The death ray. It's a classic trope in early science fiction movies and books. It goes all the way back to HG Wells “War of the Worlds”. It's something that Nikola Tesla thought he could create. But up until the last few years, it's been speculation. There are some interesting and sometimes frightening developments in weapons of warfare lately. There was speculation about a thing called a rail gun, basically a linear accelerator that would throw an iron slug at supersonic speeds. (It turns out not to be practical right now.) 

And now there is something called Dragon fire.  

The British Royal Navy is currently testing Dragon Fire, which is a laser guided energy weapon. (Yeah, right out of sci-fi.) The photos are amazing, but is it practical? A friend of mine who is in the know on such things says that the US Navy tried it out and decided they didn't like it. The British Royal Navy thinks that they might have it deployed by 2027. 

That's not the only thing that the British Ministry of Defense is working on.
According to,
Now there is word that the British Ministry of Defense (MoD) is working on another type of directed energy weapon under its Project Ealing. Instead of a laser, this project could employ advanced radio frequency technology that would interfere with electronic circuits of drones and other aerial threats.” 

Think of it as an EMP cannon, shooting what they're calling a “directed” EMP pulse to knock out sophisticated electronics. 

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DEWs (yes, another acronym) or directed energy weapons may become the weapon dejour of the near future. According to,
potential of being used discreetly, as the radiation may not generate sound while it could be invisible if outside the visible spectrum. In addition, DEWs could be unaffected by gravity, windage, and the Coriolis force, resulting in an almost perfectly flat trajectory. The use of high-powered microwave weapons can also be hard to attribute to a particular location or even actor.” 

The idea that you could have a ground-based weapon that could scramble the electronics of a drone, for instance is very attractive. Dragon fire sounds really sexy. Who would not want to shoot something with dragon fire? I'm thinking the more practical (and humane weapon) is the EMP cannon.  

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Only time will tell which one is more useful. 

DragonFire: The Naval Laser Weapon That Looks Like a Game Changer (
DragonFire: The British Military Wants Laser Weapons to Destroy Drones | The National Interest
British Army tests directed-energy weapon system from Project Ealing (

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