Skip to comments.Report: Raytheon 'heat beam' weapon ready for Iraq
Posted on 12/04/2004 1:58:41 AM PST by BritishBulldog
Report: Raytheon 'heat beam' weapon ready for Iraq Boston Business Journal Government defense giant Raytheon Co. has developed the first nonlethal weapon that fires a heat beam to repel enemies and reduces the chance of innocent civilians being shot, a Pentagon official said.
Raytheon, the world's largest missile maker, delivered a prototype to the U.S. military last month. The product is expected to be evaluated from February through June to determine whether to equip U.S. forces with it, Colonel David Karcher, director of the Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate, told Bloomberg Business News.
With U.S. casualties in Iraq rising, expectations are growing that Raytheon's weapon, called the Active Denial System, could be sent to Iraq in the next year, according to Charles "Sid'' Heal, commander of the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department. A former Marine, Heal headed nonlethal-weapons training for the U.S. military in Somalia in 1995 and advised Raytheon on the beam's development.
"It's there, it's ready,'' said Heal, who has felt the weapon's beam and compares it to having a hot iron placed on the skin. "It will likely be in Iraq in the next 12 months. They are very, very close.''
The weapon, mounted on a Humvee vehicle, projects a "focused, speed-of-light millimeter wave energy beam to induce an intolerable heating sensation,'' according to a U.S. Air Force fact sheet. The energy penetrates less than 1/64 of an inch into the skin and the sensation ceases when the target moves out of the beam.
The weapon could be used for crowd control and is effective beyond the range of bullets fired by small arms, Karcher said. The effective range of an AK-47 assault rifle is as far as 273 yards, while an M16A2 rifle has a range of 400 meters.
The primary benefit would be protecting U.S. troops, Heal said. The weapon would also limit deaths of noncombatants, he said.
"This forces your adversary to declare intentions,'' Heal said. "U.S. forces get killed because they are reluctant to shoot. It happens in Iraq every day."
"This is where the future is going,'' Raytheon Chief Executive William Swanson, 55, said at a conference in Tucson, Ariz., where he introduced the weapon to investors Wednesday. "This is the ability to protect our troops, and we're talking about the speed of light.''
Raytheon is two years into a four-year, $40 million development contract, Karcher said. How soon the weapon is deployed will depend on the military's interest, and while the technology may be ready, troops must also be trained on it and engagement rules must be decided by a four-star general, he said.
Heal said the military version would cost about $1 million, and the U.S. military could require many.
Karcher said the first prototype cost about $10 million.
Heal told Bloomberg Business News that Raytheon could expand the market by selling a smaller version to law-enforcement agencies. The company is working on a smaller, tripod-mounted version for police forces, and the price would have to come down to a few hundred thousand dollars each to be affordable, he said.
Bummer; any self-respecting comics or science fiction geek would have known better.
THIS is what any self-respecting "heat beam" device is SUPPOSED to look like, for heaven's sake:
So....all they have to do is run away? Or wear some thick clothes?? This seems kind of useless, doesn't it?
Still, the idea of non-lethal war weaponry is fascinating. Many years ago I remember seeing a U.S. News & World Report article on the matter...I recall being amazed at the ideas.
I am also amazed at the decency of Americans: trying to find a way to make weaponry more discriminate.
Progress marches on, but in the long run PC war won't work. Useful for crowd control.
Transmitting technology has already reached these frequencies;
Nearly all countries in the world use the measuring technology up to 50 GHz and consequently cannot measure the signals at the frequency of 95 GHz.
Other frequencies or areas of electromagnetic radiation could not be taken into consideration since:
The frequency of 34 GHz is rather occupied and can be measured in nearly all countries,
Infrared radiation (0.78 to 100 μm) is visible and can be measured,
Visible light (0.39 to 0.78 μm) can be seen,
Ultraviolet (UV) radiation (0.20 do 0.39 μm) is harmful to cells and causes cancer of the skin,
Laser (λ = 380 to 950 nm): it has been established that the level causing pain may blind the man.
Effects on human beings ... strength and form of the signal, transmitter
Effects of electromagnetic radiation on human beings depend on the frequency, strength and form of the signal.
Strength and form of the signal depend on the transmitter power.
Effects of electromagnetic radiation on human beings are divided into thermal and non-thermal.
Tests were made on a model human being with temperature 34 ºC. The US scientists established that the model perceived variation in temperature by 0.1 ºC, which means the power density of 45 W/m2.
Pain threshold occurs at the temperature higher by 10 ºC, which means Smin = 12 500 W/m2.
To achieve the pain threshold at the edge of the ADT effective range (640 m), the power density should be doubled to 25 000W/m2.
Yet, by power density S = 25 000 W/m2 only the pain threshold is reached.
General professional public has not known the strength of the microwave radiation power density that would cause pain sensation forcing the man to withdraw, still without any injuries, yet. For that purpose the manufacturers are performing further tests.
A simple example might be of help.
The maximum radiation power of the sun has usual value 800 W/m2. In secondary school textbooks of physics an example of focusing the sunlight using a 5 cm lens is given. When a beam of sunlight is reduced approximately to the width of 8 mm it causes unbearable pain sensation in less than a second. The strength of electromagnetic radiation of the visible light increases from 800 W/m2 to 31 250 W/m2 by focusing.
