN / PED-1 LLDR Lightweight Laser Designator Rangefinder. Retrieved February 12, 2013 .
  3. Northrop Grumman: SOFLAM. (PDF) (No longer available online.) Archived from the original on August 16, 2011 ; Retrieved February 12, 2013 .
  4. CILAS: DHY 307. Retrieved February 12, 2013 .