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(Fox News)   The US Navy has developed a real, honest-to-God laser gun, mounted it on a ship, and is about to begin live-testing it with the Fifth Fleet. Next step: sharks   (foxnews.com) divider line 225
    More: Cool, Fifth Fleet, U.S. Navy, laser guns, psychological testing, Buck Rogers, airborne lasers  
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14739 clicks; posted to Main » on 08 Apr 2013 at 6:09 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-04-08 07:28:10 PM  
That whole "banned against ground targets" thing is going right out the window the first time it's really needed.
 
2013-04-08 07:29:03 PM  

Theeng: hardinparamedic: cptjeff: Hmm- a college degree makes me eligible to be an officer, right?

It worked for FLYNAVY

I actually just got professionally recommended for OCS with a bachelors last month, still waiting on a final selection letter.

Been wary of saying anything because of FLYNAVY, and also because I haven't done shiat yet.


Bravo, Sir. I wish you luck in your career.

My knee failed me in Army Basic, so I got 4-F'd out. (Well, ELS in today's language. Had to outprocess with some real freaking sociopaths. -.- ). I've decided I'm going to finish my BSN, and then direct commission with either ARmy Medical as a nurse, or go Public Health Corps route. My lack of cartilage in my knee won't stop me there.
 
2013-04-08 07:29:08 PM  

Aarontology: Because we have all this extra money just laying around.


It was actually much cheaper to develop than a missile system, and if it can take even some of the role of missiles it will save quite a bit of money. And it has non-lethal uses too.
 
2013-04-08 07:29:15 PM  

DreamSnipers: The dirty secret of lasers is the effect on personnel. At longer ranges these powerful lasers can permanently blind people. The horrors of war are to include a weapon that can cause wholesale blindness among soldiers and affected noncombatants.
I felt the article was avoiding this issue with this quote "of obliterating small boats and unmanned aerial vehicles."  Sooner or later, blinding is going to be a major issue with these weapons.


If you're being targeted with a high powered laser like this, its intent is to take out you or the transportation you're using.  Currently, that's done by shooting projectiles out of a gun/cannon, or by rocket/missile.  With those, you have a high chance of being torn through by the projectile, or by being blown up.  And if the intended target is missed, then noncombatants have a good chance of being directly or indirectly hit.

So I really don't see what the difference is.  Blind or blown up.
 
2013-04-08 07:31:56 PM  
The SS Shoop da woop

memberfiles.freewebs.com
 
2013-04-08 07:35:30 PM  
The Ponce has been retrofitted to serve as an afloat forward operating base in the Persian Gulf, where it will be in the crosshairs of all kinds of Iranian cruise missiles if things go bad there.

I did some work on the Ponce cargo handling systems last year, and they were doing everything short of buying billboard space to advertise what they intend to do in the gulf with the ship. The situation kinda smells. I recommended they re-name the ship to "USS Tonkin Gulf"
 
2013-04-08 07:35:45 PM  

Rhino_man: On the PONCE? Seriously, Navy? You're going to put it on the oldest, shiattiest gator in service? The rest of its class was dismantled or sold to Spain YEARS ago. Its decommissioning has been postponed THREE TIMES. It doesn't have dedicated berthing spaces, PEOPLE SLEEP IN THE P-WAYS!

WTF, Navy? WTF are you thinking?


The laser gun and associated generators and machinery emit "comparatively safe" levels of radiation.  Nobody remembers the Ponce or its godforsaken crew, so when the glowing, crewless hulk is discovered in 6 months it can simply be scuttled with no one the wiser.

/I read about it in a magazine
 
2013-04-08 07:43:38 PM  
Just point the lasers aft of the ship. Propulsion by laser. Or point them off the prow and get sucked along from evaporated ocean. Or...
 
2013-04-08 07:44:39 PM  

hardinparamedic: FishyFred: Old news. These guns were mounted on Arnold Schwarzenegger years ago.

[i47.tinypic.com image 480x292]

point of order, those are coil guns.


Except they're not. They're rail guns.
 
2013-04-08 07:44:43 PM  

Doubleodoug: But can it pop popcorn?


