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"...if you want to know what your future looks like, don't waste your time on Analog; read Time magazine. We are already saturated in the future. "
- Peter Watts

Flying Crowbars  
  Kinetic energy weapons deployed from space.  

I think human beings have always known that you have a special ally when you are fighting people who are below you.

"Project Thor was recommended by a strategy analysis group back in the eighties," Curtis said. "Flying crowbars." He sketched rapidly. "You take a big iron bar. Give it a rudimentary sensor, and a steerable vane for guidance. Put bundles of them in orbit. To use it, call it down from orbit, aimed at the area you're working on. It has a simple brain, just smart enough to recognize what a tank looks like from overhead. When it sees a tank silhouette, it steers toward it."
From Footfall, by Larry Niven (w/J. Pournelle).
Published by Ballantine in 1985
Additional resources -

Pournelle described a weapons system like this in 1964; he published a more complete description in 1975. He describes it this way:

The basic weapon system consists of an orbiting element some 20 to 40 feet long. It requires a GPS receiver to locate itself; a means of taking it out of orbit; an atmospheric guidance system, such as a means of changing its center of gravity (moving weights, small fins, etc.), and a communication system to give it a target and activate the system. No warhead is wanted or needed. Thor will impact a target area at about 12,000 feet per second; that is sufficient kinetic energy to destroy most hard targets, with minimum collateral damage and of course no fall-out. Achievable accuracy has been estimated at ten to twenty feet CEP (circular error of probability).

Read more at JerryPournelle.com.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Footfall
  More Ideas and Technology by Larry Niven (w/J. Pournelle)
  Tech news articles related to Footfall
  Tech news articles related to works by Larry Niven (w/J. Pournelle)

Flying Crowbars-related news articles:
  - 'ETs Attacked Me With Meteorites' - Bosnian Man
  - Joint Precision Airdrop System (JPADS)

Articles related to Weapon
TIKAD Armed Drone Ready To Fight
LaWS Laser Can Take Out Rogue Drones
Keith Laumer's Bolo Autonomous Tanks Right On Schedule
Railguns For Surface Ships

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