The Army may be getting frickin’ Humvees with frickin’ laser beams attached to their frickin’ beds:
Boeing’s Direct Energy Systems project recently concluded a test in the New Mexico desert where the Humvee-mounted Laser Avenger system successfully shot down three unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in a demonstration for U.S. Army officers.
The Laser Avenger was initially created to dispose of unexploded ordnance (bombs that didn’t detonate) lying on the ground, but given the proliferation of UAVs for both surveillance and weapons deployment, Boeing adapted the lasers to shoot the UAVs out of the sky. The benefit over shooting down the drones with guns or missiles in startling contradiction to the red lines depicted in the old G.I. Joe cartoons is that the enemy can’t see where the laser beam is coming from, thereby keeping the ground troops’ position secure. Pretty awesome, unless you’re a UAV. Fortunately UAVs are unmanned by definition, so what we’re looking at here is lasers shooting down flying robots.
Still pretty awesome, if you ask me.
(Title swiped from the late Harry Nilsson.)