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EXCLUSIVE: Directed Energy Weapons, An ATS Analysis & Discussion

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posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 10:48 AM
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We hear about Lasers, particle beams and microwave weapons and how they are changing our future warfare, but there are few if any comprehensive sources of information that can tell those interested in such things what is actually going on in the world or Directed Energy Weapons (DEW's) today. To that end, the following is a list of currently active DEW programs along with a few details concerning each.
 



Preface:
When I wrote the post entitled Lockheed-Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) I received several requests to provide more information on DEW's, specifically the solid state laser being developed for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
In response to these requests I submit the following for your reading and subsequent discourse.
Please note that some of the information and images you'll see in this thread are already posted elsewhere on ATS, but in an effort to compile and homogenize all available information on this subject some repetition is inevitable.
Intelgurl



Directed Energy Weapons, An ATS Analysis & Discussion:
Directed Energy Weapons or DEW's have been the fantasy of Hollywood sci-fi movies, the dream of military planners and now reality in labs and test sites from MIT to White Sands and Livermore.
The way war is waged is soon to encounter a paradigm shift brought on by the ability to attack a target at light speed or near light speed - the advantage of which is that a soldier can establish a visual identification and kill with no time lag from ID to shoot nor from the trigger pull to the destruction of the target.

There are 3 general classes of DEWs: LASER, Radio Frequency or RF and Energy Particle Beams, it is not my point to hit on every minute detail of the listed military programs or their associated science, but rather to give a brief description of each system so as to help facilitate further discussion by ATS members.

Laser: Acronym for Light Amplification (by) Stimulated Emission (of) Radiation. A device that produces a coherent beam of optical radiation. The general types of lasers are chemical and solid state, which can be either pulsed or continuous.
Lasers are the first known DEW's to become operational on the US's tactical attack platforms. Significant progress has already been made in Boeing's Airborne Laser (ABL) program, underway since 1992 as well as Northrop Grumman/TRW's Tactical High Energy Laser (THEL). These programs promise to give the US military a credible "boost~phase" defense against theater ballistic missiles.


Radio Frequency: Includes High Power Microwave (HPM), Electromagnetic (EM) Radiation,and Radio Frequency (RF). This class of weapon can unleash in a flash as much electrical power... (2 billion watts or more)... as the Hoover Dam generates in 24 hours. This energy pulse moving at the speed of light and impervious to bad weather, can destroy any electronics within it's range. It does this by short-circuiting internal electrical connections, wrecking memory chips, ruining computer motherboards and generally frying all electronic components not built to withstand such powerful surges.

Energy Particle Beam: There are two broad types of particle-beam weapons: the charged-particle beam weapon and the neutral-particle beam weapon. These weapons theoretically can range from being able to fry electronics to literally disintegrating it's target.






Laser Weapons / Sub-Category: Chemical Lasers

A chemical laser gets it's energy from a series of chemical reactions by mixing gases to obtain excited atoms. Weapons grade chemical lasers are frequently Chemical Oxygen Iodine Laser, also known as COILs, another chemical laser used in high power laser weapons is the deuterium fluoride laser. An example of a COIL is the AirBorne Laser, an example of a deuterium fluoride laser is the THEL.

Current technology allows for greater power to be exerted using a chemical laser than a solid state laser, however the drawback is that chemical lasers are usually quite large and are in their infancy stage as far as making them mobile due to their size and weight.

Because of the size and weight issues, expect solid state lasers to take over nearly all weapons type functions when the technology improves to the point where they are able to acheive similar power to the large chemical lasers of today.




ABL - Airborne Laser:

Boeing is developing a weapon system that uses a COIL type laser onboard a 747-400F to shoot down Scud-type missiles in their boost phase. Called the Airborne Laser (ABL), the weapon system detects and tracks a missile seconds after launch, and then points and fires a laser with enough energy to destroy the missile -- leaving potentially lethal chemical, biological and nuclear warhead debris on or near the territory where they were launched.

For those who think that Lasers are rendered useless is air turbulence, moisture and dust, think again.
While it is true, heavy cloud cover or a great volume of dust does impede the performance of these lasers, one technology provider to the ABL has a "fix" for smaller atmospheric disturbances and anomalies.
On February 26, 2003 the diode-pumped solid-state laser used for targeting the ABL (called the BILL for Beacon Illuminator Laser) was delivered to the Missile Defense Agency?s Airborne Laser (ABL) program.
The BILL?s laser beam illuminates a small spot on the target missile and measures the distortion of reflected light caused by turbulence in the air. This information enables a deformable mirror to make compensating corrections to ABL?s megawatt-class chemical laser beam.

Current Stage of Development:
The ABL program is in the program definition and risk reduction (PDRR) acquisition phase and is scheduled for full operational capability in 2009, with a total of seven ABLs.
Currently, ABL is scheduled to shoot down a Scud-like ballistic missile over the Pacific Ocean in December 2004. Theoretically, ABL could be put into emergency use, called Emergency Operational Capability, any time after that.

MORE INFO:
"The AirBorn Laser", Airborne Laser.Com, A site sponsored by: Missile Defense Agency, USAF, Boeing Corp., Lockheed & Northrop Grumman

ATS Related Threads:
"Airborne Laser", Posted by: KANO
"Particle Beams!!!", Posted by: AlnilamOmega
"AIAA Review of Aerospace Advances in 2003 - Part I", Posted by: Valhall ... (Highly Recommended!)




