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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 drycrust3 on 1/8/2013 2:54:52 PM , Rating: 2
It doesn't really matter what percentage America pays, what matters is will America continue to pay and support NATO, and the answer currently is "no", the easily foreseeable outlook is America will cease being a financial contributer to NATO, and it will withdraw its forces from the region. How do I know this?
When I look at the US debt clock I see America's debt is increasing 2.5 times as fast as its GDP is going up, which means that as fast as America runs, they will never catch the debt car because it is speeding away from them. This means that it is only a matter of time before America must cease funding things like NATO. America needs to increase its GDP by 3 fold to get out of the situation they are now in.
For America to remain active in NATO then the EU will need to pay them, but I'm don't think EU politicians would have the stomach for that, which means American involvement will cease.
For NATO to remain a credible force, then the European members need to start behaving responsibly and start supporting it as though American involvement will cease, because it will cease.

By cfaalm on 1/8/2013 3:08:22 PM , Rating: 2
then the European members need to start behaving responsibly
Staying out of war will do, i.e. use a different vocabulary than GW Bush. We have enough issues on our hand that keep us from going to war right now.

By drycrust3 on 1/9/2013 5:03:43 AM , Rating: 2
Until that comes to pass, readiness will be the most prudent course of action.

The problem for America is they won't have the money to keep up even with their current state of readiness, let alone do the research necessary to stay ahead of everyone else.

By CubicleDilbert on 1/9/2013 2:01:42 PM , Rating: 5
Well, the question is: which country has attacked the USA in the past 60 years?
How many countries has USA attacked in the past 60 years?
Korea, Laos, Cambodia, Irak, Afganistan, Libya, Serbia, Macedonia,Grenada, Panama, Somalia...

So why should Europe spend a whole lot of money on weapons they don't need? The USSR is gone and so is the threat.

By drycrust3 on 1/9/2013 5:17:14 PM , Rating: 2
So why should Europe spend a whole lot of money on weapons they don't need? The USSR is gone and so is the threat.

One of the big lessons from WW2 was the importance of being prepared. It was only because one British Minister of Defence ordered a whole lot of Spitfires against the advice of the RAF that Great Britain had enough ... or rather just enough fighter planes to beat the Luftwaffe.
The real issue isn't whether Europe should or shouldn't have a military force, the real issue is that America has got themselves into such a seriously big financial hole that it's only a matter of time before America has to withdraw its forces from pretty well everywhere, and that everywhere includes Europe, and as such if Europe does want a credible defence force then they should start to reduce their expectations of American involvement and financial support, because like it or not, that is exactly what will happen.

"So, I think the same thing of the music industry. They can't say that they're losing money, you know what I'm saying. They just probably don't have the same surplus that they had." -- Wu-Tang Clan founder RZA
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