There has been a lot of talk about a new generation of military weapons lately. Long ago when baby boomers were growing up, they never thought those laser battles they were watching in the Star Wars movies would ever turn into reality, but that is exactly what is happening with today’s new military technology. We are seeing a whole new range of weapons that are designed to keep us one step ahead of our enemies, and do it in a way that is cost effective.
In 2014, the Navy again successfully tested its electromagnetic rail gun. The gun is designed to hurl simple projectiles at speeds of seven times the speed of sound. The 23 pound projectiles have been said to be able to travel over 100 miles and hit targets accurately. The gun uses sophisticated electromagnetic technology to supply the force to move the projectiles. With the successful land test in 2014 now completed, the Navy plans shipboard testing in 2016. It will be interesting to see if those trials bring further success and advanced development of this space age weapons system.
The Navy did not stop with the development of the rail gun as its only new space-age style weapon. The Navy has also been working on a new laser prototype that would help the Marines carry out their various missions. The laser in development would be able to be mounted on vehicles such as a Humvee. Currently, the focus of development is to repel the increasing threat from unmanned drones, which is becoming a new reality as the drone technology is being made available to more and more countries that otherwise might not have air to ground attack capabilities. The laser prototype will give the Marines an additional layer of protection which will be sorely needed in the future.
Lockheed Martin is trying to get the Navy and other military branches to take a serious look at their laser based weapons systems too. They have not produced a weapon like the “Death Star” that can disintegrate entire planets, but they have made great strides in developing a potential laser system that could effectively and economically cause our enemies a variety of problems.
Lockheed Martin’s 30 Watt fiber-optic laser system is the most powerful of its kind yet to be produced. In early March, the Advanced Test High Energy Asset (ATHENA) prototype was ground tested against a vehicle. Incredibly, the weapon disabled the vehicle’s engine when fired at a distance of over a mile away and it did so in just a matter of a few seconds. The goal for Lockheed Martin is to keep investing in the system to make it lighter, more powerful and more efficient. The company said it could be used effectively by all branches of the service once the technology is developed further.
So, the next time you are taking in a movie and you see some great special effects, don’t be surprised if 30 years from now those same special effects weapons are being tested for real by the military or one of its major suppliers.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.
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