Last month we saw that the United States Navy would be deploying their first ship-based laser weapon, now is our chance to see the Laser Weapon System (LaWS) in action.
The video above starts with a computer-rendered simulation of the weapon at work but if you want to skip over the horrible music and head straight to the good stuff, start the video at the 1:27 mark. The Laser Weapon System is designed to have two functions, it can either blind an incoming threat – leaving it vulnerable to ship-based fire – or it can be used to target an area of the threat, either setting it on fire or blowing it up in the case of some ‘overheated’ fuel. And yes, you’ll see it do both a ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ kill against a test drone in the video.
The LaWS will be deployed on the USS Ponce later this year where it will be used to take care of drones, small boats and missiles that may be attacking the vessel. If the real-world testing goes well, upgraded versions of the weapons platform will be seen on other navel vessels in future.
Source: Ars Technica