Was wondering if anyone would see the Real Genius in this.
Well done.
 
2013-04-08 07:47:43 PM  
Anybody remember the Reagan Star Wars program? If I remember correctly, one of it's key assets was a very powerful x-ray laser. It's one shot deal because the damn thing was actually powered by a small nuke.

Yea, you got that right. Reagan wanted to hang small nukes over our heads, in geosynchronous orbit, just waiting to go off.
Imagine that scenario as one of them crashes through the city park trees, on it's way to exploding and wiping out a random decidedly non military local ground level target.
Or It could be Skynet really starts...
 
2013-04-08 07:48:44 PM  
In other news, the new "ultra-shiny mirror finish" for sea and aircraft has become increasingly popular among militaries around the world.
 
2013-04-08 07:50:31 PM  
Wouldn't technically have to be a hellstorm. Just enough junk to make orbit treacherous.
 
2013-04-08 07:50:47 PM  

lostcat: In other news, the new "ultra-shiny mirror finish" for sea and aircraft has become increasingly popular among militaries around the world.


Mirrors aren't Omani-directional, and may actually cause an even worse failure depending on how the light reflects out.
 
2013-04-08 07:51:19 PM  

hardinparamedic: Personally, I think it'd be farking awesome if wars were decided by gigantic paintball matches.


Rock-paper-scissors.
 
2013-04-08 07:51:48 PM  

ShadowKamui: lostcat: In other news, the new "ultra-shiny mirror finish" for sea and aircraft has become increasingly popular among militaries around the world.

Mirrors aren't Omani-directional, and may actually cause an even worse failure depending on how the light reflects out.


That was a joke.
 
2013-04-08 07:54:14 PM  
Fark lasers.  I want a phaser-maser-taser-blazer-laser.
 
2013-04-08 07:55:21 PM  

Yogimus: TheOtherMisterP: meat0918: I give it 4 decades after it's first use against ground based targets before it's banned for use against ground personnel, much like the flame thrower finally was banned in 2008.

Was that really a thing? Man, I would have LOVED to hear the legal debates about whether or not soldiers could fire flame-throwers at the enemy!

The argument was that there was no better way of accomplishing the task that would be as safe for the assaulters.  (Think caves)


Thermal grenades pretty much do the same thing.
 
2013-04-08 07:55:26 PM  

Click Click D'oh: 5th Fleet you say?

[images2.wikia.nocookie.net image 512x256]


Glad I'm not the only one.
 
2013-04-08 07:56:17 PM  

ShadowKamui: lostcat: In other news, the new "ultra-shiny mirror finish" for sea and aircraft has become increasingly popular among militaries around the world.

Mirrors aren't Omani-directional, and may actually cause an even worse failure depending on how the light reflects out.


lol...well played

/on purpose or not
 
2013-04-08 08:01:58 PM  
spectacularopticalcorp.files.wordpress.com
 
2013-04-08 08:03:27 PM  

meat0918: I give it 4 decades after it's first use against ground based targets before it's banned for use against ground personnel, much like the flame thrower finally was banned in 2008.


No one uses them any more.  The US quit using them in the late 70s.   They might as well have banned spiked maces, too.
 
2013-04-08 08:05:14 PM  

Mock26: Fark lasers.  I want a phaser-maser-taser-blazer-laser.


What you really need is a Quad laser.

/jumping is useless!
 
2013-04-08 08:07:10 PM  

snake_beater: Click Click D'oh: 5th Fleet you say?

[images2.wikia.nocookie.net image 512x256]

Glad I'm not the only one.


Hack it out, you two.
 
2013-04-08 08:11:51 PM  

Sanguine Dawn: First of all, you don't "burn" mist. The problem with lasers is that they are light and are subject to refraction and diffusion. More moisture = more dissipation of the beam. This also limits the effectiveness of lasers in ANY atmosphere (even a dry one) The effectiveness of this weapon over a distance will not be cost effective to achieve. A more reasonable development for energy weapons is in directed particle cannons that fundamentally turn the air into a superconductor and then electrify it, frying directional computers and possibly igniting warheads.

