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US NAVY Investing in Laser Machine Guns

Okay maybe these aren't exactly the types of laser machine guns Dr. Evil would drool over, but the U.S. Navy has teamed up with BAE Systems and Boeing to develop advanced machine guns combining the high-precision technology of lasers with the lethal force of machine guns. Pictured above is BAE System's Mk 38 Mod 2 Machine Gun, the weapon that is going to be equipped with solid state laser technology.

Since the current prototype that BAE and Boeing have developed only tops out at a disappointing laser blast of 10 kilowatts, the device is hardly considered militarily effective. Not even getting close to the required 100 kilowatt threshold to be considered viable, this means the U.S. Navy probably won't be firing deadly laser blasts out to sea anytime soon.

Despite the laser's short comings in potency, the modified Mk 38 is still a force to be reckoned with. Rather than a single concentrated laser, the weapon features both technologies that can work independently or together. This means the not-so-deadly laser can be used to identify and lock on to targets that will be bombarded with the unquestionably deadly 180 rounds per minute machine gun. Other than the $2.8 million contract awarded back in March, no additional information has been given about expected costs or production dates.