A little recap: this laser system is awesome, mostly because it’s a freaking laser system. But these aren’t the type that the X-wing was equipped with. They’re made for fighting off drones, small boats
and missiles that are within a mile of the ship. It might not be
destroying entire battleships, but that’s still a pretty amazing step.
Because it has such a small range and isn’t quite as strong as the
missiles and guns the Navy’s used to, the USS Ponce will be equipped with traditional weaponry as well.
year, a nonpartisan study conducted by the Congressional Research
Service stated that "Equipping Navy surface ships with lasers could lead
to changes in naval tactics, ship design and procurement plans for
ship-based weapons, bringing about a technological shift for the Navy — a
‘game changer’ — comparable to the advent of shipboard missiles in the
As our writer Colin Druce-McFadden pointed out, “That’s
some strong rhetoric.” He’s right, of course. It is. It also might be
completely true, but not for the reasons most of us would think. One of
the biggest advantages found in laser-based weapon systems versus
traditional ones is that some lasers are actually based on commercial
technology. That might sound crazy, until you think about the laser
pointer you annoyed your teachers with in fifth grade.
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