Think of the idea that missiles will become obsolete as directed energy defenses become the situational norm, their trump being magnetic rail sabots. Directed energy will be unlikely to stop a tungsten rod flung with little heat signature from miles and miles away.

Though, lasers would definitely be useful in space. Nothing's gonna help us if we start laser-shredding up eachother's satellites in orbit. Imagine a giant whirling hellstorm of fractured nearly forever in orbit that rips everything we send up there to ribbons, effectively blocking us from meaningful use of space. Freaky eh?


Indeed. If I were a rogue state/non-state actor, that would be some nasty terrorism. Set up some kind of energy weapon (or recoiless rifle) in space, cut down national and commercial satellites (or just nudge them out of orbit), and watch the debris clouds fly. Bad news for the longevity of what's up there, unless you want to start armoring satellites at ludicrous cost.

/at least until someone invents kinetic barriers
 
2013-04-08 08:11:54 PM  

fusillade762: What you really need is a Quad laser.


This post descent-approved..
 
2013-04-08 08:14:54 PM  
I WANT ONE!!!
 
2013-04-08 08:16:56 PM  
Iran, you suck at Photoshop:

US, you suck at After Effects and Premiere.
 
2013-04-08 08:17:30 PM  

hardinparamedic: FishyFred: Old news. These guns were mounted on Arnold Schwarzenegger years ago.

[i47.tinypic.com image 480x292]

point of order, those are coil guns.


I think you meant rail guns
 
2013-04-08 08:19:05 PM  

lostcat: ShadowKamui: lostcat: In other news, the new "ultra-shiny mirror finish" for sea and aircraft has become increasingly popular among militaries around the world.

Mirrors aren't Omani-directional, and may actually cause an even worse failure depending on how the light reflects out.

That was a joke.


Why a joke? I'd think that a mirror (tuned to relevant frequencies; here in the IR gold film on mylar might be good) would be an inexpensive and moderately effective defense. As Larry Niven advises, "Never fire a laser at a mirror"
 
2013-04-08 08:22:10 PM  

Rhino_man: One more point about the Ponce: It has THE VIETNMAN CAMPAIGN RIBBON ON ITS AWARDS RACK. Also, the mess decks are tiny, and smell like rancid fish half the time... even on days when they don't serve fish.

OK, so that was two more points.

Why yes, I *have* served aboard that pile of shiat, why do you ask?


What years & Division?  The reason I ask is one of my former shipmates, transferred to the Ponce in '89.

/former USS Portland engineer
 
2013-04-08 08:25:16 PM  
Not impressed.

Nice!
 
2013-04-08 08:26:25 PM  
You know, if anything, this should scare the shiat out of Iran and North Korea for more then any of our military deployments.  They're still playing with sticks and stones and 30+ year old air craft / tank technology, etc, and we're PUTTING farkING LASERS ON SHIPS.
 
2013-04-08 08:29:12 PM  

DreamSnipers: The dirty secret of lasers is the effect on personnel. At longer ranges these powerful lasers can permanently blind people. The horrors of war are to include a weapon that can cause wholesale blindness among soldiers and affected noncombatants.
I felt the article was avoiding this issue with this quote "of obliterating small boats and unmanned aerial vehicles."  Sooner or later, blinding is going to be a major issue with these weapons.


Should we ban stone burners too?
 
2013-04-08 08:30:58 PM  

AndreMA: lostcat: ShadowKamui: lostcat: In other news, the new "ultra-shiny mirror finish" for sea and aircraft has become increasingly popular among militaries around the world.

Mirrors aren't Omani-directional, and may actually cause an even worse failure depending on how the light reflects out.

That was a joke.

Why a joke? I'd think that a mirror (tuned to relevant frequencies; here in the IR gold film on mylar might be good) would be an inexpensive and moderately effective defense. As Larry Niven advises, "Never fire a laser at a mirror"


and if you're firing it at something the same color as the laser, be patient
 
2013-04-08 08:32:56 PM  

mark12A: "It operates much like a blowtorch ... with an unlimited magazine," one official said.I'd like to meet this "official". I'm selling stock in my perpetual motion machine company.

