Pentagon Reveals 'Pain Ray'
Directed Energy Weapon

By David A. Fulghum in Washington
Aviation Week - May 7, 2001 pg. 83

Directed-energy weapons, including lasers and high-powered microwave (HPM) devices, continue to trickle out of the Pentagon's classified research and development programs. The latest is a non-lethal, millimeter-wave, anti-personal ray.
The 10 year, $40 million program was developed in a joint program with Raytheon, as a millimeter-wave (MMW) energy projector to be used for controlling crowds with burst of instantly painful rays. A likely tactical scenario would be to swivel rays of short burst, 95 GHZ energy, like a fire hose across a group of people to inflict sharp stings on the skin, even through clothing.
The Marine Corps wants the device to work at ranges of more than a half mile, beyond the effective range of small arms. The Marine's vehicle mounted "active denial system" is to be mounted on a Humvee light truck. Power would be provided by a turbo-alternator and battery system. Researches say they have made technological break through on power supplies to run such weapons even when mounted on vehicles or aircraft.
Any effects are harmless and immediately reversible. To keep the beam from inflicting burns or damaging eyes, it is limited in power and endurance. The developers are also convinced that the human's natural inclination-"the repel effect"- will be to escape the pain by running away or closing the eyes.
The directed-energy ray at the point of exposure causes moisture in the outer layer of the skin to heat to a temporary high enough, that it stings the surrounding tissue like drops of scalding water. The Ray penetrates less than 1/64 in.
Such a weapon would be useful in urban conflicts. It is also valued because they can scramble computer memories and otherwise disable computers that control key battlefield command and communications capabilities.
The Air Force wants to put the directed -energy weapons on unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to burn up the electronics of key devices, including vehicle ignition systems, as part of a combination computer and information warfare campaign.
Operational planers say the UAV is the most likely candidate for the HPM weapons since it can get closer to targets without endangering the crews.

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