You're heading out to the territories on Saturn's moon Europa and things could get dicey. Or maybe you're here on Earth, but you don't like the idea of walking around those alien-infested cities at night without some good firepower. That's where Northrop Grumman's new KILLSTRIKE weaponized laser comes in. No, we're not kidding. These babies are on sale now, and you could be burning holes in space bugs with them tomorrow. Of course, you'd better read the fine print before buying one. First of all, the KILLSTRIKE is 400 pounds, so it's not really even luggable. You're going to need another machine to carry this "mobile" unit around. And much worse, it's one of those "batteries not included" kind of deals. Turns out, according to Northrop Grumman chief Dan Wildt:
Combined with advanced electro optical and/or infrared sensors, the FIRESTRIKE™ laser can provide self-defense [or] precision strike capabilities.
Oh, OK — so now I need "advanced infrared sensors" to make this laser burn out bug eyes. What else do I need? Apparently, you really need about eight KILLSTRIKES to really have a proper laser blast, because one only delivers a measly 15 kilowatts. According to The Register:
The firm has said that at least eight of these can be linked up to get a proper 100 kilowatt beam, generally seen as the threshold for a true battlefield weapon. Beam quality, for the laser aficionados among those reading, is listed at "nominally 1.5 times the diffraction limit".
Apparently you can link them using ethernet, which is at least one thing I won't need to buy in order to have a real laser blaster. I've got tons of ethernet cable lying around. Now I just need eight KILLSTRIKES and an advanced infrared sensor, and I'll be ready to face the danger. Weaponized Raygun [via The Register]