U.S. Navy Moves One Step Closer to Killing Pirates With Lasers

04.11.11 Bucky Turco

Last week, the U.S. Navy successfully debilitated a small boat with a “solid-state, high-energy laser (HEL)” in a weapons test off the coast of California. Mounted to the deck of the USS Paul Foster, the laser ignited the target vessel’s engines like a magnifying glass does to insects on a sunny day, but as you’ll see by the video below, doesn’t look nearly as dramatic as it sounds.

I was expecting something along the lines of the Death Star’s destruction of Alderaan.