50kW Laser can Shoot down Drones and Mortar Shells

A German defence company called Rheinmetall has successfully created a duel-beam laser turret that’s accurate enough to shoot down moving aircraft and even mortar shells.  It’s just another step towards Star Wars becoming a reality.

In tests, the deadly weapon was capable of slicing through a 15mm steel girder at a range of 900 meters, not quite the death star, but heading in the right direction…  The use of high-powered lasers to destroy targets is nothing new, Raytheon created such a device in 2010; what’s neat about this system is its ability to target such tiny objects at insane distances.

A the minute the system requires a huge amount of support equipment that’s challenging to transport, in the future it’s not unreasonable to imagine such accurate and powerful weapons on ships and even aircraft, try dodging a laser during a dog-fight!  Clearly the next step will be to produce shield generators to combat the deadly beam. [rheinmetall]