ATL - Advanced Tactical Laser:

The development by Boeing's Rocketdyne division of a small chemical laser falls under a program called the Advanced Tactical Laser, (sometimes incorrectly referred to as the "Airborne Tactical Laser")
The ATL uses a chemical oxygen iodine laser (COIL) that generates up to 70 kilowatts of power and can melt through steel at 1 mm per second which means the beam is not practical to cut through armor but could be used on unarmored vehicles, communications antennas, aircraft, low-flying, terrain-following cruise missiles and of course... ummm... shall we say "softer targets".
The Army, Navy & USMC are all interested in the ATL, as it can be mountable on fixed and rotary-wing aircraft like the MV-22 Osprey and larger helo's such as Chinooks. The ATL has a range of approximately 15 kilometers and could see deployment as early as FY2005.

MORE INFO:
"Advanced Tactical Laser (ATL)", Global Security.Org




MTHEL - Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser:

In April 1996, Israel s Prime Minister, Shimon Peres, met with President Bill Clinton and Secretary of Defense William Perry. As a result of these meetings, the United States made a commitment to assist Israel in the development of a THEL demonstrator to help Israel defend its northern cities from the threat posed by Katyusha and other short-range rockets.
One advantage of killing enemy missiles with a laser is the relatively low cost compared to kinetic-energy missiles. The Patriot?s newest missile, the PAC-3, currently costs $3.8 million a piece. A THEL shot is estimated to cost about $8,000.
The THEL's historic June 6, 2000 Katyusha shootdown at the HELSTF (High Enegy Laser System Test Facility) was completed in just nine months, less than four years from program start. Testing culminated in a remarkable Surprise Attack test, engaging an operational threat with unknown launch points and launch time. This test and the subsequent unprecedented 25 shootdowns have been highly praised by defense officials in both countries.
The deuterium fluoride THEL (not a COIL as is frequently mistakenly reported) is currently being used as a test bed for the follow-on program to develop a mobile variant called MTHEL.

Follow-on Development:
The next step for MTHEL will be a mobile platform-mounted high energy laser weapon designed to meet common U.S. and Israeli operational requirements, providing an initial operational capability to address U.S. Army transformation objectives and to help with Israeli border security by providing a defense against short range missiles, rockets and other air defense threats.

Historical Note: The MIRACL
A precursor to the MTHEL and an offshoot of Reagan's "Star Wars" technology is the Mid-Infrared Advanced Chemical Laser or MIRACL. It was designed and built in the late 1980's to demonstrate laser technology that could evolve towards anti-missile weapons.
The MIRACL was a huge ground-based system that required massive jet engine-sized turbines to create enough power to drive the laser light.
In a test conducted at White Sands Missile Range, N.M., the MIRACL was the first laser in the history of military weaponry that struck a satellite in orbital flight around the earth. The laser was fired at the Air Force MSTI-3 research satellite as it passed over White Sands, two bursts from the chemical laser struck a sensor array on the MSTI-3 craft. One burst was an initial one second firing to calibrate the laser's location on the satellite's body. The second beam was a 10 second burst, which triggered the sensors and relayed data back to the ground tracking and monitoring stations that MIRCL had successfully tracked and hit the target with a potentially destructive force.

MORE INFO: "Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser", Northrop-Grumman Press Release

ATS Related Threads:
"United States confirms new laser selection", Posted by: Jetsetter
"Ground Based Lasers To Protect Airliners", Posted by: Phoenix




SBL - Space Based Laser:

Designed to compliment the mission of the Airborne Laser, the Space-Based Laser will provide the first wave of defense against ballistic missiles launched from anywhere in the world. The program is sponsored by the Ballistic Defense Organization.
Northrop Grumman/TRW leads one of two current SBL concept definition efforts, with Boeing & Lockheed Martin serving as a team members and major subcontractors.


Project Progress:
The SBL program is currently focusing mainly on the development and demonstration of components and subsystem technologies which would be required for a fully operational Space Based Laser system.
DOD estimates that it will cost about $3 billion to develop and deploy the Integrated Flight Experiment vehicle, originally scheduled to have an experimental version of the laser in orbit by 2012, the Pentagon now believes it could establish some operational capability by 2008 at the earliest and add further developments later, this according to insiders in the U.S. Air Force.
As of May 17, 2003 the Missile Defense Agency decided to classify information on tests and countermeasures used in the program, those close to the work are saying significant progress is taking place.

MORE INFO:
"Pentagon Wants Space-Based Laser Operational by 2008", Global News Wire, May 10, 2003
"DoD Ballistic Missile Defense Fact Sheet: Space Based Laser", Missile Defense Agency, External Affairs - DoD, Washington DC, January 2002




Laser Weapons / Sub-Category: Solid State Lasers

Solid-state lasers are considered the "Holy Grail" to US military planners due to size reduction possibilities and the ability to run off of a Humvee's engine or an F-35's lift fan drive-shaft instead of running off of expensive, payload hogging, space consuming chemicals.

The State of Solid State:
Raytheon is making major strides in the development of 2nd gen tactical laser weapons, specifically the goal is for a 100kw solid state version.

A 100kw solid state laser is certainly possible, but the high-brightness diodes used to make weapons grade lasers cost about $100 per watt which sounds easy enough. However, the hurdle that Raytheon R&D needs to jump is in the cooling of the weapons grade laser diodes.

