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Video: Watch the US Military's 'heat beam' weapon in action

The ‘active denial system’ directs an electromagnetic beam which feels like a sudden wave of heat.

The beam transmitter unit.
The beam transmitter unit.
Image: DOD Photo

THE US MILITARY has demonstrated a heat beam weapon it describes as a non-lethal ‘active denial system’.

The system sends a sudden wave of heat as an electromagnetic beam and it can be used to target individuals as well as wider groups of people.

The beam involved uses the same millimetre-wave technology used in airport body scanners, according to the Pentagon, and it works by heating water molecules in the tissue to induce an irresistible urge to turn away.

Defence experts involved in the project say that although the beam’s transmitter is 100 times more powerful than a standard microwave, the radio frequency involved does not penetrate deeply enough to cause injury.

It has taken more than a decade to develop the weapon. The Pentagon says it has never been deployed in the field and the trigger guidance system automatically shuts off after three seconds for safety.

Here, the military demonstrates the heat beam system which it says only penetrated 1/64th into a person’s skin and cornea:


(Video via USFORCESTV)

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