Today’s new story seemingly comes right off the pages of a science fiction novel. In a recent report that was issued by the U.S. Navy, in association with the Department of Defense (DOD), warships mounted with powerful laser cannons are set to be deployed in waters around the globe to protect vital national interests in just one year.
The lasers are will be mounted on the decks of various warships, and are capable of decimating smaller vessels as well as air vessels using a powerful blast of infrared light. The laser cannons are in the prototype stage presently. According to a press release from the U.S. Navy, the new cannons will be mounted on the USS Ponce and then sent to the Middle East with the 5th fleet in 2014.
VIDEO OF LASER WARSHIPS
In the video below, you can see viable demonstration of these laser cannons. Note how powerful and precise the beams are. Also, be sure to note the devastation they cause to the targets.
“It operates much like a blowtorch … with an unlimited magazine,” one Navy official said.
One possible immediate application of these lasers is near the waters that border Iran. The reclusive and bellicose nation has a lengthy history of harassing U.S. peacekeeping ships using their unmanned drones, something that these laser cannons could easily shoot down over and over again. Since the cannons don’t require traditional ammunition, they can be powered by nuclear generators for nearly limitless usage.
In recent tests, the Navy concluded that the cannons have 100 percent effectiveness. The most recent test demonstrated that the cannons could obliterate stationary or moving targets on land, air or sea in seconds with an impressive 12/12 scoring on the last test.
You might recall a laser project that was being worked on by the Air Force, one that miserably failed and cost taxpayers more than $1.5 billion.
“Its weapon round costs about $1 to shoot,” said Rear Admiral Matthew Klunder. “This wasn’t demonstrated on a barge. This was on a naval warship. And the performance results were quite astounding.”
The new laser cannon by the Navy, dubbed the FEL (free electron laser), costs about $32 million per unit.
According to the Navy, the weapon operates beneath a kilowatt presently. They have stated that a megawatt class version will be in operation by 2020.