Current cooling technology can only accomodate 10% efficiency on these diodes which means that instead of $100,000 worth of diodes that are 100% efficient, it requires $1 million worth of diodes that are 10% efficient - this makes for a prohibitive cost and size per individual unit, especially since there is only $49 million allocated for the development. It is expected that the Raytheon 100kw laser will be ready for demos as early as FY2007.

In the process of developing the 100kw laser, 15kw & 25kw solid state lasers have been developed and the 15 kw lasers are already deployed for various military uses. It is rumored that TRW's 25kw version will be mounted to the X-45 UCAV and used to "disable" cruise missiles and ground targets.

Raytheon's 25kw version, which is reported to have far better beam quality than TRW's, is rumored to be in development in a pod that can be fitted to fighter/attack aircraft. The beam from both versions can burn a hole through metal from a distance in excess of 3 km.

In a recent demonstration at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, a test-fired Raytheon solid state laser emitted 400 pulses of light in two seconds, drilling a smoldering hole through an inch of steel.

As these solid state laser systems become fully developed, they could strike and destroy a target, then be retargeted instantly, shooting down targets like mortars and artillery shells, explode ordnance in enemy depots, take out ballistic missiles 500 miles away and defend aircraft from air to air and ground to air missiles.



F-35 & AC-130 Solid State Laser:

The 100-kilowatt infrared laser, which is being developed for the Lockheed-Martin F35 Joint Strike Fighter by contending companies TRW (Northrop-Grumman) and Raytheon, is far more powerful than any laser ever used in war.
The solid state laser is designed to attack targets such as incoming air to air and ground to air missiles, other fighter aircraft, ground vehicles and anti-aircraft batteries.
Lockheed, estimates the laser weapon will be ready to test by around 2008 and could go into service by 2010-2015, (other industry estimates have a more aggressive timetable).

The Zeus Laser:

Zeus originally started out as a humvee mounted chemical laser very similar to the ATL except that it is ground based and smaller. The Zeus-HLONS has transitioned to a soild state laser With an effective stand-off range of 300 meters. It's primary function is to take out unexploded ordinance such as landmines, etc., by painting the ordinance with intensely hot laser light and detonating it in just seconds. This weapon is currently operational although there has not been much press about it to date but sources say that it was used in the 2003 Iraqi War.

The Joint High-Power Solid-State Laser program:

The Joint High-Power Solid-State Laser program is to demonstrate by the end of 2004, then most likely go into deployment. It is a 25 kw solid state laser, that can be mounted on ground vehicles as well as aircraft. The Joint High-Power Solid-State Laser could be used to destroy short-range attacking missiles or blind an enemy?s optical sensors.



MORE INFO:
"HMMWV Laser Ordinance Neutralization System", Space & Defense Technical Center, US Army
"JSF (F-35) JOINT STRIKE FIGHTER, USA", Naval Technology.Com


ATS Related Threads:
"America soon to get jet/humvee mounted lasers?", Posted by: Kobyoshimaru








Radio Frequency (RF) Weapons:

From the military's perspective, Radio Frequency weapons, have many things going for them: their blast travels at the speed of light, they can be fired without any visible emanation, and they are mostly unaffected by gravity or atmospheric conditions.

Kirtland Air Force Base, in Albuquerque, N.M., is the epicenter of both the Pentagon & the UK's research on pulsed-power electromagnetic weapons. It is also worth mentioning that it's at Kirtland AFB that the premier pulsed-power system, "Shiva Star" is housed behind meter-thick walls.

It is known that Air Force spokespersons are instructed to refuse comments on what goes on in the pulsed-power programs at Kirtland, but a fact sheet on the Web site of Kirtland's Directed Energy Directorate describes the Shiva Star as capable of producing "120 thousand volts and 10 million amps for down to one millionth of a second to generate a power flow equivalent to a terawatt."

Because of the secrecy surrounding the US military's HPM programs building a list of confirmed programs has been a daunting task.

Industry executives have been a bit more forthcoming with news of these new weapons.
In December 2002, Michael Booen, vice president of Directed Energy Weapons at Raytheon Co., told OpticsReport, a journal aimed at investors, that some of its high-powered microwave systems were "on the verge of use today" and indicated at that time (2002) that deployment was imminent.



Shiva Star

Shiva star was originally a Particle Beam program under Ronald Reagan's "Star Wars" initiative, more about that in the Particle Beam section. Currently Shiva Star is one of the most powerful EMP devices in the world.



Sinus 6: Shiva Star Junior

The Sinus-6 can fire a several-gigawatt pulsed beam 200 times a second in 10-nanosecond bursts. The pulsed bursts are needed to attain high peak power, generating a powerful electron beam.



The E-Bomb

The E-Bomb works by being fired from a long-range 155mm artillery gun, an MLRS rocket launcher, a GPS guided bomb or a cruise missile, reaching it's target area, then breaking open its outer casing over the target. The munition then unfolds its radio transmitter aerials and the transmitter sends a high-powered radio pulse of billions of watts that lasts just a few nanoseconds, frying any unshielded electronic device in a large area.



Naval Defense: Project Name Unknown

HPM System for Ship-self-defense and counter in-coming munitions on Naval vessels.



Enemy Air Command & Operations Degradation: Project Name Unknown

HPM Command Control Warfare/Information Warfare (C2W/IW); Destroying an enemies electronic infrastructure.



