Thursday, April 14, 2011

Finally, The Navy Has Laser Guns

If we look at older science fiction (think the original Star Trek), we can see that there are some technological advancements they got very wrong.  We already have better computer displays than whatever Spock was looking into and my cell phone is already smaller than Captain Kirk's.  But for all of our advancements, there is one area in which we are way behind what people in the 60's thought:  laser guns.  It seems like everybody thought we'd trade in bullets for batteries by now.

Well they may not have been that far off.  From the Associated Press:
The Navy for the first time last week successfully tested a solid-state high-energy laser from a ship. The beam, which was aimed at a boat moving through turbulent Pacific Ocean waters, set the target's engine on fire... The baseball-sized laser beam... could be used to stop small crafts from approaching naval ships. It could also target pirates.
That's right - the Navy is going to be shooting pirates with lasers.  We live in an age of wonders.

Of course the whole laser gun thing turns out to be a little less cool than what the starship Enterprise has.  Here's the movie:

So there are no sound effects or explosions and nobody is getting vaporized anytime soon, but hey, I suppose we shouldn't be too hard on ourselves since we still have 300 years to develop phasers.


  1. Well those pirates should be shaking in their boots now! Actually it is pretty cool Nick. I am always impressed how technology turns out so different than many people have imagined as the years go by.

  2. Impressive, I wonder when I can finally get my hands on a take-home version of this, lol

  3. Quantum_Flux,

    Using the Guest option you can change your name to Quantum_Flux if you prefer.

  4. Eh, not so much a big deal actually -


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