Ready, aim, dazzle ...

Feb. 9, 2006
The Air Force Research Lab in New Mexico has developed a "nonlethal" Personnel Halting and Stimulation Response Rifle (Phasr), which temporarily blinds the person in its sights.

The Personal Halting and Stimulation Response Rifle (Phasr) automatically senses distance to a target.


 

The U.S. Dept of Defense thinks the weapon might be used to dazzle suspects who drive through roadblocks. But the DoD has yet to reveal details of how the laser works.

Earlier versions of similar weapons were banned under a 1995 UN convention called the Protocol on Blinding Laser Weapons. One key point: The protocol does not prohibit lasers that temporarily blind an enemy.

"In the past, lasers of this type often permanently blinded people," says Tobias Feakin, an expert at Bradford University's Non-Lethal Weapons Research Project in the U.K. The new system, he says, may eliminate the problem by using less-powerful beams.

But even low-power laser systems can damage eyes at close quarters or over extended periods. The Phasr, however, automatically senses the distance to its target. The weapon also employs a two-wavelength laser to counter goggles that filter out certain wavelengths of laser light.

Sponsored Recommendations

The entire spectrum of drive technology

June 5, 2024
Read exciting stories about all aspects of maxon drive technology in our magazine.

MONITORING RELAYS — TYPES AND APPLICATIONS

May 15, 2024
Production equipment is expensive and needs to be protected against input abnormalities such as voltage, current, frequency, and phase to stay online and in operation for the ...

Solenoid Valve Mechanics: Understanding Force Balance Equations

May 13, 2024
When evaluating a solenoid valve for a particular application, it is important to ensure that the valve can both remain in state and transition between its de-energized and fully...

Solenoid Valve Basics: What They Are, What They Do, and How They Work

May 13, 2024
A solenoid valve is an electromechanical device used to control the flow of a liquid or gas. It is comprised of two features: a solenoid and a valve. The solenoid is an electric...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Machine Design, create an account today!