Aircraft Self Protection (ASP) Project

Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses (SEAD), counters Surface-to-Air & Air-to-Air Missiles, and other enemy air defense assets.
Jane's Defense Weekly reported in August 2002 that George Muellner, president for the Boeing Phantom Works, admitted that concepts for a DE weapon - "probably a high-powered microwave" - were being developed for an upgrade to the X-45 unmanned combat air vehicle.

It is very likely that there are 1st generation versions of this weapon being deployed at this time.



Active Denial Technology: Non Lethal Pain/Discomfort Weapon

Basically, if you could point the output of a microwave oven at an enemy, you could with minimal power make him nauseated and give him severe headaches, as you turn up the power a little the results change to confussion and a general inability to think logically. As the power continues to be turned up the enemy will feel hot as the microwaves start affecting the water in the body. Although considered a non-lethal weapon due to it's ability to inflict pain and disorientation, the final or highest level of this weapon would actually incinerate the enemy. This could be a narrowly focused beam or it could be a broad beam that could affect a whole group of enemy combatants.

The way it works:
When it penetrates in, it activates the pain sensors, and you feel a lot of pain, Garcia said. But there?s no damage to body tissue in this mode although admittedly the weapon could be lethal depending on power output, making it nothing shy of 21 century electric napalm.

The program, according to military insiders, could be used for riot control and peacekeeping missions when deadly force is not necessary.

The device works by firing micro-millimeter waves that penetrate just beneath a person?s skin, heating it by a few dozen degrees and causing severe pain. Describing the panic-causing intensity of the pain inflicted by the high-powered microwaves, an un-named military officer who has experienced it had this to say: "All the glossy slide presentations cannot prepare you for what to expect when you step in the beam."

This weapon is already operational and in the field.



High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program, (HAARP)


Officially, HAARP is a scientific endeavor aimed at studying the properties and behavior of the ionosphere, with particular emphasis on being able to understand and use it to enhance communications and surveillance systems for both civilian and defense purposes.

The HAARP program claims to be a world class ionospheric research facility for an Ionospheric Research Instrument (IRI), a high power transmitter facility operating in the HF frequency range. The IRI is used to temporarily excite a limited area of the ionosphere for scientific study.

A widely diverse group of individuals all seem to have problems with the official stated purpose of HAARP, ranging from local residents worried about their health to activists who charge that the military is planning to use HAARP for a variety of top-secret, sinister purposes.

A few of years ago, anti-HAARP activist Nick Begich, son of a former Alaska congressman, published "Angels Don't Play This HAARP", in which he argues that the military plans to use HAARP to manipulate weather patterns and jam the thoughts of millions of people worldwide.

Most people in the know on defense oriented research technology such as this snicker openly at such claims, but when the subject of Telsa type weaponry comes up the same defense knowledgeable become tight lipped, and uncooperative in further discussions.

What is it about HAARP that makes the Russian Duma (senate) sign a petition against the US's HAARP project and send it to Vladimir Putin and the Secretary general of the UN? The signatures are not those of men and women who are ignorant of defense related issues either, but rather members of the International Affairs and Defence Committees, members of the Russian Duma who would be knowledgeable of Russia's own Tesla type weapons experiments.

Whether something is amiss, innocent or somewhere in between, it certainly bears mentioning here in this thread... Do some research and make up your own mind.



LRAD: Sonic Crowd Control

The Long Range Acoustic Device, or LRAD, is a so-called "non-lethal weapon" which measures 33 inches in diameter, can direct a high-pitched, piercing tone with a tight beam. Neither the LRAD's operators or others in the immediate area are affected. Permanent hearing damage is possible if someone were exposed to the sound for lengthy periods.
This system is presently deployed to troops dealing with crowd control in Iraq as well as Navy ships in foreign ports not wanting a recurrance of the US Cole incident.


MORE INFO:
"HAARP Official HomePage", University of Alaska
"US HAARP Weapon Development Concerns Russian Duma", Interfax News Agency, August 10, 2002, Centre for Research on Globalisation


ATS Related Threads:
"HAARP - A structured analysis", Posted by: Nerdling
"Troops get high-tech noisemaker", Posted by: MarkLuitzen








Particle Beam Weapons:

In 1958, two years before the first scientific laser demonstration in 1960 a project code-named Seesaw was designed to study the possible use of particle beams for ballistic missile defense.

Particle beams are an outgrowth of conventional atomic accelerator technology. Weapons-class particle beams require millions of volts of electrical potential, powerful magnetic fields for beam direction, and long accelerating tunnels.

Like lasers, Neutral Particle Beams (NPB) are essentially light-speed weapons. More difficult to control and point than a laser weapon, the NPB is strictly a line-of-sight device (cannot be redirected).

There is known particle beam research work ongoing at Sandia National Laboratories, Los Alamos National Laboratories, Kirtland AFB & the White Sands Test Range.

According to Nick Cook Advanced Technologies Editor for Jane's Defense Weekly, in the early 1990s the US Air Force was preparing tests at Kirtland Air Force Base on a ground-based plasma-weapon capable of firing plasma bullets at incoming ballistic missile warheads. The enabling technology was a 'fast capacitor bank' called Shiva Star that could store 10 million joules of energy and release it instantaneously. Officials anticipated firing bullets at 3,000km/sec in 1995 and 10,000km/sec - 3% of the speed of light - by the year 2000. The tests absorbed little more than a few million dollars of annual funding (Jane's Defence Weekly 29 July 1998).

