England is going to have the Olympics this summer, which means the entire island is going to be converted into Air Strip One for the duration. On top of the regular police, there will be 13,500 military personnel deployed, and they will have the use of a Long Range Acoustical Device (LRAD). According to Reuters (5/11/12), the LRAD is basically a torture device using the medium of sound:
The LRAD (Long Range Acoustic Device), made by U.S. company LRAD Corporation, can be mounted on the side of a ship or on the top of a vehicle. Some versions are roughly the same size and shape as a dustbin lid.Oh joy, another toy from the Homeland Security corporate welfare state. Note that it's use is supposedly in lieu of "harmful or deadly force", and it's finding a lot of use in quelling protesters in various countries.
It can generate noises up to around 150 decibels, similar to a gunshot, and has a maximum range of 3 km or 1.8 miles.
The device can also emit a warning alarm that sounds like a police siren and "potentially prevents the use of harmful or deadly force", LRAD says on its website.
So you won't get shot -- maybe. Oh goody.
"Non-lethal" doesn't mean nice. This SOB is a nasty one. From the Wiki:
... being within 100 metres (330 ft) of the LRAD is extremely painful, and that it was designed for use in short bursts at 300 metres (980 ft), to give targeted people a headache. He said that "you definitely don't want to be" within 100 m; and, that the device will cause permanent auditory damage.Here's the LRAD being used by heavily-militarized police in the G20 protests in Pittsburgh:
LRAD officials deny such common uses, claiming that the device is not a weapon, rather it is a "directed-sound communications system", and that it can damage hearing at 15 metres (49 ft).
Really however there isn't any doubt that this can be and has been used as a weapon. Its makers are desperate for foreign contracts, and the palming off of this as an enhanced loudspeaker is just a smokescreen.
And as you might have imagined, our friends at LRAD Corporation have figured out a way to mount the LRAD on a drone aircraft. From the company's website:
The LRAD (Long Range Acoustic Device) family of products can be operated remotely across an IP network giving USV/UAV operators the important capability of communicating to targets from a safe location. ... LRAD broadcasts high intensity focused acoustic output to clearly communicate critical information, instructions and warnings well beyond 500 meters.(USV=Unmanned Surface Vehicles. UAV=Unmanned Aviation Vehicles.)
Through the use of multi-lingual voice commands and deterrent tones, large safety zones can be created while determining the intent and influencing the behavior of targeted threats.
In other words, someone 1,000 miles away will be able to breakup up protests using internet-controlled robot aircraft-mounted sound cannons.
I feel safer already!