Is solar weapons effective?

The idea of ​​using the energy of the sun as a weapon for the first time It occurred to a man, perhaps, back in the Stone Age, but for the first time it was embodied by none other than the famous Archimedes. Residents Syracuse, of whom he was a citizen, were for him for this grateful much more than for the exact value of the number “pi” and calculating the volume of displaced fluid combined. But it was so … In 215 BC e. King Syracuse Hieron II at the age of 90 passed away, transferring power to his grandson Hieronymus. During the palace intrigues he headed for the separation with hitherto friendly Rome and soon concluded an agreement with Carthage, which, as you know, should to be destroyed. The logical result of such a policy was the Second The Punic War of the Carthaginians with the Romans, which began in 218 dong. e. In 212 BC e. Roman general Mark Claudius Marcellus besieged Syracuse from the sea and land. Is solar weapons effective?Photo from open sources of 60 quinquires (heavy ships with five rows of oars) approached the city walls at a distance of flight arrows and archers with slingers began to shower their defenders deadly shells. However, the city helped to defend itself Archimedes, who launched everything that he could conceive, – giant iron paws cling to 45-meter ships and knock over them, catapults were thrown by monstrous boulders, and the most unusual – with with the help of a huge mirror, the scientist set fire to the Roman quinquires! Having lost several ships in such an unusual way, Marcellus took fleet away, but that didn’t help either – 75-year-old Archimedes built another mirror and continued to let out the deadly sunbeams. True, the townspeople didn’t feel any better: the scientist the assault on Syracuse, he could not save him from the siege, so in the end the city fell. Archimedes himself was killed by a simple legionnaire in a mess street battle. Pros and Cons During the Middle Ages a strong blow to the possibility of using mirrors in battle was inflicted by the French philosopher and mathematician Rene Descartes, in his “Diopter” convincingly proved that it is impossible to set fire to the ship with the help of sunlight: “Since the Sun is not a light point, but a disk with a visible angular diameter 32, then any point of the mirror reflects not a beam, but a cone rays coming from different points of the solar disk, having at apex angle of 32 degrees. Incendiary mirror, the diameter of which less than a hundredth of the distance between it and the place where the sun’s rays are focused … even if it were polished by an angel, cannot … heat that place more than the rays, emitted directly by the sun. ” Photo from open sources Restored Archimedes reputation as the world’s first combat laser operator the french naturalist and inventor Georges Buffon (world famous for his work “Natural History”), who built the system in 1747 of 128 flat mirrors. With its help, he not only ignited tarred board at a distance of 50 meters, but also managed to melt lead and silver. At the end of the XX century there was a man who decided once again to put experience, so to speak, in kind. This time it turned out to be Greek mechanical engineer Ioannis Sakas. Typing in November 1973 70 assistants, he placed them on the shore of the bay with shield-shaped mirrors measuring 91 by 50 centimeters. At the command of Sakas, assistants raised mirrors several times, trying to focus sunny bunnies on a boat loaded with tar. Finally when the rays managed to combine at one point, the boat in this place was smoking and three minutes later flared up! Similar experience (true, on land) 30 September 2005, students and professors of Massachusetts spent Institute of Technology. True, things did not go as smoothly as Greeks: students could not point all 129 square mirrors purchased for the experiment. Soon the sky the clouds tightened, and the continuation of the experiment became impossible. The second attempt was a complete success – this time the professors We decided to do without bum-students and did everything ourselves. Via a mirror giving a cruciform “target bunny on a Roman layout ship, they alternately pointed in one place all 129 mirrors, pre-draped with fabric (so that the light of one mirror does not prevented to direct another). The tests were successful Photos from open sources Photos from open sources Photos from open sources Photo from open sources Finally, when everything was focused, scientists threw off the covers. A few minutes from mock red oak poured thick smoke and then in place focusing flame erupted. After admiring the work of his hands and putting out the fire, scientists discovered that their giant solar the “hare” burned through a 2.54 cm thick board. In general, and On the whole, the experiments carried out at different times convincingly proved: Archimedes could well use a system of mirrors of their own design. Shine and poverty heliograph Today is a prototype of the invention of the great Greek used exclusively for peaceful purposes. Signal Mirror (or, scientifically, heliograph) is included in many emergency rescue sets of military, travelers and athletes. Flash a heliograph on a sunny cloudless day is detected from an airplane, flying at an altitude of 1-2 kilometers, from a distance of 20-25, and in some occasions even up to 40 kilometers! Moreover, a signal mirror it is possible to give signals even at night in the full moon or in the foggy haze. However, the colossal energy of the Sun haunts the military, according to essentially disappearing in vain. Calculations show that the brightness of signal bunny when the angle of the sun is 90 “is without small seven million candles, and the temperature in the center focused light output can reach several thousand degrees! It’s easy to imagine what can do one like that. a mirror placed in orbit – the reflected rays of the sun easily will melt not only the tank armor or the wall of the bunker, but also the covers intercontinental missile mines. A group of such satellites can burn an entire city. And this despite the fact that for military will not spend a “shot” energy a cent – all for free give our luminary. Of course, “fighting bunnies” are not absolute weapon: firstly, thick smoke or fog will weaken them action, and secondly, why the winners scorched and caked from terrible heat land of the vanquished? But as gigantic projectors or heaters, such projects, perhaps, have more real future. Evgeny VASILIEV

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