Nick Cook believes that the program's R&D was above-board and openly discussed, but when actual tests were started the results so impressed DoD officials that Shiva Star was "cancelled" in the public eye but in actuality moved to a deep black classifed plasma weapons project.

Today the original Shiva Star device is used in HPM, EMP testing at the USAF Research Facility at Kirtland AFB... But it is believed that the plasma weapon Shiva Star started out to be is actually undergoing tests at White Sands, which lends credence to the numerous reports of blue and white flashes in the skies over White Sands.

The Current State of Particle Beam Technology

The current state of this technology as related to weapons is unknown. Undoubtedly research and testing continues in this field, but it is impossible to know how far the US is from fielding such a weapon.

George Muellner, vice president of Boeing's Phantom Works acknowledge to Jane's Defense Weekly that his company is actively researching plasma based DEW's equipping a future breed of hypersonic aircraft platforms, such as those favoured for research and development by the Bush administration.

Muellner said that the use of naturally forming plasmas on a high-Mach aerospace vehicle could, in the long term, be applied "as a huge energy resource" to a directed-energy weapon for self-defence purposes by "skimming off" some of the plasma that forms naturally around a M8.0 aerospace vehicle.

Muellner said that there are two possible engineering approaches. One is to divert the plasma into a chamber, excite it, introduce a laser-critical gas such as argon and direct the resultant energy through high-power optics as a laser beam. The other is to wrap small compact rings or 'toroids' of plasma energy in intense magnetic fields and fire them from a weapon as 'bullets' at air or ground targets.


MORE INFO:
Federation of American Scientist - "Neutral Particle Beams"


ATS Related Threads:
"Particle Beams!!!", Posted by: AlnilamOmega





Laser Sources:

"Laser Hits Orbiting Satellite in Beam Test", SpaceCast News Service, Washington DC - October 20, 1997, Frank Sietzen

"Weapons and Tactics of the Soviet Army", Published by Jane's Information Group, David Isby

"The Airborne Laser: FAQ", USAF Airborne Laser System Program Office, Office of Public Affairs, Kirtland AFB, NM

"The Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser", US Army Space and Missile Defense Command, Arlington, Va

"The Boeing Role in Missile Defense: Space Based Laser (SBL)", Boeing News Release, Boeing Laser & Electro Optical Systems, Canoga Park, CA

"Directed-Energy Weapons Promise ?Low Cost Per Kill?", National Defense Magazine, September 2001, Author: Sandra I. Erwin

"Laser Weapons In U.S. Sights", CBS News, October 2003

"Fighter plane's laser", New Scientist.Com, July 24, 2002

"Ballistic Missile Defense: Issues and Prospects," Proceedings of a symposium held at the Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University, June 30, 1980, Steven E. Miller

"GAO DEFENSE ACQUISITIONS: A Report to Congress on DOD Development of Laser Weapons", US Government Accounting Office, Washington DC, March 31, 1999

"Raytheon & TRW Win Laser Contracts", Washington Technology News, Washington DC, December 2002



RF Weapon Sources:

"US DoD push for laser, microwave weapons", Jane's Defense Weekly, August 9, 2002, By Andrew Koch, JDW Bureau Chief, Washington DC, and Nick Cook, JDW Aerospace Consultant, London

"US Wonder Weapons, The Pentagon's quest for nonlethal arms", U.S. News, July 7, 1997, Douglas Pasternak

"The Dawn of the E-Bomb", High-Power Microwave Sources and Technologies, "The Spectrum", October 2003

"High Power RF Weapons Technology", National Security Agency, (NSA)

"Weapons of Total Destruction: HAARP", Viewzone.Com

"Ionosphere Research Lab Sparks Fears in Alaska", Lisa Busch, science writer, Sitka, Alaska

"HAARP: Electromagnetic War On Horizon?",The Coastal Post - May, 1996, Stephen Simac

"Super-secret microwave weapons may be used in Iraq", Seattle Post-Intelligencer, August 15, 2002




Particle Beam Sources:

"Introducing the Particle Beam", Research paper for the USAF Weapons Laboratory, Kirtland AFB, NM, Col. Richard M. Roberds (Ret)

"Neutral Particle Beams", Federation of American Scientists

"USAF Directed Energy Technology Plan 1998", USAF Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson AFB

"1994 Physic Division Progress Report", Los Alamos National Laboratories, University of California & US Department of Energy

"Pulsed Power Capabilities: High Energy Density Physics", Plasma Weapons Technology Studies, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM

"Boeing considers feasibility of plasma-based weapons", Jane's Defense Weekly, (subscription service) March 28, 2001, Nick Cook, London UK





[Edited on 10-3-2004 by SkepticOverlord]




posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 11:05 AM
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Excellent, excellent post Intel. Just a few questions:

1. How do you believe the armed forces will cope with the heat issue aroudn the better part of these weapons, lasers in particular?

2. What about UHF/microwave weapons? I heard them discussed, and they appear to be very, very ugly weapons. Are there not international laws to prohibit some of these devices?

3. What about the possibility of orbital bombardment?

DE



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 11:26 AM
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Excellent post Intel Girl


I just read it all.

That is brilliant. I love these new weapons coming out.

I wonder though. Is the US going to get so far ahead in military technology that it is inferior to the rest of the planet?

