My favorite video
On Wednesday the Office of Naval Research (ONR) announced that it would approve an experimental laser weapon for use on the USS Ponce in the Persian Gulf. The laser weapon system is part of a $40-million research program to test directed energy weapons, and it is the first to be officially deployed and operated on a naval vessel.
The US Navy has been testing the use of this particular system since September (Ars reported on the planned tests in March). According to USNI News, the Navy spent a year developing new Rules of Engagement for the weapon that stipulated that humans should not be targets of the weapon, although details beyond that are not known. The weapon has a range of about a mile.
In speaking to USNI News, ONR Rear Admiral Matthew Klunder said that “The captain of [the USS Ponce] has all of the authorities necessary if there was a threat inbound to that ship to protect our sailors and Marines [and] we would defend that ship with that laser system.” Klunder added that the laser weapon system would be used against drones, helicopters, or patrol craft.
Read 3 remaining paragraphs | Comments