Soldiers In Europe Are Laser-Blasting Drones Out Of The Sky

One of the United States Army’s main priorities is the development of a transportable war machine to counter short-range aerial defense threats, such as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV).

For about fifteen years, the Army’s inventory of military machines to defend against low-altitude and medium-altitude threats have diminished, warned Barry Pike, the Army’s program executive officer for missiles and space. Last month, he addressed more than 100 at the Association of the Army’s ‘Hot Topics’ forum on air and missile defense in Arlington, Virginia.

According to the Army News Service, the Pentagon has enjoyed decades of air superiority over all potential adversaries; however, that is rapidly changing with the worldwide proliferation of drones. Over the years, Army officials have failed to develop and deploy new high-tech weaponry for short-range aerial threats, thus creating a massive gap in short-range defenses.

It is a race against time for the Army to plug the gap in short-range defenses...

Richard P. DeFatta, director, Future Warfare Center, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command spilled the beans at last month’s forum on air and missile defense and told the audience that Army soldiers are conducting field training exercises with the first-ever practical laser weapon system in Europe.

As reported by Army Recognition, a select group of U.S. soldiers from the Field Artillery Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment are actively testing the high-tech laser weapon, called the Mobile High Energy Laser (MEHEL) mounted on the M1126 Stryker armoured personnel carrier. The Stryker-mounted MEHEL is designed for short-range aerial threats, such as weaponized drones.

U.S. Soldiers from the Field Artillery Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment are now equipped with newly developed laser weapon MEHEL mounted on 8×8 Stryker armoured vehicle. The Stryker with MEHEL 2.0 was presented for the first time on General Dynamics Land Systems booth during the AUSA exhibition in Washington D.C. in October 2016 equipped with a 5kW beam director.

 

The 5 kW laser project is part of the Mobile Experimental High Energy Laser. It represents an advance over a previous laser tested in 2016, and will lead into more powerful, longer ranging anti-drone, anti-missile laser systems. The Stryker-mounted MEHEL has proven to be extremely efficient in eliminating enemy drone targets, and its use in Europe will help the U.S. Army to assess emerging concepts, technologies and interoperability.

The MEHEL laser weapon is mounted on a Stryker (Picture source U.S. Army)

The Army has not released any additional information on the MEHEL trials in Europe, although, Army Recognition specifies the location of the test is in Grafenwoehr, Germany.

During a visit at the Grafenwoehr Training Area, Germany, March 6, 2018 by Maj. Gen. Wilson A. Shoffner, Fires Center of Excellence and Fort Sill commanding general, as well as Command Sgt. Maj. Carl Fagan, the senior enlisted advisor for Fires Center of Excellence and Fort Sill, U.S soldiers of the the Field Artillery Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment have showcase their knowledge and their ability to operate the new weapon.

U.S. army artillery soldiers were eager to demonstrate all they have learned, and couldn’t contain their enthusiasm regarding the unique opportunity and extreme potential of the new weapon system.  

Army Styker MEHEL laser test in Europe (source Task & Purpose) 

MEHEL is a 5kW laser system mounted on a Stryker-armored fighting vehicle chassis and serves as the primary vehicle for research and development. The Army acknowledges that high-energy lasers are a “low-cost, effective complement to kinetic energy to address rocket, artillery, and mortar, or RAM, threats; unmanned aircraft systems and cruise missiles,” said Army Recognition.

U.S. Army demonstrates MEHEL laser weapon on Stryker 8×8 armoured combat vehicle

“The MEHEL is now participating in the Joint Warfighting Assessment 2018 in Europe, which will help the Army to assess emerging concepts and technologies, and interoperability,” said Cecil A. Longino Jr., deputy director of the public affairs office for the Army Space and Missile Defense Command.

So it seems, the Army’s Stryker-mounted MEHEL system, designed to laser-blast Russian drones out of the sky, just took a major leap towards combat. Once the high-energy weapon passes its trials in Germany, there are indications that dozens of Strykers across Europe could be outfitted with this new high tech weaponry and then rapidly deployed to the Russian border. As the world concentrates on the nerve agent attack on former Russian double-agent in the United Kingdom, it is becoming increasingly obvious war is coming…

Comments

ThanksChump eforce Wed, 03/21/2018 - 07:48 Permalink

I have a few UAVs of my own. These LASERs would only mess up the image quality for a few frames, maybe fry one of the landing wheels.

 

I cover my drones in white shrink so they're pretty much unnoticeable. That white plastic is about 85% IR reflective. LASERs don't do much of anything to IR-reflective objects, but some punk ANTIFA asshole in a black hoodie? Pfffft!

 

I wonder if a country clever enough to design and build autonomous flying vehicles is also clever enough to figure out the IR-reflecting thing.

