The introduction of direct energy (i.e. laser) weapons is still in its infancy, but the Air Force is already working on updating its tactics and strategy. Fox News reports:
The U.S. Air Force is refining its combat strategy, tactics and concepts of operation to accommodate the rapid emergence of laser weapons, technologies which promise to alter the landscape of modern warfare and substantially expand the envelope of attack possibilities for fighter jets.
The service anticipates having aircraft and fighter jet-fired lasers in operation as soon as the early 2020s, as mobile power systems and other integral technologies continue to evolve rapidly.
Not only do laser weapons bring increased precision attacks at the speed of light to incinerate targets, but they can be scaled or adjusted to achieve the desired effect – such as total destruction, partial damage or an even smaller, more measured impact, depending upon the threat.
“Laser weapons offer warfighters opportunities for quick and precise target engagement, flexibility and lighter and more responsive support logistics,” Eva Blaylock, spokeswoman for the Air Force Research Laboratory, told Warrior Maven in a written statement.
The future of warfare is evolving rapidly, and both policy makers and military decision makers will have to keep up with rapidly changing technology if America is to keep its global military edge.