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Watch The US Navy’s Laser Weapon in Action

Laser weapons still sound like something from Sci-Fi movies, but they’ve actually been in the works for a while, just maybe not in the way we think, thanks to the aforementioned science fiction flicks. There are no “pew pew” sounds and there are no green, red or blue pulses of light flying through the air when our Navy fires it’s active laser weapon. In fact, the laser is invisible to the naked eye and is also silent, making it a lot less entertaining than Hollywood had us believe laser weapons would be, but rest assured, it packs plenty of punch to make up for it’s lack of pizzazz.

Functionally speaking, the advanced laser weapon works like a laser pointer on steroids. There’s a chamber within the cylindrical weapon housing that contains some “special materials” which will likely remain unnamed for the foreseeable future, that release photons. This is exactly how those red, green and blue laser pointers work, only this one is many times more powerful. This creates a highly focused and intensely powerful beam of light that is capable of an unprecedented level of precision in its destruction. Think about it like this: even the most powerful projectile weapon has to deal with gravity, wind and in some cases, even the rotation of the earth to strike it’s target accurately. Laser weapons do not have to deal with these restrictions, and since they move at the speed of light, there’s literally no delay in “pulling the trigger” and the target being destroyed.

I do have to wonder, knowing what I do about photons, if this weapon can be foiled with a simple mirror. Photons, no matter how intensely focused and powerful, are just particles of light. It seems, at least to my admittedly uneducated Alabama brain, that a perfect reflective surface would simply bounce the laser back toward the weapon, or harmlessly out into space. Maybe somebody out there smarter than myself can explain why that’s not the case.