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Shark

UK Police Test 'Temporarily Blinding' LASER 398

esocid writes "Called the SMU 100 it costs £25,000 and sends out a three-meter 'wall of light' that leaves anyone caught in it briefly unable to see. Designed by a former Royal Marine Commando, it was originally developed for use against pirates in Somalia. While tasers and CS gas work well over short distances the laser is said to be effective at up to 500 meters (1,640ft). Being targeted by the beam has been compared to staring into the sun before being forced to turn away. Paul Kerr, managing director of Clyde-based Photonic Security Systems, which came up with the design, said 'If you can't look at something you can't attack it.'"
The Military

Laser Weapon Shoots Down Airplanes In Test 627

airshowfan writes "Boeing's directed-energy weapons (a.k.a. frickin' laser beams) have been getting some attention lately. The Advanced Tactical Laser (ATL) is a C-130 that famously burned a hole through a car's hood, and the YAL-1 AirBorne Laser is a 747 that shoots a laser from its nose that is powerful enough to bring down an ICBM. But even cooler is the Mobile Active Targeting Resource for Integrated eXperiments (MATRIX), a laser that is mounted on a truck (which probably costs less than a 747, but who knows) and that can shoot down small aircraft, as shown in the picture on this article. (The Laser Avenger supposedly also has this capability). We live in the future!"
Power

Japan Eyes Solar Station In Space 247

An anonymous reader writes "By 2030 [Japan] wants to collect solar power in space and zap it down to Earth, using laser beams or microwaves. The government has just picked a group of companies and a team of researchers tasked with turning the ambitious, multi-billion-dollar dream of unlimited clean energy into reality in coming decades."

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