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Laser Will Shoot Mortar Shells Out Of The Sky

Posted on Sat, 20 Mar 2010 03:25:29 GMT
LaserStar Trek may have used lasers set to stun, but in a few years lasers set to kill will be available. At least that's the plan at the U.S. Defense Department's High-Energy Laser Systems Test Facility at the White Sands Missile range in New Mexico.

According to a recent story by Aviation week & Space Technology (March 8, 2010, pg. 53), the Northrop-Grumman solid-state laser will eventually be able to shoot down mortar shells in flight. Counter rocket, artillery and mortar (C-RAM) will be the primary mission of high-power lasers once they become operational.

Laser device
Laser device

This announcement follows on the heels of the February 10th shoot-down of a ballistic missile in flight by a chemical laser on board a heavily modified USAF/Boeing 747. While chemical lasers generate enough beam power to destroy a spacecraft hundreds, even, thousands of kilometers away, they can only fire a limited number of shots and the fuel is toxic. Solid state lasers, on the other hand, will be able to fire as long as power is available, and can be packaged small enough to dinned there way into future bombes and even fighters.

Military aircraft

Notice: These images are the work of a U.S. military or Department of Defense employee, taken or made during the course of an employee's official duties. As a work of the U.S. federal government, the images ares in the public domain.

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Ian Stephens

About Ian Stephens

Ian Stephens is a flight simulation enthusiast also with a keen interest in aviation and technology.  Ian spends a lot of his time experimenting with various simulator packages but has a love for Microsoft Flight Simulator X because of the huge selection of add-ons available.  However, Ian also has copies of Prepar3D and X-Plane installed. 

Ian has been writing for Fly Away Simulation for over 9 years.  Should you wish, you can contact Ian via email at


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