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Posted: 12/3/2007 3:05:31 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/3/2007 3:32:47 PM EDT by turbo_infidel]


link


Marines to Pentagon: We need a freaky deaky airborne death ray, statposted at 2:42 pm on December 3, 2007 by Allahpundit

Thunderbolts from the sky. They call it the Precision Airborne Standoff Directed Energy Weapon (PASDEW), I call it Zeusmania.
In the annals of awesomeness, this shall be the standard against which all future awesomeness is measured.

According to the Marines’ laser request, obtained by DANGER ROOM, this so-called Precision Airborne Standoff Directed Energy Weapon (PASDEW) wouldn’t just be an improved killed machine. It would also have particularly devastating psychological effects. Such weapons, when used against people, “can be compared to long range blow torches or precision flame throwers, with corresponding psychological advantages for [Coalition Forces] CF.”

In other words, the lasers don’t just kill people, but they kill people in really gruesome, frightening ways — particularly because the beam from such weapons, like the Advanced Tactical Laser, is invisible to the human eye. That means you could have three guys standing around, and one of them suddenly burst into flames.

“It is a lethal capability [insurgents] cannot readily counter and will not fully comprehend,” goes the military’s description, which seems optimistic given that descriptions of the device are already circulating publicly on sites like Danger Room. It seems we’re not close to actually having this capability, although an experimental laser cannon did hit 67 kilowatts in a test in February and the magic battlefield threshold of 100 kw was expected to be reached within 6-8 months after that, so who knows? If you start seeing an unusual uptick in reports out of Iraq of spontaneous human combustion, you’ll know.

Exit question: Isn’t this weapon likely to be … counterproductive in a counterinsurgency setting? Our success lately comes from building trust with the locals. Demonstrating a godlike power to light any one of them on fire from 50,000 feet before they knew what hit them would seem to, er, cut against that.


what about a "tactical mirror" for reflecting incoming deth ray? just a thought

Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:10:01 PM EDT
Group buy!
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:11:02 PM EDT
hell yeah
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:14:29 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:16:27 PM EDT
The non-VSTOL F-35s still have the power-takeoff shaft coming out of the engine, in anticipation of the power that would be required to power a tactical, fighter-borne laser.

Kharn
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:16:58 PM EDT
Can we expect a bunch of terrorists wearing those shiny space blankets as ponchos?
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:18:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AngryHat:
Can we expect a bunch of terrorists wearing those shiny space blankets as ponchos?


or just tin foil hats
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:24:13 PM EDT
"What do you do in the Marines?"

"I am an Airborne Death Ray Gunner."


Now that would be just about the coolest job ever.
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:27:10 PM EDT

Originally Posted By BURN:

Originally Posted By AngryHat:
Can we expect a bunch of terrorists wearing those shiny space blankets as ponchos?


or just tin foil hats


Dammit! you beat me to it!

Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:30:51 PM EDT

Exit question: Isn’t this weapon likely to be … counterproductive in a counterinsurgency setting? Our success lately comes from building trust with the locals. Demonstrating a godlike power to light any one of them on fire from 50,000 feet before they knew what hit them would seem to, er, cut against that.



Awww, come on! Imagine being in a firefight, your air controller tells you the DeathRay(TM) is in the area and on target. You shout into a loudspeaker, "SIM SALA BIM!" and the enemy command post goes **POOF**!

No greater thrill than that!
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:31:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Fletchette:

Originally Posted By BURN:

Originally Posted By AngryHat:
Can we expect a bunch of terrorists wearing those shiny space blankets as ponchos?


or just tin foil hats


Dammit! you beat me to it!



I guess those tin foil hats will come in handy after all.
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:31:41 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Fletchette:

Originally Posted By BURN:

Originally Posted By AngryHat:
Can we expect a bunch of terrorists wearing those shiny space blankets as ponchos?


or just tin foil hats


Dammit! you beat me to it!



I guess those tin foil hats will come in handy after all.
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:50:30 PM EDT
more:
link

A precision engagement of a PID insurgent by a DEW will be a highly surgical and impressively violent event. Target effects will include instantaneous burst-combustion of insurgent clothing, a rapid death through violent trauma, and more probably a morbid combination of both. It is estimated that the aftermath of a sub-second engagement by PASDEW will also be an observable event leaving an impression of of terrifyingly precise CF attribution in the minds of all witnesses. The PASDEW capability will give CF an asymmetric psychological edge over the insurgency. It is a lethal capability they cannot readily counter and will not fully comprehend, particularly as the DEW is invisible to the unaided eye and the aircraft can engage from significant stand off. For all witnesses, it will be perceived that overt insurgency participation in the MNF-W AOR is less attractive due to the terrifying potential consequences.
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 3:50:32 PM EDT
more:
link

