PortandTerminal.com, May 23, 2020
HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA – Today’s “Maritime Image of the Day” is an image released by the Navy that shows a beam emanating from the USS Portland ship which appears to take out a drone in flight.
The location of the test, which took place on May 16, was not revealed by the Navy, but USNI News reported that it took place off Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
The Navy said the use of the Laser Weapon System Demonstrator (LWSD) on a Pacific Fleet ship “is the first system-level implementation of a high-energy class solid-state laser.”
The power of the weapon was not disclosed as part of the revelation but a 2018 report from the International Institute for Strategic Studies said it was expected to be a 150-kilowatt machine.
In effect, that means it could be deployed to wipe out drones and small boats with a single strike.
“With this new advanced capability, we are redefining war at sea,” said Captain Karrey Sanders, commanding officer of the Portland, in a statement.
Here’s a video of the beam successfully destroying a drone.
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