They do spend alot of money on thier military though. But that is awesome stuff


With the 10,000 Km/s, does the actual "bullet" survive up to the distance?

And i'm still a bit lost. Do those Particle Accelerator Beams fire Plasma bullets? Or actually just speed up a bullet to those speeds?

[Edited on 8-3-2004 by DaRAGE]

[Edited on 8-3-2004 by DaRAGE]



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 11:37 AM
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Great post, lotta hard work and time.
You may or may not have this link on the HPM bomb that works differently than the E-bomb you described - no antenna's just internal FCG's - if you don't have this its a good read;
HPM Bomb / E-Bomb



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 11:51 AM
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Originally posted by DeusEx
Excellent, excellent post Intel. Just a few questions:

1. How do you believe the armed forces will cope with the heat issue aroudn the better part of these weapons, lasers in particular?

2. What about UHF/microwave weapons? I heard them discussed, and they appear to be very, very ugly weapons. Are there not international laws to prohibit some of these devices?

3. What about the possibility of orbital bombardment?

DE


1. Heat buildup's not really a problem, unless you're wanting to stay stealthy. However, you're going to have heat buildup from any kind of conventional weapon you fire, be it cannons or missiles. And on this issue, there is the irksome problem of counterfire batteries. With a laser, no matter how well you hide it, there's always going to be way to backtrack it. Technology is already being developed from air turbulence monitoring technology to detect and backtrack the disturbance made by a sniper bullet. This tech is in its infancy. I saw this in last month's Scientific American.

Scientific American Article

2. No, not as far I personally am aware. Anyway, there are ways around such rules - see the use of phosphorous grenades, explosive bullets, flamethrowers etc. For example, you can use flamethrowers for defoliation and the destruction of materiel. ("Look! There's a bush. Oops, somebody was behind it. Oh dear.") Also, the U.S. and probably other NATO countries are likely to be sitting on stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons. The relevant international laws for most conventional weapons are under the Geneva Convention, which is casually being flouted with Camp X-Ray and so on.

You'll find the good stuff here:
Major International Instruments
on Disarmament and Related Issues


3. Area bombardment is somewhat frowned upon by the "Outer Space Treaty," Article V. It was adopted in 1966, in UN resolution 2222 (XXI). Here it is for you:


States Parties to the Treaty undertake not to place in orbit around the earth any objects carrying nuclear weapons or any other kinds of weapons of mass destruction, instal such weapons on celestial bodies, or station such weapons in outer space in any other manner.

The moon and other celestial bodies shall be used by all States Parties to the Treaty exclusively for peaceful purposes. The establishment of military bases, installations and fortifications, the testing of any type of weapons and the conduct of military manoeuvres on celestial bodies shall be forbidden. The use of military personnel for scientific research or for any other peaceful purposes shall not be prohibited. The use of any equipment or facility necessary for peaceful exploration of the moon and other celestial bodies shall also not be prohibited.


source: Outer Space Treaty

Note that it does not explicitly forbid orbital pinpoint weapons as an orbital DEW would be... just military emplacements or weapons on the moon, asteroids or planets. The Soviets orbited an armed space station in the 1970s, armed with a 30mm aircraft gun, and they did consider nuclear orbital bombardment. The US also had plans for a Lenticular Re-Entry vehicle, that would have bombarded cities from orbit - blatantly in violation of this treaty. But, we all know about superpowers and treaties anyway. More recently, in 2001, a Bill was to be passed forbidding the use of all sorts of nasty orbital weapons, including psychotronic, sonic, ultra-sonic, plasma and all other sorts of weapons systems.

Read it and weep.

Space Preservation Act of 2001

Anyway, at current levels of technology, firing down through 100km of atmosphere is a bit of a pain, as you get lots of dust, diffraction, cloud cover, plus the satellite only passes over a certain area at certain times, which are predictable... basically the same problems as spy sats vs. recon planes.

[Edited on 8-3-2004 by Lampyridae]



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 11:56 AM
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Originally posted by DeusEx
Excellent, excellent post Intel. Just a few questions:

1. How do you believe the armed forces will cope with the heat issue aroudn the better part of these weapons, lasers in particular?

2. What about UHF/microwave weapons? I heard them discussed, and they appear to be very, very ugly weapons. Are there not international laws to prohibit some of these devices?

3. What about the possibility of orbital bombardment?

DE

Regarding your first question concerning cooling on the lasers, it is my understanding from the people I've spoken to at Raytheon that initially they are looking into both short bursts and then a resting time and cryogenic methods of cooling, but that presents a whole new set of issues to deal with and such methods may or may not be looked on favorable by a military looking for a system that does not take a masters degree to operate.

Second question about microwave weapons... they are discussed under the "Radio Frequency (RF) Weapons" section of the post. The international legalities concerning these weapons I don't have any data on. I defer that to Lampy...



Regarding Orbital bombardment (your 3rd question), the atmosphere certainly presents a challenge for lasers,
For small atmospheric anamolies and minimal clouds or dust a pliable, self-customizing lens has been developed; it uses a lower power targeting laser to sense atmospheric anamolies and then makes the appropriate adjustments to the main laser weapon's "contact lens"... thus maximizing the focus and intensity of the beam in spite of the atmosphere.
So yes, orbital bombardment by a laser is possible.