Therefore, the strength of radiation at the frequency of 95 GHz causing a pain sensation should be doubled at least to exceed twice its threshold value thus causing a severe pain. In that case the power density Sd,max would be 50 000 W/m2.
In order to reach double threshold pain sensation at the maximum of the ADT effective range the transmitter power of a 2m parabolic antenna with 95 % efficiency should be:
Pd,max ≥ 0.83 Sd,max= 41 500 W.
Consequently, at the edge of the ADT effective range double power is necessary, i.e. 83 000 W.
However, this power would not be sufficient. To transfer the energy from a transmitter to antenna a wave-guide is used. At the frequency of 95 GHz the losses of energy are inevitable and amount to 20 % approximately when high technology confocal wave-guides are involved.
Taking into account all the above, the power of the transmitter should be at least 100 kW.
Pentagon declared the power of the ADT transmitter to be 100 kW although no further explanation of the power was given.
The following will help us to arrive at the correct conclusion. There are two types of power - the average and peak.
The average power means the power that heats a certain quantity of water to a certain temperature, or, heats the skin and causes a pain sensation. When lower frequencies are involved this power is called effective transmitter power.
So far, it has not been heard or seen that a transmitter with effective power of 100 kW and the frequency of 95 GHz would exist.
Most certainly it is the peak power and pulse transmission that are involved.
I'd prefer that we make one that will cut off limbs and heads instead of just making a hot spot...
"I'd prefer that we make one that will cut off limbs and heads instead of just making a hot spot..."
With a thing that size mounted on the roof, kiss it goodbye along with the roof when you hit speeds around 50 mph. It also looks like an easy target even for a cross-eyed terrorist.
In other words... "The effective range of an AK-47 assault rifle is as far as
273 yards 819 feet, while an M16A2 rifle has a range of 400 meters 1312 feet."
Where the hell are the editors to make sure the units are the same! Ugh. Do we have to do ALL the lifting these days?
McDonalds has been working on this technology for years,,,
Great, now we can get rid of the hostile snow on our houses during winter zapping it off in seconds. Not! It is easy to dream commercial versions to be abused by the terrorists that it is likely to be banned from the commercial market. Too bad.
Then again I would have no problem if we nuked the islamosheetheadscum either, I guess that's why My finger is not near the "button".
"To use on the "Religion of Peace" members that need to be taught a major lesson. Just think of the psychological effect that it would have to be Habib standing next to Achmed and Achmed get his head sliced off and the wound cauterized in seconds. Habib would think before acting stupid again"
Trouble is, killing these nutters doesn't have that effect does it?
They see young Ahmed get whacked & envy him because they believe that he's just about to start deflowering the first of his 72 virgins and they can't wait to get cracking themselves, hence you have all these Islamic fruitcakes queueing up to for martyrdom.
Now a good dose of extreme pain dealt whenever they get too close to that which they shouldn't may have a different effect. As far as I know, Allah offers no virgins for pain received.
Maybe it would if done in this manner. No noise, thwack of a bullet or bomb going off. Just the thud as Achmeds' head hits the ground at Habibs' feet.
O.K. so We castrate them before thudding the head to the ground, then the 72 virgins are out of the game too.
Then again you may be correct, after all these guys ARE whack-jobs to begin with.
This might come in handy for Red Sox playoff games!
I say, if it's ready then give it a go. The chances of it being effective on a truck platform are pretty slim though. With $10 worth of supplies from the hardware store, I bet I could walk right up to it. Granted, it could probably displace a large number of people from an area, but a few motivated individuals could cause problems.
Likewise, 100 KW of radiated power is a pretty big EM target. Given the success of guided munitions on the battlefield, how long will it take Akmed to improvise some of the features out of the Hobby Shop of Horrors?
If we're going to emulate sci-fi fantasy in war, we would do better if we added a horror component as well. Fear of pain and death are far more potent weapons than the actual experiences. The islamist's twisted sense of "honor" is useful too. These people will stone a daughter to death for being raped for God's sake.
We should be able to do better. This is a solution looking for a problem IMHO.
Now that we know the mutts are doped up with heroin, speed, coke, and what have you, I wonder how effective this weapon will be?
What is the source of energy used to power such a weapon. I imagine you'd need a pretty big battery to power the beam (energy in - energy out kind of thing.)
Could someone build something a little different that would be effective against an Abrams tank? Slightly different frequency heats up the tank making the temperature inside intolerable for the crew.
A dangerous road we are showing the way for. The technology would not be very sophisticated and other countries would be able to use the idea.
Thank you. The minute I read or hear "meters" I get totally lost. They didn't make us learn that Euro-measurement stuff when I was in school, and now my youngest comes home with homework in that stuff and I can't help her with it.
"With $10 worth of supplies from the hardware store, I bet I could walk right up to it"
Tin foil hat?
I know: the movie "Real Genius".
I'm taking bets on when this will be used for civilian crowd control on the folks at home.
Attorneys everywhere know this beam is carcinogenic, and will lock on to tax payers wallets like a pit bull.
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