by Guest Writer Gary “Flyboy” Wright
I’ve been thinking about doing a piece on future warfare and weapons for a while now, and after re-watching some old sci-fi movie favorites, it made me think about it once again. I have always been fascinated by futuristic stuff, be it robots or computers. From an early age I was into science, technology and military. So, blend all these together and you have futuristic military weapons and units.
This started off as just a personal reference rant, but it became more, how shall I put it, “extended” than I planned — therefore I thought it may make a good article and others might like to read it. The content here is made up mostly of fact, some speculation and my own visions of the future. So, if something seems not quite right to you, 1) don’t blame me, and 2) wait… it may happen! And just remember, if something here is my idea and it hasn’t been made yet, but is so in the future… remember you heard it from me first!
To The Future
The future of warfare looks to be quite amazing. Years ago, films such as The Terminator, with robots and lasers seemed like only a fantasy. Now though, in 2007, it is slowly becoming a very possible reality.
The U.S. military is developing laser weaponry, presumably to make ballistic weapons obsolete. This would have its advantages, as there would be no individual “rounds” to manufacture, and no metal casings clogging up the place — meaning less cost and being more environmentally-friendly in the long-run. Another, more pressing advantage, would be that things such as wind and humidity would not affect the performance of such “projectiles” and the time it takes for the shot to hit the target from pulling the trigger to impact would be almost instantaneous. One-shot kills and clean, almost clinical deaths would also minimize ammo loss and friendly fire, as well as less suffering for the people at the target — surely one in the eye for would-be critics and anti-war protestors.
Lasers have been in use for years, but only as target rangefinders and designators, and not as an actual weapon itself. Also, low-powered lasers are used by the U.S. military for “wargames”. In this advanced training, lasers are used to shoot targets instead of just firing blank ammo and hoping you get a “hit”. Each target has a laser detector set built-in and it flashes a light or sounds a buzzer when a laser is detected, resulting in an “impact”. Each type of weapon has its own laser code so that you can’t destroy a tank with a rifle, for example, but in contrast a tank can take out almost anything.
Tanks will no longer fire the more traditional explosive rounds, but all will be kinetic energy weapons. This means that instead of relying on high amounts of explosive to do the job, a penetration dart made of high-density metal such as depleted uranium would be driven through armor by inertia alone. Tank destroyers and anti-tank weapons of all fields including air-to-ground and surface-to-surface would also use this kinetic energy method. This time however, they would be in the form of missiles, but again using a metal penetration dart in place of an explosive warhead. This type of unit would be driven at hyper-velocity using a rocket motor capable of supersonic speeds.