The power of the new laser cannons will be capable of downing drones
The United Kingdom is set to deploy laser cannons, capable of downing drones, for the first time, according to Sarbaz.kz citing the Telegraph.
The new high-energy laser weapon system from Raytheon, along with its all-weather targeting camera, is housed within a battle-hardened enclosure, which is then mounted on the roof of a Wolfhound armored vehicle. The system includes a 15-kilowatt laser and a radar for tracking drones (unmanned aerial vehicles, UAVs).
Once a target is identified by the radar, the information is relayed to a command and control system operated by military personnel inside the Wolfhound vehicle. Soldiers can maneuver the camera to lock onto the target and track it to assess what the radar has detected, determining whether it's a friendly or hostile drone. Using a handheld controller, a soldier can release safety interlocks and then fire the laser at the target.
Using invisible beams of light, the laser directs electrical energy at the drone, generating a significant amount of heat to burn holes in the target and ultimately destroy it within seconds.
In the United States, the system has been proven to operate effectively in various adverse weather conditions, thanks to the camera's built-in infrared radiation, which aids in tracking targets in poor weather or low visibility.
The system, which is already in use by the U.S. armed forces, recently participated in live-fire exercises earlier this year, where it successfully detected, tracked, aimed at, and destroyed dozens of unmanned targets in scenarios involving short-range attacks, swarm attacks, and long-range threats.