A precision engagement of a PID insurgent by a DEW will be a highly surgical and impressively violent event. Target effects will include instantaneous burst-combustion of insurgent clothing, a rapid death through violent trauma, and more probably a morbid combination of both. It is estimated that the aftermath of a sub-second engagement by PASDEW will also be an observable event leaving an impression of of terrifyingly precise CF attribution in the minds of all witnesses. The PASDEW capability will give CF an asymmetric psychological edge over the insurgency. It is a lethal capability they cannot readily counter and will not fully comprehend, particularly as the DEW is invisible to the unaided eye and the aircraft can engage from significant stand off. For all witnesses, it will be perceived that overt insurgency participation in the MNF-W AOR is less attractive due to the terrifying potential consequences.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 3:29:29 AM EDT

Originally Posted By turbo_infidel:
more:
link

A precision engagement of a PID insurgent by a DEW will be a highly surgical and impressively violent event. [snip]
You gotta love the military's description of the event. Too bad we cant just say "We want to see people blow up like grapes in the microwave" in their requirements document.

Kharn
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 3:56:14 AM EDT
God, I love America.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 4:19:12 AM EDT

Originally Posted By turbo_infidel:

what about a "tactical mirror" for reflecting incoming deth ray? just a thought



"Hot mirrors", which reflect infrared, do not have perfect reflectance. Even if they had 99% reflectance (not cheap or easy to make), dumping 1kW of ir laser light into a mirror is going to ruin its day (and yours).
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 4:26:46 AM EDT
What is the USMC going to put this in? The USAF already is converting a AC-130 with a laser, but what do the Marines have to mount one in? They are still pretty big
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 4:28:38 AM EDT
If they are telling US about it, they have it perfected and the replacement on the way....
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 4:28:39 AM EDT
If they are telling US about it, they have it perfected and the replacement on the way....
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 4:39:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Kharn:

Originally Posted By turbo_infidel:
more:
link

A precision engagement of a PID insurgent by a DEW will be a highly surgical and impressively violent event. [snip]
You gotta love the military's description of the event. Too bad we cant just say "We want to see people blow up like grapes in the microwave" in their requirements document.

Kharn

I want sat based laser support in the 250-500kw range. Grapes in the microwave meah, lets vaporize them.

Secondly. I bet this system works great on suspected IED's.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 4:39:25 AM EDT
So what's up with all the double taps?


Pretty soon we'll see these on fighters in the A2A role as well as on the ground in the SA role. Soon after, we'll see them on the ground in the infantry support role, then as crew served weapons, and then as individual weapons.

Kinda cool, but kinda scary.

So will a dense smoke screen be at all effective as a counter? How about the high temp ceramic (space shuttle heat tiles etc) to protect vehicles?


-K
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 4:41:03 AM EDT
Death Ray............Muuuuuuuuuhahahaha
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:01:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SOC:

Originally Posted By Kharn:

Originally Posted By turbo_infidel:
more:
link

A precision engagement of a PID insurgent by a DEW will be a highly surgical and impressively violent event. [snip]
You gotta love the military's description of the event. Too bad we cant just say "We want to see people blow up like grapes in the microwave" in their requirements document.

Kharn

I want sat based laser support in the 250-500kw range. Grapes in the microwave meah, lets vaporize them.

Secondly. I bet this system works great on suspected IED's.


It being used for IEDs now. Google "Zeus"
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:05:33 AM EDT
The capability exists now, but you ain't gonna put it on any tactical aircraft. It requires a very large plane.

Then there are certain treaty issues and all that silly crap to worry about.

I guess we could downsize "da beamz", but it would still take something pretty big to hump around. Hmmm...maybe a C-17 would work!?
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:06:56 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Special-K:
So what's up with all the double taps?


Pretty soon we'll see these on fighters in the A2A role as well as on the ground in the SA role. Soon after, we'll see them on the ground in the infantry support role, then as crew served weapons, and then as individual weapons.

Kinda cool, but kinda scary.

So will a dense smoke screen be at all effective as a counter? How about the high temp ceramic (space shuttle heat tiles etc) to protect vehicles?


-K


Depending on the frequency of the laser smoke, rain and cloud can make a large difference in range. But unike low power lasers used for ranging and illumination it will not stop a heat capacity laser. It will burn through. But if the optics or IIR you using to aim it cant see through the obscurant its kind of a moot point.

Anything with a high melting point will make it harder to burn through, but at these power levels nothing will be perfect.

I doubt these lasers will do much harm to the hull or turret front of a M1 for example.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:07:44 AM EDT

Originally Posted By LWilde:
The capability exists now, but you ain't gonna put it on any tactical aircraft. It requires a very large plane.

Then there are certain treaty issues and all that silly crap to worry about.

