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ADS ACTD System 1 mounted on a Hummer  (Source: Wired)

Raytheon is working on the device's successor, the Silent Guardian  (Source: Mail Online)
Device may live on in smaller version used by law enforcement

After a lengthy test phase, the U.S. Army has decided that it will not use one of its most tested non-lethal weapons:  the ADS.

The story of the ADS begins with the U.S. Military's interest in creating non-lethal solutions to disperse angry crowds and other hostile parties.  From sonic weapons to strobe lights, many exotic solutions have been tried, though none have been broadly embraced by the U.S. armed forces.

Among the most intriguing non-lethal weapons was the Humvee-mounted "pain ray" cannon, a 95 GHz microwave heat ray formally known as the Active Denial System (ADS).  The device, which has a range of 500 meters, was manufactured by Communications and Power Industries (CPI), a Palo Alto, California-based defense contractor.

The ray was supposedly safe, creating a sensation of intense burning and pain.  As the waves were of higher frequency than those of a typical food microwave oven (2.45 GHz) they only penetrated 1/64 of an inch into the skin, lowering the risk of tissue damage or cancer.  While there were concerns about long term effects of exposures, the ray was purportedly safe.

CPI was awarded a $6.4M USD contract in 2004 to produce two of the weapons, and by 2007 had a working product.  After reportedly being considered in 2006 for an Iraq deployment, the device was finally shipped to Afghanistan in 2010 for field testing.

The ray was tested 11,000 times on over 700 people, including a Reuters journalist, who commented, "Similar to a blast from a very hot oven – too painful to bear without diving for cover."

Despite relative success, the BBC News is reporting that the U.S. armed forces leadership has confirmed that the device has been shipped out of Afghanistan and will not see its first official action in the field.

Colonel Shanks, Chief of Public Affairs for ISAF comments, "The ADS was not used and was shipped from Afghanistan. The operational need for the device was not approved by commanders."

No specific reason was given for the decision to pull the device.

Even if that spells the end for the cannon prototype, the device may live on in a smaller version of the ADS, the Silent Guardian.  Defense contractor Raytheon is working on the device which it looks to market to law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.  The joystick-aimed cannon has a range of 550 meters.  Raytheon also looks to market the device to the military.

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I wonder...
By Devil07 on 7/27/2010 4:20:31 PM , Rating: 5
Will they make one for civilian use....i.e. for use on my neighbors dog that keeps crapping in my yard.

RE: I wonder...
By AntiM on 7/27/2010 4:35:06 PM , Rating: 4
This thing is designed for civilian use. I don't think they ever planned on rolling out a "pain ray" to use on armed combatants. This thing is clearly meant for civilian crowd control and dispersement.

RE: I wonder...
By Devil07 on 7/27/2010 5:02:58 PM , Rating: 5
Civilian use, as in, I want to buy one, not be some poor sap that gets one of these aimed at them.

RE: I wonder...
By WinstonSmith on 7/28/2010 9:45:36 AM , Rating: 2
"This thing is designed for civilian use. I don't think they ever planned on rolling out a "pain ray" to use on armed combatants."

Exactly what I've said since I first heard about this thing in development. They won't use this sort of thing in an Iraqi or Afghan crowd that could easily have a rocket propelled grenade somewhere in it which could take it out effortlessly. A $10 weapon taking out a $3.2 million waste of money.

RE: I wonder...
By Goty on 7/27/2010 5:50:40 PM , Rating: 2
They already have something for that; it's called a pellet gun. =P

RE: I wonder...
By superPC on 7/27/2010 8:55:17 PM , Rating: 2
How effective would this thing be as a weapon? 500 meter range only to induce pain? a guy in that range could easily shoot that huge antennae on top and the weapon would be useless.

RE: I wonder...
By marvdmartian on 7/28/2010 11:33:53 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah, I was thinking to myself that the dish on top of that Humvee would make the perfect target for, oh, insurgent with an RPG??