He means that you're not limited to a discrete number of ammo rounds like you are with guns/missiles. As long as the ship has fuel, it can generate power for many laser shots until ship's fuel runs out.

We're working on electric ship technology that features multiple power generators scattered around the ship, electric propulsion, electric catapults, electric weapons, and switching technologies for routing power between propulsion and weapons as needed. I like working for the Navy. We do cool stuff.

/except Thursday.
//Spent Thursday curled up on a cargo pallet in the Helo hangar on the USS Ft. Worth with a nasty cold while the ship ripped along at 40 kts doing steep turns.
//got up only to do my test events


aww...

and don't forget the nuclear power

nuclear

power

.
 
2013-04-08 08:35:00 PM  

Nutsac_Jim: dont forget how rain makes the steal bombers totally visible and makes them ineffective.


Nothing is more ineffective than stolen bombers.
 
2013-04-08 08:39:30 PM  
Geneva Convention 2.0 anyone?

/in B4 military-minded jack-wipes that are incapable of furthering humankind?
// nope, late to party
///enjoy your paycheck/my taxes
////and your mallcop job whenever you get off the government dole
 
2013-04-08 08:42:12 PM  
johnny_vegas:

congratulations and good luck

hardinparamedic:
Bravo, Sir. I wish you luck in your career.

My knee failed me in Army Basic, so I got 4-F'd out. (Well, ELS in today's language. Had to outprocess with some real freaking sociopaths. -.- ). I've decided I'm going to finish my BSN, and then direct commission with either ARmy Medical as a nurse, or go Public Health Corps route. My lack of cartilage in my knee won't stop me there.



Thanks guys, and that sounds like a plan hardin.

Oh forgot to say it's navy OCS, trying for SWO.
 
2013-04-08 08:42:38 PM  
Your move gun nuts that will take on the government.

/Go on, tell me how you're thirty round clip will defend you from fikkin' lasers.
 
2013-04-08 08:43:03 PM  

DreamSnipers: The dirty secret of lasers is the effect on personnel. At longer ranges these powerful lasers can permanently blind people. The horrors of war are to include a weapon that can cause wholesale blindness among soldiers and affected n.
I felt the article was avoiding this issue with this quote "of obliterating small boats and unmanned aerial vehicles."  Sooner or later, blinding is going to be a major issue with these weapons.


I dunno about this. Infrared lasers don't cause a photochemical reaction in the eye, so nerve damage isn't possible from "overloading" in the same way it would be with a visible light laser. The real danger from infrared lasers is that they will heat the liquid inside your eye and you won't even realize it because the beam is invisible. However, unlike scientific and industrial lasers, this laser is not used at close range and atmospheric effects are naturally going to de-collimate the beam. Thus, you're probably getting hit with a beam something like a foot in diameter, so you're just as likely to have your face melted as you are to sustain laser eye damage.

Your retinas do focus near-infrared laser energy though, so the real question is whether the laser is powerful enough to blind you instantly but not face-melt you, or if it's going to melt your face anyway.
 
2013-04-08 08:43:42 PM  

violentsalvation: Aarontology: Because we have all this extra money just laying around.

It was actually much cheaper to develop than a missile system, and if it can take even some of the role of missiles it will save quite a bit of money. And it has non-lethal uses too.


Yeah, I hear that if you synchronize it to Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" album, and hand out a little free herbage, you'll finally achieve lasting peace in the Middle East.
 
2013-04-08 08:46:54 PM  

chuggernaught: Your move gun nuts that will take on the government.

/Go on, tell me how you're thirty round clip will defend you from fikkin' lasers.


Shoot the guy working the laser. Duh.
 
2013-04-08 08:52:30 PM  

Nutsac_Jim: Running a-puck: This is fantastic!  Lasers work great.  Well, unless the air is misty or even really humid, thank Poseidon that never happens on the ocean.

dont forget how rain makes the steal bombers totally visible and makes them ineffective.   And GPS bombs.. easily totally defeatable


[citation needed]
 
2013-04-08 08:55:27 PM  

Somaticasual: Had em' in concept since the 80s, in practice since the 90s, and in play since the mid 2000s


Did you rtfa?

