US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Artist's impression of an X-ray laser and a kinetic energy weapon system. These projects are both part of the US Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI, or 'Star Wars') programme. The space-based X-ray laser is powered by a nuclear explosion. This creates a massive pulse of X-ray laser energy which is directed at the target to disrupt its guidance electronics. The kinetic energy weapon uses small, high- velocity guided projectiles to intercept missiles. Both of these systems are designed for use against missiles in the boost phase, before warhead deployment. The spherical objects are deployed decoys.
Model release not required. Property release not required.