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What's Another Word For The Army's Handheld Ray Guns?

Apparently, the US Army is now testing something called a "Burke Pulser", a device that consists of two wide antennae, a piezoelectric generator, and some other stuff. It attaches to a regular rifle.


(Burke Pulser [blaster])

The Pulser takes the explosive energy released when the gun fires and converts it into pulses of electrical energy. This is done via the piezoelectric effect, which derives an electric charge when pressure is exerted on crystalline materials such as quartz, changing the balance of positive and negative ions...

The Army is currently testing the Pulser against an assortment of devices, a 555 timer, a bipolar junction transistor and a yellow light emitting diode, or LED, combined into a single target. “All these things pretty much generalize all the common electronics you’ll find in a circuit board,” Burke said.“What we’re going to do is fire at it. If the LED light stops blinking, it was defeated and if smoke comes up, it was destroyed.”

Maybe we could just call it a blaster and be done with it. The word was coined by Nictzin Dyalhis in his 1925 story When the Green Star Waned:

Well it was for me that, in obedience to Hul Jok's imperative command, I was holding my Blastor pointing ahead of me; for as I blundered full upon the monstrosity it upheaved its ugly bulk—how I do not know, for I saw no legs nor did it have wings—to one edge and would have flopped down upon me...

On the other hand, I just thought of another device that is perhaps more similar. In Frank Herbert's excellent and underread 1972 novel Hellstrom's Hive, he describes a stunwand":

He examined the odd, whiplike object. The thing was black plastic, similar in texture to the pitcher and water glass. It was about a yard long with a stubby handle indented for fingers...

Via Defense One.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 5/2/2015)

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