Via NY Transfer Collective * All the News that Doesn't Fit
[Don't you love it the way they assume the vicitims of this weapon will be
"rioters" ?? -NY Transfer]
sent by Simon McGuinness
The Scotsman - March 2, 2005
Ray gun can drop rioters from 2km
By JAMES REYNOLDS
A RAY gun which can deliver a bout of excruciating pain to rioters from
a distance of more than two kilometres is being developed by weapons
experts in the United States.
Although the gun is meant to leave the victims unharmed, the development
has aroused fury among pain researchers, who claim their work to limit
and control pain has been hijacked to create a weapon.
They say the new technology, which is intended to replace the existing
last line of defence against rioters, for example water cannons and tear
gas, could be used for torture.
A report in the New Scientist magazine reveals that the research came to
light in documents unearthed by the Sunshine Project, an organisation
based in Texas and in Hamburg, Germany, that exposes biological weapons
developments and advances. The papers were released under US freedom of
One of the documents, a research contract between the Office of Naval
Research and the University of Florida in Gainsville, examines the
effects of what are termed Pulsed Energy Projectiles (PEPs), which fire
a laser pulse that generates a burst of expanding plasma when it comes
into contact with something solid, such as a human body.
Although it is not expected to be ready until 2007, the weapon could be
used to knock rioters clean off their feet.
A review of non-lethal weapons in 2003 by the US naval studies board,
which advises its domestic military forces, declared that PEPs produced
"pain and temporary paralysis" in tests on animals. It is believed that
the effect results from an electromagnetic pulse produced by the
expanding plasma that triggers impulses in the nerve cells.
The study aims to concentrate this trigger effect in human nerve cells,
and asks those working on the research to look for "optimal pulse
parameters to evoke peak nociceptor activation". Roughly translated,
this means maximising the amount of pain caused by the pulse.
Experiments will seek to identify how much pain can be inflicted before
the subject is injured or killed.
Dr John Wood, of University College London, is an expert in how the
human brain perceives pain and believes that the researchers should be
condemned by the international scientific community.
He said: "It could be used for torture. The researchers must be aware of
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