In reply to by eforce

Miner ThanksChump Wed, 03/21/2018 - 10:14 Permalink

85% reflective on a 5 kw laser means you still get 750 watts input power. 

Assuming the target spot is 1 cm^2, made of aluminum with a 10 second shot.  Assuming it's a solid chunk of aluminum 1cm^3 That's 2.7 grams of aluminum, 0.0027 kg, receiving an input power of 7500 joules.  The specific heat of aluminum is 900 joules per kilogram per kelvin. 7500/900/0.0027 = Temperature rise of ~3,000 C.

If I did that math right then that is more than hot enough to melt aluminum despite your reflective coating.  The numbers are worse for other aerospace materials like steel and fiberglass.

In reply to by ThanksChump

Indo_Expat crazytechnician Wed, 03/21/2018 - 15:19 Permalink

While melting the solder in the processing chips at the same time.

What goes up, will come down. Civilian drone operators fucked up when they defended the violation of private airspace around homes, now they will all be shot down and operators stupid enough to engage homeowners will be blasted also.

Stupid fucks. Fuck your drones, you have no right whatsoever to operate them in private airspace. 

In reply to by crazytechnician

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In reply to by purplewarrior

ZeroSpam slopz38 Wed, 03/21/2018 - 11:08 Permalink

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This chronic thread-hijacker and poster of "My last paycheck..." spam with Multiple Log-on's (aka "stizazz" and "pier" "beepbop"  "Braveforce"  "PRIVETHEDGE"  "SLOPZ38" "LLOLL"  "JUMANJI1959" -- hopefully banned) is a CHRONIC SPAMMER whose "disguised links" (under other log-on's) will take you to his Spam- and Trojan-laden webpages, fondly known by ZHers as "The Whacked Out Biblicism SPAM page" or "BIBLICISM GOES PORNO" where you will be the happy recipient of numerous virus from this very disturbed and obsessed individual, spamming here for more than five years.

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In reply to by slopz38

ZKnight stacking12321 Wed, 03/21/2018 - 10:44 Permalink

The Zionist puppet masters are using the US as their dispensible army to take over the world. US soliders are so dumb they will attack anything their overlords say is a threat to their thirst for power. US has soldiers all over the world attacking foreign countries they have no business being involved in. When they are left in ruins they celebrate their great achievements with propaganda movies.

In reply to by stacking12321

Faeriedust ZKnight Wed, 03/21/2018 - 14:07 Permalink

Not so stupid.  They just don't give a fuck. That's why we no longer have a draft.  Draftees were ordinary people.  Most of them had consciences.  They believed in God, and Hell, and worried about doing something wrong.  Now the military only hires volunteers.  These are people who go down and volunteer to go all over the world killing whoever they're told to for the glory of Exxon.  Anybody who has a problem with shooting innocent people, doesn't volunteer.  Anyone who volunteers, knows what they're in for.  Sure, they like to pretend that they're heroes, but they know better.  They've known better since the 70's. 

In reply to by ZKnight

DillyDilly Wed, 03/21/2018 - 04:34 Permalink

Try not to shoot down SKYLAB or the ISS while you're playing around with your billion dollar super soaker.

 

Next thing you know one of these fucking genius clowns is gonna come up with the 'boomerang laser' (that returns back to you, for, you know, re-deployment, in case it misses its target).

 

That'll be even be MOAR cost effective

ZeroGold Wed, 03/21/2018 - 04:53 Permalink

This looks way to slow, like destroying drone under magnifying glass and some sun. Some cheap aluminium foil would probably foil this attack. 3:) 

Sh3epdog Wed, 03/21/2018 - 05:35 Permalink

Laser weapons are fracking sweet! swarms of cheap drones are a pretty good counter to expensive individual fighter jets. Lasers could be an effective way to wipe em out, but down the line it may be best for the laser systems to be capable of operating autonomously and constantly - as a defensive asset. Such systems operating autonomously may be able to wipe out swarms of cheap drones. Battery technology is improving pretty rapidly, likely the capability of these sorts of laser weapons systems will see pretty dramatic improvements in the coming years.  

tnuctipun Wed, 03/21/2018 - 05:41 Permalink

Defeated by (simple technology) ground-hugging flying.  Drones excel at ultra-low level navigation.  Common problem with ships canon, then forts canon, then artillery, was the muzzle could not be depressed to cope with super-low target acquisition.

PrivetHedge Wed, 03/21/2018 - 05:50 Permalink

Multimillion dollar fricking laser, meet reflective model aircraft covering. QED.

I wonder if being hopelessly retarded is a mandatory requirement for war tool suppliers.

RedBaron616 Wed, 03/21/2018 - 05:51 Permalink

And the US STILL does not have any defense against cruise missiles. Hundreds of billions of dollars and we can't be bothered to protect American citizens. Too busy with the hubris of keeping the Empire humming. Just wait until the money runs out. . . .

