Photos of the Day: The Navy's Laser Weapon System
The Navy’s Laser Weapon System (LaWS) uses the Phalanx Close in Weapon System’s (CIWS) radar track to obtain a target and combines six high-energy laser into a focused beam of light. While the laser uses a mere 30 kilowatts per volley — a few dollars a shot — the weapon is hampered by inclement weather and other adverse conditions.
The Navy designed LaWS to deal with “asymmetrical threats” — enemy drones, speed boats, and swarm boats.
Peter Morrison, the Office of Naval Research program manager for LaWS, noted that "The solid-state laser is a big step forward to revolutionizing modern warfare with directed energy, just as gunpowder did in the era of knives and swords."