I guess we could downsize "da beamz", but it would still take something pretty big to hump around. Hmmm...maybe a C-17 would work!?


C-130 works just fine.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:07:57 AM EDT

Originally Posted By turbo_infidel:
more:
link

A precision engagement of a PID insurgent by a DEW will be a highly surgical and impressively violent event. Target effects will include instantaneous burst-combustion of insurgent clothing, a rapid death through violent trauma, and more probably a morbid combination of both. It is estimated that the aftermath of a sub-second engagement by PASDEW will also be an observable event leaving an impression of of terrifyingly precise CF attribution in the minds of all witnesses. The PASDEW capability will give CF an asymmetric psychological edge over the insurgency. It is a lethal capability they cannot readily counter and will not fully comprehend, particularly as the DEW is invisible to the unaided eye and the aircraft can engage from significant stand off. For all witnesses, it will be perceived that overt insurgency participation in the MNF-W AOR is less attractive due to the terrifying potential consequences.


Oh...sorta like poppin a hadji in the gourd with a Barrett .50 cal sniper rifle?
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:08:02 AM EDT
The really cool thing is that the normal human reaction to incoming fire-to throw yourself prone on the ground-just makes you a bigger target.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:12:48 AM EDT


Awww, come on! Imagine being in a firefight, your air controller tells you the DeathRay(TM) is in the area and on target. You shout into a loudspeaker, "SIM SALA BIM!" and the enemy command post goes **POOF**!

No greater thrill than that!


Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:14:12 AM EDT
They are working on free electron lasers with superconducting beam recirculation.

Able to reach 80% or better "input-to-beam" efficiency in theory, currently getting around 35%. Also able to sweep frequencies from UV down to really, really deep IR.

Hellafun!
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:14:53 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/4/2007 5:16:39 AM EDT by ArmdLbrl]
Well in digging around I answered my own question.

Acording to this article: www.defense-update.com/products/a/atl.htm the existing device is not only small enough to fit in a C-130 but also a MV-22. The OP article must have been refrencing a decision by the Marines to buy in and give up cash and part of the Osprey production run to develop this.

One has to wonder if the USN will be happy about this though. They love the idea of lasers for replacing Phalanx. But the only lasers so far with enough power are chemical lasers and they all use hazardous chemicals that the USN adamantly refuses to carry on their ships. Will the USN allow LOX and pure iodine on their ships?
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:17:09 AM EDT

Originally Posted By webtaz99:
They are working on free electron lasers with superconducting beam recirculation.

Able to reach 80% or better "input-to-beam" efficiency in theory, currently getting around 35%. Also able to sweep frequencies from UV down to really, really deep IR.

Hellafun!


Solid state? Or chemical?
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:23:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:

Originally Posted By webtaz99:
They are working on free electron lasers with superconducting beam recirculation.

Able to reach 80% or better "input-to-beam" efficiency in theory, currently getting around 35%. Also able to sweep frequencies from UV down to really, really deep IR.

Hellafun!


Solid state? Or chemical?

Neither.
Free electron lasers use an electron beam which is "wiggled" by powerful magnetic fields.

Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:31:12 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/4/2007 5:36:11 AM EDT by Tim_the_enchanter]

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
What is the USMC going to put this in? The USAF already is converting a AC-130 with a laser, but what do the Marines have to mount one in? They are still pretty big


The Marine Corps has C130's. 4 full squadrons, VMGR 152, 252, 352 and 452. Totaling about 70 aircraft.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:32:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By webtaz99:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:

Originally Posted By webtaz99:
They are working on free electron lasers with superconducting beam recirculation.

Able to reach 80% or better "input-to-beam" efficiency in theory, currently getting around 35%. Also able to sweep frequencies from UV down to really, really deep IR.

Hellafun!


Solid state? Or chemical?

Neither.
Free electron lasers use an electron beam which is "wiggled" by powerful magnetic fields.



Ok, its not technically a solid state device, but like one it uses only electricity as power, no material "fuel".
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:48:31 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:

Originally Posted By webtaz99:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:

Originally Posted By webtaz99:
They are working on free electron lasers with superconducting beam recirculation.

Able to reach 80% or better "input-to-beam" efficiency in theory, currently getting around 35%. Also able to sweep frequencies from UV down to really, really deep IR.

Hellafun!


Solid state? Or chemical?

Neither.
Free electron lasers use an electron beam which is "wiggled" by powerful magnetic fields.




Ok, its not technically a solid state device, but like one it uses only electricity as power, no material "fuel".

That's why the Navy is drooling for them. All they need is electricity and cooling water. Plenty of both on a "nukleer wessull".
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:50:45 AM EDT

Originally Posted By webtaz99:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:

Originally Posted By webtaz99:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:

Originally Posted By webtaz99:
They are working on free electron lasers with superconducting beam recirculation.