RE: I wonder...
By skyyspam on 7/28/2010 4:03:10 AM , Rating: 2
Dude, I would SO love to fry my neighbor's dog that won't shut up. Perfect!

RE: I wonder...
By shaw on 7/28/2010 9:12:36 AM , Rating: 1
[What really happened]
<Sargent> Okay power it up.
*Oblieske of light power up sound**BEZOOOM*
<Soilder> ARGH! *turned into dust*
<Eva> Unit lost.
<Sargent> No, that's not gonna work.

RE: I wonder...
By umop apisdn on 7/28/2010 10:01:35 AM , Rating: 2
I dunno who could down-rate a C&C player. +1 back to you sir.

RE: I wonder...
By Smilin on 7/28/2010 4:33:58 PM , Rating: 2
BTW, buddy did this..

They make these bark supressors that hear a bark then immediately emit a inaudible high frequency noise. The whole thing comes in this birdhouse looking contraption so you can hang it in your yard and the neighbor won't know why his dog tucks tail and runs every time he barks.

He's got two and swears by it. One neighbor even offered to keep the batteries full if he could hang one of the two in his own yard (the dog bugs LOTS of neighbors).

Be afraid.
By Smilin on 7/27/2010 4:37:48 PM , Rating: 5
Non-lethal weapons like this are terrifying.

Large crowds of people do not get angry and amass in a vacuum. In some form or another there is a *reason* people will form angry mobs.

If a govornment has the power to suppress such a mob then it will have no reason to listen to it.

Non-lethal weapons are a device of pure oppression.

But it's better than killing you say? In the short term, yes. Long term, no. If a mob gets so angry that innocent people will be hurt then you KILL the mob or at least enough of them to disperse. After that you WILL be held accountable for your actions. If your violence is justified so be it. If not, you pay.

This scenario must be allowed to play out though. If that mob is angry then you must choose: Kill or Listen. If killing is so abhorent then your choice is obvious. Same thing on the reverse. If you're in a mob faced down by men with guns then you need to decide if you wish to be peaceful or violent (and possibly be shot). If your cause is worth it then proceed. If not, then be make due with peaceful protest.

These views align closely with my strong beliefs in the 2nd amendment. Sometimes you just need to shoot someone. As long as you are to be judged (and possibly sentenced) for your actions then this should be *possible*. To remove the possibility is to remove choice.

RE: Be afraid.
By priusone on 7/27/2010 5:26:42 PM , Rating: 2
So much for going to a protest to get a shower. But seriously, this thing would rock for clearing the kids away from a hmmwv.

RE: Be afraid.
By Cr0nJ0b on 7/27/2010 5:45:35 PM , Rating: 2
Large crowds of people do not get angry and amass in a vacuum. In some form or another there is a *reason* people will form angry mobs.

Like a Lakers Victory? The loss of your favorite football team to a cross town rival? A surfing championship?

Yeah, uncontrollable mobs are a good thing for democracy. And people never, ever do stupid things in mass...

My only question is, will it pop popcorn? cause that will make the next peace sit-in so much more enjoyable.

RE: Be afraid.
By Smilin on 7/28/2010 10:05:49 AM , Rating: 4
Nobody cares if you use it on a "Lakers" mob but if you build it for a "Lakers" mob then it will eventually be used on an "stolen election" mob.

People are more than capable of doing stupid stuff in mobs. Teargas and battons work fine. When people *really* get out of hand then they get shot and that works fine too.

With angry mobs it's a matter of "suppress or listen".
With violent mobs it's a matter of "kill or listen".

In both cases there is the option to listen if you don't like the alternative. The "kill" alternative in particular is obviously undesirable and will have consequences.

With a device such as the one in the article authorities have no incentive to listen. They can suppress with no consequence whatsoever.

And once you show a population that they will never ever be listened to then that's when the REAL violence will begin.

