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German laser system is actually two lasers

A German company called Rheinmetall Defense recently conducted a test on its 50 kW high-energy laser at the company's proving grounds in Switzerland. The company says that its laser system passed all tests with flying colors.
The system consists of a pair of lasers mounted on Revolver Gun air defense turrets -- one of the lasers has 30 kW of power and the other supplies 20 kW of power. The laser system uses Beam Superimposing Technology to combine the two lasers into single higher intensity beam. The laser was tested on numerous targets including a 15 mm thick steel girder that it was able to slice from a distance of 1 km.

The second test for the laser system was conducted at a distance of 2 km and the system was able to shoot down drones as they nosedived towards the ground at 15 meters per second. The radar system component of the laser was able to track the drones during their descent from up to 3 km away from the laser.

The final test, and possibly the most impressive feat the laser accomplished during testing, was to show its ability to track and destroy a very small ballistic target. The laser system was able to detect and the target an 82 mm steel ball that was traveling at 50 meters per second and destroy it. The 82 mm diameter steel ball was meant to simulate an incoming mortar round.

The defense company also notes that the proving grounds in Switzerland where the tests were conducted offered weather that was less than ideal for laser system operation. The company says that the laser functioned in ice, rain, snow, and extremely bright sunlight.
The U.S. military is also extensively testing laser weapon systems.

Source: Singularity Hub

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By Ammohunt on 1/8/2013 2:00:28 PM , Rating: 2
I have a problem with energy weapons such as these. Assuming they are remotely mobile they could be used for less than nefarious purposes such as assassinations, populace control in cases such as civil unrest etc.. with little to no means of defense against their abuse; its along the same lines as using drones in civilian airspace.

RE: Concerns
By cfaalm on 1/8/2013 3:12:49 PM , Rating: 2
Steal your sister's make up mirror, that'll teach 'em.
No idea of the power requirements though. The input often exceeds the output by quite a bit so it wont run on a handful of duracels.

This looks like what they need on the Turkish/Syrian border right now.

RE: Concerns
By Jaybus on 1/8/2013 3:59:44 PM , Rating: 3
No. Your sister's makeup mirror has a reflectivity of perhaps 90%. Not bad for makeup applications, but still lets 10% of the light from the 50 kW laser through. 5 kW is more than adequate to burn a hole through the mirror backing in a few nanoseconds, after which the reflectivity goes to zero and all 50 kW gets through.

RE: Concerns
By roykahn on 1/8/2013 7:13:56 PM , Rating: 2
If they can act as a defense against drones then I see them as a good thing. Drones are used for assassinations and terrorist operations by the US government. Try directing your concern there.

RE: Concerns
By Ammohunt on 1/9/2013 9:37:47 AM , Rating: 2
In combat operations in foreign countries not even close to the same.

RE: Concerns
By roykahn on 1/9/2013 7:58:03 PM , Rating: 2
Semantics. One man's terrorism is another man's combat operation. Look up the definition that the Pentagon has for an enemy combatant and have a laugh. I suppose you could also
say the US uses enhanced interrogation techniques instead of torture. Perhaps preemptive strikes are also legal under international law. Sprinkling glitter over poop.

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