The air-mounted lasers cost 1.5 billion each, and were expensive to operate, and were eventually cancelled.

These cost 32 million each, and cost $1 per "round" of power, and are going into service in 2014.

Its not so much the overall technology - its that it is now realistically affordable, and accurate (12 for 12 anyway)
 
2013-04-08 08:58:01 PM  

alienated: Rhino_man: On the PONCE? Seriously, Navy? You're going to put it on the oldest, shiattiest gator in service? The rest of its class was dismantled or sold to Spain YEARS ago. Its decommissioning has been postponed THREE TIMES. It doesn't have dedicated berthing spaces, PEOPLE SLEEP IN THE P-WAYS!

WTF, Navy? WTF are you thinking?

Oldest ? Thats the Denver ....


The constitution (1797) is still in service...
 
2013-04-08 08:59:05 PM  

chuggernaught: Your move gun nuts that will take on the government.

/Go on, tell me how you're thirty round clip will defend you from fikkin' lasers.




After the events of Cambodia, Bosnia, Somalia, etc... I've always wondered why people think big ticket military hardware (which they don't control) protects them from their neighbors.
 
2013-04-08 08:59:50 PM  

Treetop1000: Anybody remember the Reagan Star Wars program? If I remember correctly, one of it's key assets was a very powerful x-ray laser. It's one shot deal because the damn thing was actually powered by a small nuke.

Yea, you got that right. Reagan wanted to hang small nukes over our heads, in geosynchronous orbit, just waiting to go off.
Imagine that scenario as one of them crashes through the city park trees, on it's way to exploding and wiping out a random decidedly non military local ground level target.
Or It could be Skynet really starts...



Star wars was a bluff intended to bankrupt and demoralize the Soviet Union. We didn't have the technology to do any of it, in fact we still don't.

It was quite interesting in the 1970's you had the B-1 and the tomahawk cruise missile which both specialize in slipping under radar at low levels. Soviet Union spent billions upgrading their Air defense to specifically counter this threat. And then as soon as they were done America sprang the B-2 stealth bomber on them which made their fancy new air defense system obsolete. Then Reagan announces SDI which would make Soviet ICBM's useless. The soviets couldn't match this but what they didn't know is we couldn't do it either. America didn't have to build it they only had to convince the Soviet's that they could and would build it. This along with cheap Saudi oil depressing the value of Russia's oil exports bankrupted the Soviet Union and ended the cold war.
 
2013-04-08 09:01:40 PM  

way south: chuggernaught: Your move gun nuts that will take on the government.

/Go on, tell me how you're thirty round clip will defend you from fikkin' lasers.

After the events of Cambodia, Bosnia, Somalia, etc... I've always wondered why people think big ticket military hardware (which they don't control) protects them from their neighbors.


Those aren't our neighbors. The big ticket military hardware is there to protect us from our truly evil neighbors. The Canadians.
 
2013-04-08 09:10:55 PM  

Danger Avoid Death: violentsalvation: Aarontology: Because we have all this extra money just laying around.

It was actually much cheaper to develop than a missile system, and if it can take even some of the role of missiles it will save quite a bit of money. And it has non-lethal uses too.

Yeah, I hear that if you synchronize it to Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" album, and hand out a little free herbage, you'll finally achieve lasting peace in the Middle East.


Well, lets say some Iraqi boat is making hostile movements (like they were a few months ago) - we don't want to shoot them. But we can set the laser on low - say150 degrees (F) - and heat them them until they leave. Or we just burn their flag off their mast, for grins. Non-lethal, cheap, and lulzy.

Heck, we could even write graffiti on the side of their boat. Not that I would condone it, but writing "Justin Beiber is totally hot!" on the side of an Iraqi warship would be entertaining.

This is the beauty of using lasers. You can dial them down more than you can a bullet/missile, while simultaneously hit a remote target much farther away with greater accuracy.
 
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