RE: Be afraid.
By tastyratz on 7/28/2010 12:38:02 PM , Rating: 1
With a device like this they have just as much incentive to listen as they do using bean bags batons and bitch slaps. The difference being that its a more effective use of manpower resources, reduces risk of brutality (hit a little too hard and a little too many times), discrimination, and permanent damage effectively (pending cancer research and such)

Consider other non lethals such as electric shock which can kill those with heart conditions and pacemakers, batons can break bones and deliver accidental lethal blows, and bean bags which like your old red rider can take an eye out, etc.

This is much more controlled over tear gas and flash bangs.

Believe me if the government wants to stop an angry mob they will - whether it be by means of sheer force or converting you to a 7-11 burrito. The means don't impact the intentions.

RE: Be afraid.
By Smilin on 7/29/2010 3:56:37 PM , Rating: 2
Believe me if the government wants to stop an angry mob they will - whether it be by means of sheer force or converting you to a 7-11 burrito. The means don't impact the intentions.

Absolutely agreed. They'll stop you if they wish but their methods will produce a reaction in itself. Look at Tiananmen Square. A device like this could have saved many lives (that's good) and utterly silenced that crowd so that the rest of the world never heard about the problem (that's bad).

There are serious reprecussions when you shoot into a crowd so govornments don't do it. The power of those thousands of witnesses keeps them in check and allows the voices to speak.

RE: Be afraid.
By Goty on 7/27/2010 5:53:22 PM , Rating: 3
Large crowds of people do not get angry and amass in a vacuum.

Well, assuming the Universe is flat (and therefore infinite), they do somewhere.

RE: Be afraid.
By BladeVenom on 7/27/2010 7:42:30 PM , Rating: 2
If they amassed in a vacuum they would all suffocate.

RE: Be afraid.
By DigitalFreak on 7/27/2010 8:46:46 PM , Rating: 2
Depends on the vacuum. They may just get dirty, though I suppose they could get caught in a vortex if it was a Dyson.

RE: Be afraid.
By Josett on 7/27/10, Rating: 0
RE: Be afraid.
By marvdmartian on 7/28/2010 11:36:53 AM , Rating: 2
Geez, what fantasy universe do you live in? How about the last G20 summit? Or every time a controversial trial decision comes out in Oakland, California??

Personally, I hope the military brought it back to use at the funerals of those that died in combat, that the whackos from that church keep protesting. In fact, I'd pay good money to watch this thing turned on those SOB's.

RE: Be afraid.
By Smilin on 7/28/2010 3:23:27 PM , Rating: 2
Geez, what fantasy universe do you live in? How about the last G20 summit? Or every time a controversial trial decision comes out in Oakland, California??

And that's exactly what I'm talking about. People have some very legitimate gripes at the G20. You don't agree so you think they should be suppressed. I don't want this device in your hands.

As for the whackos at the military funerals: It's not really violent so the situation doesn't apply. If they did turn violent then again, no nonlethal suppression device is needed at all. You simply
1) Listen to what they have to say
2) You respond with physical (and possibly lethal) force.

I have no desire to hear what they have to say and I'm willing to take responsibility for my actions. Guess what I would do?

RE: Be afraid.
By iNGEN2 on 8/23/2010 12:58:47 PM , Rating: 2
Denying people the ability to protest en masse is akin to closing the relief valve on a boiler. The pressure will continue to build until it eventually explodes. People who can't protest will eventually seek more drastic means of communicating their dissatisfaction. That's a bad thing!

By supermitsuba on 7/27/2010 4:23:44 PM , Rating: 5
Everytime I see any commerical ads, they have the same effect on me

i know someone who can use that
By cokbun on 7/27/2010 11:34:15 PM , Rating: 2
just sell them to iran, ahmadinejad can put it on his presidential camel

By DoeBoy on 7/28/2010 11:12:51 AM , Rating: 2
I guess I need a tin foil cape on to make sure I dont get hit with it if I am tryin to run from the cops.

"Young lady, in this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!" -- Homer Simpson

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