Homebuilt 200W Laser Bazooka!

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This guy is not the sharpest tool in the shed but his laser bazooka is kinda cool in a "it'll put your damn eyes out" kinda way. If you are in a hurry, skip to the 1:30 minute mark to see the laser bazooka in action.
 

Grimmda

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I've seen a lot worse videos, I find him entertaining... I'm curious if he had any burn marks on the other side of the wall when he was pointing that thing around in his... garage?
 

Parja

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I've seen a lot worse videos, I find him entertaining... I'm curious if he had any burn marks on the other side of the wall when he was pointing that thing around in his... garage?

Nah, it wasn't focused enough to burn anything when he was doing that.
 

Spidey329

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Pretty neat. With better focusing optics, he could probably actually have some real fun with it.
 

Dr. Righteous

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Cool laser projects like that are petty much illegal now because of the FAA. If you take that and shoot a beam into the air you will be accused of trying to bring down aircraft even thought that is 100% BS.
 

Powerage

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Cool laser projects like that are petty much illegal now because of the FAA. If you take that and shoot a beam into the air you will be accused of trying to bring down aircraft even thought that is 100% BS.
Except it's not BS. It's dangerous enough to fire that thing inside. Shooting it outside, even if you don't think there's anything up there, is blatantly negligent and if you don't think so, you have no fucking clue what you're talking about.
 

cyclone3d

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Except it's not BS. It's dangerous enough to fire that thing inside. Shooting it outside, even if you don't think there's anything up there, is blatantly negligent and if you don't think so, you have no fucking clue what you're talking about.

How is a small dot of light going to bring down an airplane or other aircraft unless it is high enough power to actually burn through the craft within a few seconds.. the laser would have to also follow the craft AND be able to keep focus as it moves towards/away from the laser.

Sure it is annoying, but unless you are a complete moron and freak out so much about a small dot of light that you lose your mind and manually cause the craft to crash, then there really isn't anything to worry about.

And if that is the case, maybe you shouldn't be piloting an aircraft to begin with.
 

BHenry

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Well, if the story line from Dead Space ever happens, I think we found the protagonist because that looks like a weapon straight out of Dead Space.
 

Dr. Righteous

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Cool laser projects like that are petty much illegal now because of the FAA. If you take that and shoot a beam into the air you will be accused of trying to bring down aircraft even thought that is 100% BS.
The argument they make is the laser will "blind the pilots".
It is conceivable if the plane is very low to the ground and you were in front of it. You could aim a laser directly into the cockpit and momentarily "flash blind" them.
Tell me how that is done when the plane is over 30K feet in the air and the beam can only reach the underside of the plane where it would have 0 effect.
And the most stupid suggesting anyone has the INTENT to do this in the first place. Doing so would be an act of terrorism. A kid playing with something he built does not fit the profile.
That would be like the case of that poor kid that build a digital clock from scratch and took it to school to show the teacher. The idiots at the school just naturally assumed it was a bomb and called the cops who hauled
the poor kit away in cuffs. I was the kind of kid that built projects and took them to show the teacher. If fact when I was about that kids age I but a Heathkit digital clock myself.
 

AceGoober

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If he points that at a bottle of good beer and pulls the trigger there will be a lot of people upset at him. :p

Cool contraption. I was a little worried he'd slip causing the beam would hit the camera lens.
 

evilsofa

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The argument they make is the laser will "blind the pilots".
It is conceivable if the plane is very low to the ground and you were in front of it. You could aim a laser directly into the cockpit and momentarily "flash blind" them.
Tell me how that is done when the plane is over 30K feet in the air and the beam can only reach the underside of the plane where it would have 0 effect.
And the most stupid suggesting anyone has the INTENT to do this in the first place. Doing so would be an act of terrorism. A kid playing with something he built does not fit the profile.
That would be like the case of that poor kid that build a digital clock from scratch and took it to school to show the teacher. The idiots at the school just naturally assumed it was a bomb and called the cops who hauled
the poor kit away in cuffs. I was the kind of kid that built projects and took them to show the teacher. If fact when I was about that kids age I but a Heathkit digital clock myself.

In a bit of denial, aren't you?

Man sentenced to 30 months in prison for blinding pilot
- caused vision problems that lasted through the next day
Man gets 14 years for pointing laser at helicopter
BA pilot suffers burned retina from laser, has not flown since

I can't quite believe that you really think that if you didn't intend to do something, all is forgiven because "kids are kids". You must be a big fan of the Affluenza Teen.
 

malachy

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How is a small dot of light going to bring down an airplane or other aircraft unless it is high enough power to actually burn through the craft within a few seconds.. the laser would have to also follow the craft AND be able to keep focus as it moves towards/away from the laser.

It's called "collimation." Contrary to popular belief, 'super-highly parallel light' (itty-bitty spot) is not a requirement for lasers, although the design of most lasers is such that the beam is narrow. Narrow, but not perfectly parallel. What starts as a "small dot" eventually expands to a very large circle. Lenses can be used to focus or further collimate the beam, but few consumer-grade lasers have lenses that are designed or aligned well enough to maintain a tight beam over thousands of feet. Depending on the laser, the beam could be several inches to many feet across by the time it reaches a target.

