Lockheed Martin has shown off a terrifying new video of it testing its ATHENA laser weapon defence system.
While laser cannons are usually associated with films like ‘Star Wars’ they’ve also started to appear in real-life too.
Lockheed Martin’s system has been in development for several years, in fact back in 2015 we saw photographs that showed how it could effectively melt the engine out of a car.
Well now the company has finally turned its attention to the skies, with what looks to be a finished prototype.
In the video you can clearly see the weapon shoot not one, but five UAVs straight out of the sky using a precision shot.
Rather than causing the aircraft to explode, the system locks onto a vulnerable part of the aircraft and then cuts through the material until the aircraft can no longer sustain powered flight.
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Using lasers instead of conventional weapons has two benefits, the biggest of which is cost.
Firing the 30kw laser costs only as much as the electricity needed to power the weapon, which is often cheaper than missiles by several orders of magnitude.
The US Army aren’t the only ones interested in using lasers, the US Navy has also been developing its own high-powered ship-mounted laser and even has a finished prototype that’s currently undergoing sea trials.
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