India has successfully tested a 1KW laser weaponry system, according to a report published in the Economic Times. The test was carried out by India’s Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) in August this year at Chitradurga in Karnataka state.
An official told the Economic Times that the 1KW laser system was installed on a truck, and the beam produced by the weapon system precisely hit a metal sheet located 250 meters away from it. The beam created a hole in the sheet and took just 36 seconds to accomplish this task. Indian defense minister Arun Jaitley was also present at the site, where these tests were conducted.
DRDO is India’s main defense research agency responsible for developing advanced weaponry systems for the country and making India self-reliant in terms of defense systems. The agency was created in 1958. It is headquartered in New Delhi, India, and is currently working in a variety of areas of military technology, including missiles, combat vehicles, aeronautics, instrumentation, armaments, electronics, naval systems, etc., to develop advanced, powerful weapons for the country.
For the past many years, DRDO has been trying to produce directed energy weapons (DEWs), although not much was revealed by the agency about this program. The Economic Times report reveals that DRDO’s two laboratories LASTEC and CHESS have been given the responsibility to develop the “heart of the system”—the laser beam source—which is currently purchased from Germany. Some private players, including Kalyani Group, are also trying to develop DEWs in India.
DEWs are based on high-powered lasers. They produce a powerful beam of electromagnetic energy, which can destroy aircraft, ships, missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles, and different types of weapons in the battlefield within seconds. At the time of a war, DEWs can be used to kill enemy soldiers by burning specific areas of their bodies or by making them blind.
According to defense experts, researchers are currently working on two types of DEWs: microwaves and high-powered lasers. While it is not clear whether DRDO has any plan to develop microwave weapons, the agency is definitely planning to develop more powerful laser systems able to hit targets from longer distances.
The Economic Times report also reveals that DRDO will now test a 2KW laser system against a target located 1 km away from the test weapon.