The U.S. Navy Has Laser Cannons, And They’re Awesome

The Klingons won’t even see it coming.

The U.S. Navy announced yesterday that it’s going to install a prototype laser cannon on the USS Ponce by next year, making it the first laser-armed vessel in the fleet. The new Laser Weapons System (or LaWS) is shown shooting down a drone with an invisible beam of energy in a video released by the Navy:

The Navy says the weapon system only $32 million to develop — a downright bargain by Pentagon procurement standards. Development of the F-35, the U.S. military’s next-generation fighter jet, is seven years behind schedule and has cost taxpayers $396 billion so far by comparison. LaWS is cheap to operate too: a single shot costs an estimated $1. The New York Times reports that the Ponce, once equipped, will deploy to the Persian Gulf as part of the U.S. fleet monitoring Iran.

LaWS isn’t a wonder weapon, though. It doesn’t work in bad weather or over long distances, and so far it can only take down aerial drones and small boats — it wouldn’t be much use against North Korean missiles, Iranian fighter jets, or even a TIE Fighter. With a few more years of testing and a couple million dollars in research, though…

Thanks, Obama.

Via reddit.com

Check out more articles on BuzzFeed.com!

This post was created by a user and has not been vetted or endorsed by BuzzFeed's editorial staff. BuzzFeed Community is a place where anyone can post awesome lists and creations. Learn more or post your buzz!

Facebook Conversations
          
    Hot Buzz

    What Song Would You Want To Hear If You Only Had Minutes To Live?

    collection

    55 Super Awkward Middle School Photos

    collection
    Now Buzzing