From the week gone by on the directed-energy weapons front: defense contractor Northrop Grumman reported that it got a solid-state laser to fire a beam with a potency of 105.5 kilowatts.You know how some people say that the atomic bomb was a really bad idea that seemed like a good idea at the time?
For the ray-gun wing of the military-industrial complex, the 100-kilowatt threshold is a major milestone, marking the entry point to weapons-grade laser weapons.
Earlier this year, Boeing said that it had used a "kilowatt-class" solid-state laser to shoot down a UAV from a ground-based system. The company hopes that the Airborne Laser, meanwhile, will do its first-ever aerial target shoot sometime in 2009.
This is like that.