Able to reach 80% or better "input-to-beam" efficiency in theory, currently getting around 35%. Also able to sweep frequencies from UV down to really, really deep IR.

Hellafun!


Solid state? Or chemical?

Neither.
Free electron lasers use an electron beam which is "wiggled" by powerful magnetic fields.




Ok, its not technically a solid state device, but like one it uses only electricity as power, no material "fuel".

That's why the Navy is drooling for them. All they need is electricity and cooling water. Plenty of both on a "nukleer wessull".


Yeah, even a submarine could use one. Tune it to blue-green it could even fire submerged. Could also be used as a navagation device, LADAR
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:56:13 AM EDT

Originally Posted By JellyBelly:
Group buy!


I'll take 2 cuz I know the wife is gonna want one!
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:02:20 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
What is the USMC going to put this in? The USAF already is converting a AC-130 with a laser, but what do the Marines have to mount one in? They are still pretty big


Probably make the boot private hump it around.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:04:32 AM EDT

Originally Posted By rasanders22:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
What is the USMC going to put this in? The USAF already is converting a AC-130 with a laser, but what do the Marines have to mount one in? They are still pretty big


Probably make the boot private hump it around.



One more time, the Marine Corps has 70 C130's in 4 squadrons.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:08:09 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Tim_the_enchanter:

Originally Posted By rasanders22:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
What is the USMC going to put this in? The USAF already is converting a AC-130 with a laser, but what do the Marines have to mount one in? They are still pretty big


Probably make the boot private hump it around.



One more time, the Marine Corps has 70 C130's in 4 squadrons.

Your sarcasm detector-fu is weak
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:08:41 AM EDT
Imagine the possibilities for air to air combat-you could have "Q-planes" that appear to be transport flights sucker enemy fighters, use AWACS data for targeting purposes, and let the games begin.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:10:58 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Tim_the_enchanter:

Originally Posted By rasanders22:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
What is the USMC going to put this in? The USAF already is converting a AC-130 with a laser, but what do the Marines have to mount one in? They are still pretty big


Probably make the boot private hump it around.



One more time, the Marine Corps has 70 C130's in 4 squadrons.


Uh, I already posted at the top of the page, that it is small enough to fit in the MV-22 if the Marines wanted to try it, and from the OP I guess that the Marines have decided to try it.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:12:19 AM EDT
It's an awesome thought...to make insurgents explode without having to strap bombs to them first.

Like eggs in a microwave.


As a matter of interest...did you know that the lasers used in a high speed DVD burner can put out over 200 mW of power and can be used to burn things? And the lasers from the new Blu-Ray and HD-DVD burners are a beautiful blue-violet in color and are in that same power range. They can burn you...or somebody else.

I will eventually start playing with those laser diodes, but tuned down to low, safe levels.

CJ


Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:17:20 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:

Originally Posted By Tim_the_enchanter:

Originally Posted By rasanders22:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
What is the USMC going to put this in? The USAF already is converting a AC-130 with a laser, but what do the Marines have to mount one in? They are still pretty big


Probably make the boot private hump it around.



One more time, the Marine Corps has 70 C130's in 4 squadrons.


Uh, I already posted at the top of the page, that it is small enough to fit in the MV-22 if the Marines wanted to try it, and from the OP I guess that the Marines have decided to try it.


Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:19:36 AM EDT
Smoke/dust = laser light show while everyone dances.

I wonder what would happen if you had a mirror...
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:24:41 AM EDT
Someone please give a condensed and simplified explanation of how these things work. They odviously involve some spectrum of light energy, but do they also involve particle beams of some kind? Due to ,I'm guessing, a trajectory w/ little or no drop, would lasers be usefull for long range naval use[think over the horizon].
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:28:18 AM EDT
I suppose we will have to change Orwell's quote to read:

"'Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to use an airborne death ray on their behalf.'
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:29:47 AM EDT
height=8
Originally Posted By Kharn:
height=8
Originally Posted By turbo_infidel:
more:
link

A precision engagement of a PID insurgent by a DEW will be a highly surgical and impressively violent event. [snip]
You gotta love the military's description of the event. Too bad we cant just say "We want to see people blow up like grapes in the microwave" in their requirements document.

Kharn


Bet the first request said exactly that! Of course the first request was from a Lance Cpl...Ed
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 6:31:53 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Subconscious:
Smoke/dust = laser light show while everyone dances.

I wonder what would happen if you had a mirror...


Uh, you have never seen a real laser work I guess. One that actually has the power to burn something.

And only lasers working in visible light spectrum can be seen, and they can only be seen from the side if there is smoke or dust floating around to reflect a portion to the side. Most of these lasers are IR because certain IR wavelenghts pass through air better than optical light.
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