The U.S. Army has reportedly field-tested vehicle-mounted anti-drone lasers in an effort to combat ISIS-piloted drones, according to Stars and Stripes.
“Infantry-carrying Stryker vehicles mounted with the Mobile High Energy Laser, a 5-kilowatt beam that scrambles the circuits of drones, took part in demonstrations at the Maneuver Fires Integration Experiment at Fort Sill in Oklahoma, a 10-day exercise that ended last week,” the site reported. “The system includes radar detection and a camera to visually track aircraft on a screen, where an operator targets the drone with the laser.”
“A ‘hard kill’ will disable the drone mid-flight and send it crashing to the ground,” the report stated, adding, “A ‘soft kill’ occurs when the laser severs the communications link between the drone and its ground control station.”
The exercise reportedly brought down 50 drones, encouraging further use of the laser, which can be mounted on vehicles where .50 caliber machine guns usually sit.
“[Then] we can send artillery after the ground control station,” explained Lt. Col. Jeff Erts.
ISIS drones, which are purchased as off-the-shelf devices that the public can also buy, have been used to spy on western troops as well as spread propaganda through speakers. Bombs have also been strapped to these drones, prompting an increased security concern.
In November, Breitbart Tech reported on another anti-drone gun which could scramble an enemy drone and either destroy it, lower it to a safe area, or return it to the controller.
Though currently illegal on U.S. soil, the gun, which is shaped in the form of a rifle and is attached to a backpack, requires just one user to control, immediately cuts off video feed from the offending drone to the user, and keeps the drone intact so that it can further examined in an investigation.