Particle beams present a bit of a different issue as there are charged particle beams and neutral particle beams, one type works best in space and the other works best in the atmosphere.... so there could be issues using one from orbit to attack an earth target...
I will have to defer details of this to some of the more scientific minded here on ATS...
Regards,
Natalie~







[Edited on 8-3-2004 by intelgurl]



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 12:04 PM
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Was to be passed, eh? Sounds like it might have made it, but I doubt it would. Even if it was, then it's not like anyone would care.

1. I was under the belief that there would be heat build up from continual, battelfield use- particularly since lasers are just a fancy heat-delivery system. It would heat the air aroudn a beam, and unless the weapon was mobile, things could get uncomfortable for people around the weapon, as well as internal breakdown of the laser itself.

2. Microwave is not a conventional weapon, however. It uses radio waves to heat things. Basically, it's undetectable until people start falling over dead, their insides literally broiled. It even has reputedly caused a person's clothign to vibrate to such a point they were brusied head to toe.

3. Orbital emplacements are a big issue for me, particularly since one may mount a number of ugly things and bombard an area with them. Lasers and PPCs in particular worry me, as liek you said, they may circumvent this as 'surgical strike' class weapons.

DE



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 12:10 PM
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I stated that the heat buildup's not really a problem, what I meant is that if you don't mind your barrel, capacitors etc. heating up to a couple of thousand kelvin, that's not a problem. It's things like conductivity and efficiency that will suffer. And yes, your power generating equipment will dump out a lot of waste heat.

As for orbit-to-ground or ground-to-orbit weapons, I believe there was a synchrotron weapon being tested at Area 51. It produced a distinct "stepped" cloud or vapour trail... quite intriguing. This was cause by various density levels in the atmosphere, apparently. Upper atmosphere ionics might interfere a bit, but not too much. Magnetic fields are your biggest problem with charged particle weapons. Neutral particle beams are probably your best bet, but they do damage that's similar to an X-ray laser, ie cooking your target from the inside out. They have to run into an molecule, basically.

Anybody who's physics-minded please correct me if I'm wrong...



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 12:18 PM
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Originally posted by DeusEx
Was to be passed, eh? Sounds like it might have made it, but I doubt it would. Even if it was, then it's not like anyone would care.

1. I was under the belief that there would be heat build up from continual, battelfield use- particularly since lasers are just a fancy heat-delivery system. It would heat the air aroudn a beam, and unless the weapon was mobile, things could get uncomfortable for people around the weapon, as well as internal breakdown of the laser itself.

2. Microwave is not a conventional weapon, however. It uses radio waves to heat things. Basically, it's undetectable until people start falling over dead, their insides literally broiled. It even has reputedly caused a person's clothign to vibrate to such a point they were brusied head to toe.

3. Orbital emplacements are a big issue for me, particularly since one may mount a number of ugly things and bombard an area with them. Lasers and PPCs in particular worry me, as liek you said, they may circumvent this as 'surgical strike' class weapons.

DE


Yes, you're right, there are a lot of smelly things high up that certain politicians are not happy about. Whether or not there are enough of these nice ones to make a difference is doubtful. Anyway, who cares about banning psychotronic weapons?

1. At the moment, we're talking semi-mobile and fixed laser emplacements. With a plasma-pumped laser, heat will be a very big issue, but I've heard no rumblings concerning those, they're mainly scientific in nature. Heat buildup in most lasers will come from resistance in your circuits and diodes, and from chemical reactions in the COIL laser. The chemical lasers like COIL also produce waste gases, which have to be disposed of! However, with modern battlefield tactics, it's unlikely that lasers will be used in mass engagements - they're an anti-projectile weapon, (at present) or to be used for blowing up defenceless stuff. If a US forward position starts getting shelled, that's because air support ain't done its job. So, not much constant work for lasers. This won't be the Russian front! But I understand where you are coming from.

With machine guns on the battlefield, with continuous fire, you swap out barrels or water cool them. Or just wait.

2. True. This is what direction finding is for. You get the same thing with snipers - don't knwo they're there until your Lieutenant drops dead with a hole in his head. To get around this, use sturdy radio receivers and triangulate the position of the attacker. Simple, if you're still alive.

3. There are cheaper ways of hurting things from high altitude, like bombers. Orbital emplacements do not have good response time, unless they're at VERY high altitude, whereupon their effectiveness decreases. If you want practical orbital bombardment, drop a rock on their heads. At 7km/s, the enemy will feel it.

[Edited on 8-3-2004 by Lampyridae]



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 02:19 PM
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DaRage asked about: "I wonder though. Is the US going to get so far ahead in military technology that it is inferior to the rest of the planet?"

I think that is a very interesting and thought-provoking question. Could we get so far advanced that future wars may be won by conventional means? Consider the guerrilla insurgency in Iraq. All of our high-priced weapons can not stop the guerrillas. The US should know the power of such warfare -- that's how we won our independence from Britain. They walked in a straight line shooting and we hid behind trees for protection and stealth.

So, do all of these weapons run the risk of obsoleting us in future warfare?



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 02:26 PM
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Lampyridae, the issue with microwave weapons is that they're an area-of-effect weapon. SO, you got a squad of troopies standing somewhere, minding their own bussiness. You sit their, point the mircowave weapon at them for two, three minutes...and they all fall over dead. Instant atrocity. They never stood a chance, never had any way to know it was coming. Then, they're dead. THAT is the issue with man-portatble microwave or even mounted microwave weapons.

