Drones aren’t going away anytime soon so we have to accept the fact that they’re here to stay, hovering above our houses and our parks, forever being a source of nuisance for people who dislike these machines. The fact is that drones can do much more damage than just record video of you without your permission, there are serious safety and security concerns with regards to sensitive military and government installations, which is why Boeing has developed a new laser cannon that takes out drones mid-flight.
Boeing publicly tested its new laser cannon earlier this week at an industrial park in New Mexico, don’t compare it with a cannon out of Star Wars which shoots beams of light and makes all sorts of cool noises, but nevertheless it’s an effective tool to take down drones in the air.
What this cannon basically does is zap the drone with a precision laser and burn a hole into it to bring it down, in the demonstration the company used the cannon to burn holes in a stationary composite UAV shell to show off just how quickly it can do this, at full power the target catches fire in just two seconds.
It has been designed with portability in mind, the cannon is small enough that it can fit in four suitcase-sized boxes and a couple of technicians or soldiers can set it up in just a few minutes.
Boeing didn’t talk about the cannon’s range at the demo but does say that if you can see the target even with binoculars it’s capable of bringing it down. The company expects this weapon to be ready for market in about two years and will look to further refine and improve this technology over the next few years.