Germans develop laser that can shoot down drones
A laser weapons system that can shoot down two drones at a distance of over a mile has been demonstrated by Rheinmetall Defence.
The German defence firm used the high-energy laser equipment to shoot fast-moving drones at a distance.
The system, which uses two laser weapons, was also used to cut through a steel girder a kilometre away.
The company plans to make the laser weapons system mobile and to integrate automatic cannon.
The 50kW laser weapons system used radar and optical systems to detect and track two incoming drones, the company said. The nose-diving drones were flying at 50 metres per second, and were shot down when they reached a programmed fire sector.
The weapons system locked onto the unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) by using radar for a rough approximation of the location of the targets, then fine-tuned the tracking using an optical system.
The high-energy laser system was used to cut through a 15mm-thick steel girder, and to shoot out of the air a steel ball designed to mimic a mortar round.It sounds like this weapon has the potential to mimic the Israeli Iron Dome system in dealing with incoming rockets and mortar rounds. It also has potential as a anti aircraft weapon that will be more difficult to spoof. I suspect its biggest vulnerability will be it power connection. Knock out the power and you have knocked out the weapon.