DE



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 02:33 PM
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Excellent post, going to take me a while to read it all hehe (from my normal 10second overview..that is). I didn't read it all yet, but how could these lazers change the way the post-Iraq war could be fought? (guerilla warfare in cities etc). and sorry if its posted in there, I didn't get a chance to read it all yet as I just stated
.



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 02:42 PM
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Good point swampfox. Future conflicts will most likely not involve powerful nations with sophisticated military equipment. As you mentioned, in guerilla warfare in cities these kind of weapons wil be fancy, but quite useless.
An AC-130 gunship equipped with both it's 105mm howitzer and a laser weapon will be a very lethal machine.

I'm fascinated about the technology itself, but I'm afraid about its usefulness for modern warfare...

I'll post another reply tomorrow...

A short page I wrote about the airborne laser



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 05:00 PM
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Originally posted by DaRAGE
With the 10,000 Km/s, does the actual "bullet" survive up to the distance?

And i'm still a bit lost. Do those Particle Accelerator Beams fire Plasma bullets? Or actually just speed up a bullet to those speeds?


The "bullet" is actually doughnut shaped plasma, the "beam" is comprised of a very rapid succession of these plasma "toroids". There are variations of this technology where the plasma is projected at or near to light speed... some have even stated that theoretically this variation could project the plasma at speeds just beyond light speed, (one MIT researcher is saying his version actually projects the plasma at 600,000 miles per second... if I'm not mistakened that is beyond light speed).
Link:
www.electronpowersystems.com...

The range of the "Bullet" varies on atmospheric conditions, etc... but some are believed to have line of sight ranges in the hundreds of miles. Also a similar application in space would naturally have a longer range.
I'm sure some of the science folks could chime in here and give more specifics.

Natalie



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 05:33 PM
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Thanks for the reply Natalie. Quite useful indeed.

And if i'm not mistaken. I think the speed of light is something like 300,000 miles or kilometres per second. So 600,000 is twice the speed of light.



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 05:42 PM
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Great info Intelgurl.I'm wondering about the system that's planned for the JSF.Does the jet hafta fly straight and stable for the laser to work appropiately?Can it be used at supersonic speeds while manuevering if it comes under fire?



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 06:41 PM
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Originally posted by PARALYZ
Great info Intelgurl.I'm wondering about the system that's planned for the JSF.Does the jet hafta fly straight and stable for the laser to work appropiately?Can it be used at supersonic speeds while manuevering if it comes under fire?

The system for the JSF is a "lock-on, auto-follow" technology. so in answer to your question, no, the jet does not have to fly straight and stable. It can be manuevering out of harms way and at thesame time cutting a hole in the missile coming at it.



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 06:56 PM
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Originally posted by PARALYZ
Great info Intelgurl.I'm wondering about the system that's planned for the JSF.Does the jet hafta fly straight and stable for the laser to work appropiately?Can it be used at supersonic speeds while manuevering if it comes under fire?

Yes, I think that the JSF's laser will have a contact lens of sorts similar to the BILL on the Airborn Laser, that actually uses a smaller targeting laser to measure atmospheric anomalies and then configure the pliable contact lens to adjust for those anomalies... much like the optician makes a contact lens to correct for errors in your eye's lens, cornea, etc.

As for the stability factor, I defer that to Bios Electric who answered you in the post above. Bios is in a position to know...

Natalie



posted on Mar, 8 2004 @ 07:42 PM
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Originally posted by DaRAGE
Thanks for the reply Natalie. Quite useful indeed.

And if i'm not mistaken. I think the speed of light is something like 300,000 miles or kilometres per second. So 600,000 is twice the speed of light.


Actually the speed of light is normally rounded to 300, 000 kilometers per second or 186,000 miles per second...
I would like to clarify one thing concerning that post DaRage. I misread the information on Dr. Chen at MIT, apparently I saw 600,000 m/s and thought it was MILES... but on second thought that has to be 600,000 METERS... per second.
Better for me to catch my error and let you know than for you to catch it and think I'm in some way trying to lead you astray.
My apologies for making that mistake - however one must admit that 600,000 meters per second is an awesome speed.
That interprets to 600 kilometers per second or 372.8227153 miles per second.

By the way, (not that this has anything to do with your question), unlike Lasers, mirrors do not affect the path of a particle beam.

[Edited on 8-3-2004 by intelgurl]



posted on Mar, 9 2004 @ 04:57 AM
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Originally posted by DeusEx
Lampyridae, the issue with microwave weapons is that they're an area-of-effect weapon. SO, you got a squad of troopies standing somewhere, minding their own bussiness. You sit their, point the mircowave weapon at them for two, three minutes...and they all fall over dead. Instant atrocity. They never stood a chance, never had any way to know it was coming. Then, they're dead. THAT is the issue with man-portatble microwave or even mounted microwave weapons.

DE


This is true, but as I said, you use DF equipment similiar to a radar warning receiver. Even if your troops die, their personal DF's can link in to an artillery battery and get steel falling on the target. Also, microwaves are pretty much line of sight, so you have to be in the same area as your victims.

You get the same principle with conventional wepons. A good ambush, using claymore and machine guns, should be over in 30 or so seconds, less even. An artillery barrage or a sniper can wipe out half your squad. Or you could walk into a minefield. A microwave weapon is just another method of killing people brutally. It would be nice if we could do away with all such weapons, but there we are.

Troopies... are you a Brit by any chance?





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