But beam-spreading makes the laser weaker and even less likely to burn a hole in the airplane, you'll say. You are correct. The danger to planes is not physical damage to the plane from the beam, but temporary (if not permanent) blindness to the pilots from the still incredibly bright, dazzling (as a function of coherence of the laser light), and the increasingly large beam of the laser.

You can see the effect of a low-powered laser in a cockpit here:

What Pilots See When You Shine a Laser Pointer at Aircraft

This kid's laser is not low-powered-- with the four beams combined, it is approximately 40,000 (forty-thousand) times more powerful than a bog-standard laser pointer. A beam 12 inches (300mm) across would be at least 2.5 times brighter than an equivalent area of sunlight, and probably more like 5 or more times brighter, as the 1120 Watts/m2 solar irradiance figure (amount of sunlight that strikes the Earth) includes infrared light, which is invisible to us.

As for Dr. Righteous's contention that the beam will only hit the underside of the plane, it depends where the laser is with relation to the plane-- often the pointer is on the ground ahead of the plane, and they strike the plane during landings and takeoffs-- the two most dangerous times of a plane's flight, as the pilots usually have manual control of the plane, are manipulating controls besides the yolk/flightstick, and are trying not to hit buildings or geography.

The range of the beam depends on the power of the laser. Wicked Lasers claim their 1W blue laser is visible to 23,335 meters at 0.25 lux, which isn't much (about the light of a full moon), but with 200x the power, you can expect around 200x the illumination at the same range.

I would expect an angle of incidence of 30 degrees to be reasonable to flash a laser through a cockpit from the ground, which would require about 60,000 feet (18,200 meters) of direct travel for a plane at 30,000 feet of altitude. Hitting the pilots directly in the eyes would not be necessary; just getting the beam onto the windshield and bouncing it around the cabin would be sufficient. And based on the Wicked specs, the beam will have diverged to a circle around 150 feet (45 meters) in diameter at 60,000 feet, making such a strike not very difficult.

If anybody doubts the blinding potential of a laser in a cockpit, feel free to drive yourself and a friend to a busy road at night, drop the friend off with a laser pointer, drive a half mile away, and then drive back toward your friend while he shines the laser toward the cabin of your car. Or don't, because you'll probably have an accident and hurt someone.
 

jonathonball

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At what point do sufficiently powerful lasers become regulated? or is that not a thing?
 

NickJames

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At what point do sufficiently powerful lasers become regulated? or is that not a thing?

It's still illegal to sell one, but nothings going to stop some kid grabbing a bunch of blu-ray burning diodes and stringing them together with a huge power supply.
 

Kaitian

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That would be like the case of that poor kid that build a digital clock from scratch and took it to school to show the teacher. The idiots at the school just naturally assumed it was a bomb and called the cops who hauled
the poor kit away in cuffs. I was the kind of kid that built projects and took them to show the teacher. If fact when I was about that kids age I but a Heathkit digital clock myself.
That "poor kid" was warned by his teacher earlier in the day that it might get him in trouble after he already showed it. Then he kept hauling it around school showing it off to get a reaction. The digital clock was never built by him and he never even spent more than 5 minutes working on it since all he did was take off the original casing and put it in a suitcase. He was never a smart kid as it was a planned hoax from the start. Mark Cuban talked to the kid over the phone and noticed that he was being coached in his responses. Again the entire thing was a hoax designed to provoke a reaction that the family wanted.

Unlike Ahmed, I actually did make a digital clock from scratch using circuitry components, a breadboard, etc when I was in school.

The clock that Ahmed "made"? Can be done in 20 seconds.
 
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How is a small dot of light going to bring down an airplane or other aircraft unless it is high enough power to actually burn through the craft within a few seconds.. the laser would have to also follow the craft AND be able to keep focus as it moves towards/away from the laser.

Sure it is annoying, but unless you are a complete moron and freak out so much about a small dot of light that you lose your mind and manually cause the craft to crash, then there really isn't anything to worry about.

And if that is the case, maybe you shouldn't be piloting an aircraft to begin with.

Just under 4,000 laser attacks on pilots occurred in 2013, and while no crashes have yet occurred as a result, pilots have been temporarily blinded and suffered real eye injuries from them.

