back to article USAF seeks diamond gunports for electropulse ray-cannon

The US Air Force has made an appeal for a range of new technologies which it will need in building its planned new arsenal of aerial rayguns. In particular, it wants large artificial optically-correct diamonds for use as portholes through which to shoot electropulse microwave blaster cannons. Under its "Directed Energy [Weapon …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    Right Then

    You lot keep promising me freakin' sharks with freakin' lasers on their heads but haven't delivered. Snap to it boys I want one for my... umm.... aquarium, yeah aquarium that's it /cue evil laughter =P.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sweet, finally!

    A "sharks with frikkin' lasorrrrs!" story - you've made my day.......

  3. Henry

    Maybe they should be reading El Reg

    .... and talk to the Boffins at Fraunhofer.

  4. Anonymous Coward


    No Phase Plasma rifle in the 40-Watt range?

    Also, the "bucket-o-sunshine" description of a nuke made me chuckle, what other phrases are used to describe instant death by nuke?

    The military come up with some wonderful phrases to try and sanitize killing, maiming or just blowing shit up. For instance, "Friendly Fire" to describe killing your own side. Anyone got any others?

    Back on topic, my guess is that a optically correct diamond, 2.5 inches across would cost a bit to make, if indeed it can currently be made.

  5. John

    transparent aluminum?

    Maybe they could talk to they Austrian blokes and see if their basalt-fibre whatsits can do the trick?

    "...while similar in usage to carbon fibre and fibreglass, it's tougher than the latter and cheaper than the former. It is also fully recyclable and has a specific tenacity three times that of steel. At least that's what is says here.

    The basalt-fibre body panels will apparently be transparent giving the car the appearance of being made of glass..."



  6. Anonymous Coward

    Sharks or Jets?

    What's with the sharks with lasers obsession?

    Just an observation, but sharks scare people, and they tend to move away from them very quickly!! Why not mount the lasers on dolphins instead, they'd have a much better chance of getting close up before blasting bad guys (and girls) right between the eyes! :-D

  7. Martin Budden

    "laser amplifier"

    would that be a laaser?

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    PDF anyone

    or RTF?

    Paris, because even she knows about PDFs.

  9. jon

    I like it..

    How many 'D' cells does it take?

  10. Clint Sharp
    Paris Hilton

    @Sharks or Jets AC

    Hmm, I spot a disadvantage with the Dolphin plan as well, what they really need is a semi aquatic mammal for land/sea roles here..

    How about um...

    Beavers with frikkin lasers?

    Paris, beaver?

  11. Nemo Metis


    I for one welcome our lazer headed shark-type overlords.... when they arrive, that is.

    @ Pad: my favourite so far is "suicide by cop". Always brings a smile!

  12. Deadly_NZ


    Maybe they should get Microsoft to supply the diamonds ...

    Oooppss Sorry you got Cubit Zirconia's Programming error Bang

  13. Telecide

    business as usual

    You'd think that with the massive economic problems currently facing the US, the powers-at-be would call a halt to R&D of such exotic weaponry. As Rep. Ron Paul said this week "...the problem is nobody wants to cut the American Empire, even Obama's Administration wants to increase spending overseas and increase military spending. As long as you want to run the World Empire... you cannot solve this problem."

  14. Adam Foxton
    Thumb Up


    Transparent Aluminium is just about here courtesy of 3M

    Ah, those 3M guys. Is there anything they cant' do?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    90Watts/Lb is roughyl 200 Watts/Kg (Translating from the merkin) a large shark is good for tackling man sized prey so capable of wielding a good 100Kg's say half that since the shark has to lug it around all day so, looks like the shark will only put out 10KW.

    Probably is enough for the shorter ranges one would expect a shark to operate at.

  16. Peter Simpson
    Paris Hilton

    2.5" dia diamonds?

    No, they won't be having any problems keeping *those* in stock.

    // Paris, because she'd like one

  17. TeeCee Gold badge

    @Clint Sharp

    Maybe the lads at View Askew productions got it wrong and there is a reason for the Platypus after all then?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    bucket-o-sunshine side effect

    This wins for phrase of the week. Thanks

    I can see the coppers getting this right after the military. Stops all those pesky car chases.

  19. Anonymous Coward


    Does the warranty on this gear involve a loan shark?

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