Laser weapons will show us the way

Electromagnetic weapons are some way from being feasible, and by the time they are the technology will seem rather ungainly.

Your article ‘Hot shot’ about the development of electromagnetic weapons was very interesting, but I felt that it rather lacked some points.

The scientist leading the project talked about one of the biggest advances in weapons technology, but it seems to me that while the method of delivery is different, the basic idea of sending a projectile into the side of a target at great force has not changed since the catapult.

I believe that the ‘next big things’ in weapons will not be based on projectile delivery but on the use of other technology such as lasers that can be fired at targets to disrupt or destroy them.

We are already seeing the results of such research in various anti-missile systems, and there is little doubt that the transition from defensive to offensive systems will follow rapidly once the technology is perfected.

Your article makes clear that electromagnetic weapons are some way from being feasible, and I wonder if by the time they are the technology will seem rather ungainly compared to these new types of weaponry.

James Bryant, Belfast

The research into electromagnetic weapons outlined in your article sounds very interesting for those involved. But it seems to me that the Americans have abandoned their work in the area, and even your expert admitted that it would be many, many years until such a weapon would come into service.

Perhaps even the US researchers have decided it’s a wild goose chase — and they tend to know a thing or to when it comes to military technology.

Simon Clarke Edgbaston, Birmingham