Laser attacks on aircraft occur an average of 11 times a day, the Federal Aviation Administration says. . .
A pilot coming in for a landing at JFK two years ago radioed the tower right after an attack.
"We just got lasered up here," he said. "Two green flashes into the cockpit. It caught the first officer's eye."
A direct hit can burn the cornea, and that has put pilots in the hospital.
So far, no laser strike has been known to cause a pilot to crash an aircraft.
But the FBI fears it is only a matter of time.
 

sirgallium

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I love this kid. I've seen some of his other laser building videos and it seems that he is very smart, and does very dangerous things. Sort of like the photonic induction channel on youtube where he messes around with mains voltage and steps it up to insane voltage and amperage levels just to play with it. Here he is building his own 20kW power supply:

Here he is arcing 300Kv into an old tube TV:

Guy is absolutely insane. Does stuff that is so dangerous and yet he knows so much about electricity that he has somehow so far not injured himself or burned his house down (although his carpet is covered in burn marks). He truly is a mad scientists if you listen to him talk, very entertaining.

I love these at home scientists types who love technology so much that they just play around with state of the art high power devices that they make themselves.

This thing he made looks just like a future gun. So awesome. And it's real.
 

likeman

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he did have a 6 month gap thought he might of died but he is ok

he does very interesting stuff (should see his backup power in the basement when he overloads his 80A supply to the house sure he blown his line fuse a number of times)
 

Quix

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Has anyone broken it to this guy that Bazookas are rocket-propelled grenade launchers? This is more like a lazer cannon, in that that's exactly what it is. If you had the right optics on this you could melt through the side of a car.
 

mcravenufo

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So anticlimactic when he turned it on. I wanted it to make a sound like when the packs in Ghostbusters were turned on for the first time.
 

Powerage

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How is a small dot of light going to bring down an airplane or other aircraft unless it is high enough power to actually burn through the craft within a few seconds.. the laser would have to also follow the craft AND be able to keep focus as it moves towards/away from the laser.

Sure it is annoying, but unless you are a complete moron and freak out so much about a small dot of light that you lose your mind and manually cause the craft to crash, then there really isn't anything to worry about.

And if that is the case, maybe you shouldn't be piloting an aircraft to begin with.
Others have explained it, but this is called 'diffraction' and it means the spot gets bigger.

Think about it this way:

The plane looks small right? About the size of a small dot.

Okay, well the dot looks small up there too, right?

Therefore, the dot is the same size as the plane. Get it? If it stayed the same size the whole time, you wouldn't be able to see it.

Well, technically you'd be able to see it because you can localize a point source even though it's smaller than you're able to resolve, but trust me the math works on this one. It's fucking huge.

If you don't believe me and really want to keep talking about 'morons' feel free to look up Maxwell's equations, diffraction, and beam propagation (specifically Fraunhofer approximation or far field diffraction). There's a good book called Introduction to Fourier Optics by Joseph W. Goodman which explains it. The book is about 500 pages of explanation on why 'some moron' would freak out about a small dot.
 

STrooperTK421

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Something that I have not seen mentioned here is the other nasty biological effects that lasers in this frequency range can cause. Blue lasers are DANGEROUS given what they can do to your eyes and what they can do to you if you get hit with one powerful enough on the skin.

Look it up. Don't FUCK with powerful blue (or really any) laser if you do not know what you are doing.
 

sfsuphysics

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Some DLPs use xenon arc lamps, some use lasers, some use LEDs.
Yeah the width of the beam as it came out made me think it was more like an LED than a laser, granted they can get hot too and if you focus with a lens definitely can set stuff on fire.
 

Mister E

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It wasn't that impressive for 200 watts. I expected to see stuff getting obliterated.
 

DocSavage

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It wasn't that impressive for 200 watts. I expected to see stuff getting obliterated.
200 watts is nearly the amazing amount of energy used by 3 standard 60-watt light bulbs. I'd be more afraid of some people's bathroom lighting if it was all efficiently directed and focused :D
 

Parja

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200 watts is nearly the amazing amount of energy used by 3 standard 60-watt light bulbs. I'd be more afraid of some people's bathroom lighting if it was all efficiently directed and focused :D

But LEDs put out about 8-10x the light energy per watt vs. incandescent. Most of an incandescent's power is wasted as heat. So 200W worth of LEDs is more like ~30 60-Watt light bulbs.
 

DocSavage

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But LEDs put out about 8-10x the light energy per watt vs. incandescent. Most of an incandescent's power is wasted as heat. So 200W worth of LEDs is more like ~30 60-Watt light bulbs.
True. Probably don't want to stare into that laser cannon. But in terms of pure energy, 200w is kind of low.
 

sfsuphysics

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But LEDs put out about 8-10x the light energy per watt vs. incandescent. Most of an incandescent's power is wasted as heat. So 200W worth of LEDs is more like ~30 60-Watt light bulbs.
(That guy moment)...

technically incorrect, the incandescent will put out the same amount of light energy per watt as an LED (in fact probably more), just most of it is infrared radiation which you refer to as "heat" but it is in fact light. Just not terribly useful at helping illuminate a room, however it's quite useful when used as a warming agent (reptile enclosure, chicken hatchery, fast food warmer, etc). And the only real reason I bring this up (not just to sound like a douche) is that infrared lasers are actually very useful and powerful, many cutting lasers are infrared.

/(That guy moment)
 

daglesj

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I kind of like how he braces for recoil.

Maybe more lenses?
 
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