Israel's Iron Beam Laser Weapon
There is a flaw that Hamas discovered in the recent deluge of rockets. The flaw is that by firing large amounts of rockets simultaneously the Iron Dome can only hit so many and it is very costly. Hamas also had flown two Iranian drones over Israel. Instead of using the Iron Dome, Israel chose to fire a Patriot missile at each. To do so, cost a $3 million per drone. The drone is slightly different than a rocket, and Israeli radar, not knowing what it was, used the Patriot missile. What would happen if Hamas or Hezbollah send over a dozen of these crude drones, at $3 million a piece, that is not cost effective.
Enter the Iron Beam, a laser weapon akin to Star Trek. No rocket could ever outrun a laser that runs at the speed of light and cheap, only a few dollars a shot compared to a missile costing anywhere from five to seven figures. The only thing it needs is electricity for ammo and there is plenty of that.
The Israeli Iron Beam is solid state. mounted on trailer.They work in pairs and will shoot down rockets, mortars, artillery, that are too small for the Iron Dome. Each laser beam has a range of nearly 4.5 miles and must be fired in a straight line. It can destroy its target within five seconds. Currently, the laser beam is tens of kilowatts but plans are for a hundreds of kilowatts. With the Iron Beam, each shot costs almost nothing, and there are no real limits on the number of shots you can take and unlike missile-based systems, the Iron Beam cannot miss its target and cause collateral damage.
It is due to be operational in 2015.