Joe A Wed, 03/21/2018 - 05:54 Permalink

Good luck trying to stop an incoming nuclear missile or nuclear tipped artillery shell with that slow burning laser beam. Cause that is what will be used eventually when war breaks out in Europe. And conveniently for the US, that war with Russia will be fought out in Europe, not America.

Nevertheless, there are concerns that terrorists will use drones to poison water supplies in Europe. So, you might want to position them there. Stopping zee Rusjuns? Not so much I think.

Posa Joe A Wed, 03/21/2018 - 07:04 Permalink

Russia doesn't have the resources to fight a conventional war very long... tactical nukes will be rapidly deployed to take out tank brigades on the border and cruise missiles aimed at Euro capitals... they'll have 20 minutes to surrender.

US may do the same to Moscow... and then either stand down on both sides or automatically go strategic... this will happen fast people.

 

In reply to by Joe A

Radical Pragmatist Wed, 03/21/2018 - 07:39 Permalink

The U.S. would invade Russia for what reason?  Because Russia will never invade Europe.

Putin’s long term strategy is an integrated Pan-Eurasian economic architecture in which Europe would be a major trade partner. That is why the EAEU was stood up by Russia and the BRI stood up by China. With supporting investment platforms like the AIIB to enable the initiatives.

Given that objective, why would Russia seek to totally wreck its relationship with Europe? More importantly what would be the motive and objectives for Russia to attack Poland and the Baltic Republics – the fear-monger threats du jour? When an overrun of Poland would create 30+ million subversive malcontents that Russia would have to govern, and when there are only minority ethnic Russian populations in the Baltics?

The driving force behind the illogical and incoherent demonization of Russia is the Washington War Party that froths up the political environment with the militarized fear-mongering. Because there’s Big Money in it.

With this piece at least, ZH is shilling for the parasitic Neocons and Merchants of Death.

RedKnightOH5 Wed, 03/21/2018 - 08:26 Permalink

Laser cannons like this will save money over time in use.  Why shoot a $10,000 missile to take down one little enemy drone?  Use a laser and save the money for better use!!

 

But these lasers need more power for use in war.  But not bad in first time use.

 

And as for the comments from the idiots in this forum... grow up and use your balls like men.

TheMayor Wed, 03/21/2018 - 08:27 Permalink

If you want to invest in this space, buy the stock of ticker RADA.

Their technology allows the tracking of the objects to be hit.

RADA is virtually unknown company that has been in business for over a decade.

They doubled revenue last year, are profitable and recently started up a joint venture in the US because business is booming.

RADA

You are welcome.

Last of the Mi… Wed, 03/21/2018 - 10:42 Permalink

That was my thought. I wonder what that would do to a line of protesters at say 200 yd. Permanently seal your vagina hat to your head, hell permanently imprint your face into the tree you're standing in front of.

Faeriedust Wed, 03/21/2018 - 14:00 Permalink

LOL.  Another excuse for massive military spending on techno-toys!  You don't need especially high-tech, high-priced weapons to shoot down a bloody drone.  Any local tactical club of young engineers can come up with a dozen low-to-medium-tech methods on a scratch budget.  For a few starter ideas, see J Michael Greer's Retrotopia.  Or walk into the nearest science-fiction convention and offer to run a panel discussion.

fedupwhiteguy Fri, 03/23/2018 - 05:57 Permalink

o/t

50% of women have a man already picked out as plan b if their current relationship fails. (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2769593/HALF-women-fall-partn…)
60% of women admit to having an affair. (http://magazine.foxnews.com/love/cheating-statistics-do-men-cheat-more-…)
69% of wives initiate divorce. (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/women-more-likely-than-men-to-initi…)
90% of wives, wherein the couple are college-educated, initiates divorce. (http://www.yourtango.com/experts/cindy-holbrook/top-10-reasons-why-wome…)
10% of children are false paternity. (http://disinfo.com/2011/02/one-out-of-ten-people-werent-fathered-by-the…)
95% of genetic counselors lie about paternity. (http://thelibertarianrepublic.com/paternity-fraud-is-it-legal-to-lie-ab…)
41% of 1st marriages end in divorce. (https://www.mckinleyirvin.com/Family-Law-Blog/2012/October/32-Shocking-…)
60% of 2nd marriages end in divorce.
73% of 3rd marriages end in divorce.
82.2% of women granted child custody. (http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/p60-240.pdf)
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Postponing intercourse until 26+ avoids life's pitfalls (cock carousel riders are bad news all around). (https://youtu.be/um3EmS9DKsI?t=581)
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Women start losing their Sexual Market Value at 20 y.o. (http://www.hookingupsmart.com/2013/10/31/relationshipstrategies/conclus…)
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