BAE Systems Announce Nonlethal Defensive Laser
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BAE Systems Announce Nonlethal Defensive Laser

BAE Systems, the global security agency has tested a prototype non lethal laser to be used to deter pirates. The laser disorients the pirates without inflicting any permanent damage.

According to a CBS News Report, pirate attack more than doubled in 2009. Between the months of January and June, there were more than 240 pirate attacks, up from 114 attacks for the same period in 2008. Seventy-eight ships were boarded by pirates. Thirty-one of the ships were hijacked by the pirates. The pirates took 561 crew members hostage, injuring 19 crew members and killing six of the crew members during the attacks. The heavily armed pirates targeted unarmed vessels. What to do, the United States Navy could not be everywhere at the same time.

Arming Civilian Ships

There was discussions being held about the pros and cons of arming crew members or hiring private security forces. This idea was not very popular with ship owners who insured their crewmembers and the cargo they carried. Crew members are frequently held for ramsom by the pirates but seldom killed or injured. Even more rare is where a whole ship is lost. Equipping a ship with a private security force is froth with other dangers and legal consequences. For example, if the security detail was to mistakenly fire upon an innocent fishing vessel, under international law, it would be the ship's owner who would be held responsible.

BAE Systems of Bristol, UK to the Rescue

On January 10, 2011, BAE Systems announced the prototype of a nonlethal laser defense system for cargo vessels, container ships, oil tankers and other commercial vessels. The Neodymium Yttrium Aluminium Garnet (Nd:YAG) laser is powerful enough to cause disorientation, making it impossible for the pirates to aim weapons like AK-47s and RPGs (Rifle-Propelled Grenades) accurately, yet low enough to cause no permanent damage to the pirates eyes. The system use a computer controlled targeting system that makes the disorienting effect more pronounce and effective when used against multiple targets. The system will be a warning to pirates at a distance of 2 kilometers and disorientation at closer ranges.

What is BAE Systems?

BAE Systems is a global defence and security company with approximately 100,000 employees worldwide. The Company delivers a full range of products and services for air, land and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, security, information technology solutions and support services.

Just the First Weapon in an Arsenal of Nonlethal Weapons

Bryan Hore, the Systems Development Manager for BAE System told reporters that the laser cannon is just the first of a whole system of nonlethat weapons under development to ward off pirates. The nonleathal weapons may not stop piracy completely but they will make ships equipped with them less appealing targets.

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Comments (4)

I sure don't agree with the way robbers are treated. They should be stopped from doing their evil deeds and not just dissuaded to go to another ship to do their evil deeds that don't have this equipment. There is some definitely wrong with this idea. There is nothing wrong with your well explained info.

This is another breakthrough topic, Jerry. British Aerospace is a credible company which have pioneered cutting edge technology products aside from airplanes and this type of defensive weapon will indeed fill up the niche brought by the issue of piracy near Somalia and other critical ocean routes.

Jerry, if I could vote this one up more than 100 times, i would. Excellent work

Yes, excellent work, Jerry. Sorry, 'm out of votes.