For decades, microwave weapons have begun to be seen as a serious military threat-prompting the Department of Defense to issue a request to equip American soldiers with detectors in response to the so-called “increasing threats on the battlefield.”
These weapons, some of which cause a burning sensation, have been considered for use in the United States. In June, a federal policeman asked for a truck the size of Microwave heat ray Dispelled the protests that “the life of black people is also fate”.Trump administration considers using the same equipment Oppose asylum seekers In 2018.
Now, the Department of Defense wants American soldiers to be equipped with microwave weapon detectors.This was made on December 9th Contract solicitation For “low-cost, low-weight, and small-size wearable radio frequency (RF) weapon exposure detectors”, it specifies high-frequency microwaves from the Defense Health Program of the Ministry of Defense.
The Ministry of Defense’s interest in detecting microwave weapons comes from Israel, China and Russia According to reports, they are inventing their own version of microwave heat rays”Active rejection system“This was pioneered by the United States twenty years ago. The United States continues to develop this technology: An Air Force Research Laboratory is launching one”Anti-Swarm Electromagnetic Weapon,” called THOR, bombing drones in flight. Navy microwave weapon prototype Installed on the standard gun rack It was unveiled in 2018.The need to disable drones becomes more real Autumn war Between Azerbaijan and Armenia, the former won Drone fleet Destroy the defense of the latter.
Then, in December, a new report indicated that these weapons may cause nerve damage.National Academy of Sciences, Academy of Engineering, and School of Medicine Critical report It is suggested that these weapons are the “most reasonable” explanation for the puzzling nerve damage of at least 15 Cuban diplomats and their families 2016 and 2017.
“No known pattern [radiofrequency] Injury-guided diagnosis, difficult to identify [microwave] Injuries from other common diseases and injuries (such as heat stroke),” said the Department of Defense’s microwave weapon detector Procedure request, Closed in about two weeks. “The transient nature of RF energy exacerbates this ambiguous symptom. Without sensors, it may not be possible to obtain residual evidence of a radio frequency attack.”
The Department of Defense declined to comment on the probe contract. However, experts contacted by BuzzFeed News stated that the emerging military interest in microwave weapons may have stemmed from the emergence of drone jamming weapons and NASEM reports. They added that this technology deserves attention as a new battlefield issue in the 21st century.
Andrew Wood of the Australian Center for Electromagnetic Biological Effects Research said in an email: “I think that although the United States has never deployed these weapons in a war zone, people are worried that other participants will do it.” He added that they are easy to hide in Behind the curtain, so, for example, American military personnel who feel the burning sensation may need a detector to determine if others are pointing microwave weapons at them.
Marloes Eeftens, an environmental epidemiologist at the Swiss Institute of Tropical and Public Health, said that the contract’s demand for wearable sensors that can fit in a rifle magazine bag and can be clipped to a vest also shows that people have accidental contact with military proving ground staff. Microwave concerns. Send BuzzFeed news via email.
Although they may feel hot when they are in a “heat-like” weapon beam, Eeftens warns that it is difficult to determine whether the concentrated microwave field is to be blamed. “You leave no traces when you come out, so it is difficult to objectively determine whether someone has actually been in contact and how much they have been in contact,” she said.
Paul Elliot of Magnetic Science Inc. in Acton, Massachusetts, told BuzzFeed News that there are other types of radio frequency wave detectors besides the microwave described in the Department of Defense contract tender. They are generally suitable for people who use electronic products.
“What we sell is the size of a brick, or at least half a brick,” he said. “You can’t wear it.”
Although high-temperature-induced microwaves, like those found in ovens, can cook food and cause burns, does the nervous system Health impact May be caused by weaker functions Long-term lack of evidence And subject to various Conspiracy theories about 5G phones seen today.
U.S. Air Force experiments set limits Human microwave exposure During the study of electromagnetic pulses produced by nuclear explosions in the 1970s.These standards have been widely adopted since then, but 2018 NATO Technical Report Calling these limits scientifically unreasonable, and saying that they are not supported by any experiments showing injuries.French researcher’s report last year Low-power pulsed microwaves are linked to cancer and behavioral changes in mice Raise the issue of health effects again, Especially now considering the use of THOR and other systems to combat drones on the spot.
“I don’t think there will be major safety issues for people in the beam, but on the other hand, the amount of research on the biological effects of such pulses is limited,” said Ken Foster, a bioengineer at the University of Pennsylvania. “If the military wants to deploy these weapons, they’d better do security research.”