What; No laser rifles?!

7 posts / 0 new
Last post
OneTrikPony OneTrikPony's picture
What; No laser rifles?!
Beam weapons bug me cause their range is too short to make me care. I get that particle beams and plasma throwers will have short range and be hard to aim which makes them uninteresting as military weapons. But... pistol size rail guns that can produce rifle type muzzle energies demonstrate that the battery/capacitor tech is on par to produce multiple Kilowatts per second so... why no Laser rifles?

Mea Culpa: My mode of speech can make others feel uninvited to argue or participate. This is the EXACT opposite of what I intend when I post.

Thampsan Thampsan's picture
Re: What; No laser rifles?!
That is a good question, but I suspect it is because the sort of power sources and size constraints for really powerful beam weaponry make plasma rifles the biggest thing we have currently. I mean the laser-beam weaponry in game at the moment isn't the worst, but it does lack a punch. The Orion's Arm project has some interesting thoughts on lasers; http://www.orionsarm.com/eg-article/48fddc50c8880 and the article overview discusses variable beam lasers, with how much accuracy - i'm not sure, because of my lack of knowledge in the field of science. Perhaps one of our more knowledgable members could throw together some numbers regarding energy output of EP nuclear batteries, versus the size and energy cost of a gamma-ray laser.
OneTrikPony OneTrikPony's picture
Re: What; No laser rifles?!
Thampsan wrote:
That is a good question, but I suspect it is because the sort of power sources and size constraints for really powerful beam weaponry make plasma rifles the biggest thing we have currently. I mean the laser-beam weaponry in game at the moment isn't the worst, but it does lack a punch. The Orion's Arm project has some interesting thoughts on lasers; http://www.orionsarm.com/eg-article/48fddc50c8880 and the article overview discusses variable beam lasers, with how much accuracy - i'm not sure, because of my lack of knowledge in the field of science. Perhaps one of our more knowledgable members could throw together some numbers regarding energy output of EP nuclear batteries, versus the size and energy cost of a gamma-ray laser.
IIRC the orions arm dude (or at least the dude that did the lasers for orions arm) put some serious skull sweat and calculation into it. I've seen his ideas elsewhere, possibly on [u]atomic rockets[/u] or [u]rocketpunk manifesto[/u] and he agrees with you. As long as you've got batteries that will store and discharge enough energy fast enough then you can have laser rifles. That's my point; if you got batteries that will make a rail gun you should be able to make a laser rifle, Right?

Mea Culpa: My mode of speech can make others feel uninvited to argue or participate. This is the EXACT opposite of what I intend when I post.

Thampsan Thampsan's picture
Re: What; No laser rifles?!
I know, i'm not necessarily calling into question whether the amount of power can be put out, but what sort of lifespan would said batteries would have, how efficient are the superconductor cooling systems. Etc. In my book I think there should be laser rifles as well, and in my opinion there probably are - under lock and key or as a result of TITAN creation. But one can only imagine that they would do damage; as implied by the Orions Arm article equivalent to a rifle shot for the 10kj .30cal equiv. A light pistol shot for the .9mm equiv. It's the ammo and rate-of-fire i'm curious about. Also i'm unclear as to what effect the colour of the beams would have and what sort of power usage that sort of thing would require. Your thoughts?
Prior Prior's picture
Re: What; No laser rifles?!
I guess because they are trying to keep the technology as plausible as possible. There are many problems to get past before a very portable laser weapon becomes a reality; focal length of the beam, variable optics to make that possible, and of course, keeping the whole unit cool, which is an issue with current laser technology.
"I do seem to remember a process where you people ask me questions and I give you answers, and then I ask you questions and you give me answers, and that's the way we find out things. I think I read that in a manual somewhere."
OneTrikPony OneTrikPony's picture
Re: What; No laser rifles?!
As to color the most efficient ranges are Infra red or blue-green. (unless you have the super tech to produce massive amounts of light in what ever portion of the spectrum you please (like the orions arm high tech notes.) As for variable optics and cooling. Transhumans have already beaten that in EP. Re; the Laser Pulser and the Cybernetic Hand Laser. It's kinda weird to me that if they can size an effective laser to be implantable in a biomorph they don't use the same tech to make rifles with a 1000m medium range. [edit]Here's some other amazing stuff they can do in EP that makes the absence of laser weapons conspicuous; Create a plasma chanel 300 meters long (in vacuum) without expending anything other than battery power. the plasma rifle magnetically accelerate a conductive projectile to mach 6+ (2050m/s) without that magnetic pulse pulling the wrist watch off the guy standing next to the weapon. produce a beam of particles that is powerful enough to make solid materials explode but not damage the operator with back-scatter radiation.

Mea Culpa: My mode of speech can make others feel uninvited to argue or participate. This is the EXACT opposite of what I intend when I post.

Gee4orce Gee4orce's picture
Re: What; No laser rifles?!
So…change it. Your arguments seem reasonable to me. There we go, that was easy.