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The ADS (Active Denial System) is an American non lethal weapon

The U.S. military presented in January at a demonstration at Moody Air Force Base (Georgia), a new nonlethal weapon that emits microwaves in order to disarm opponents and enemies disperse without causing physical damage. Called Active Denial System (ADS ), the arms causes a feeling of unbearable heat in the skin, forcing the enemy to drop their weapons and retreat.

The equipment can reach a distance of just over 450 meters, range 15 times higher than the traditional non-lethal weapons . The microwaves emitted by the electromagnetic device military penetrate only 0.4 mm in human skin. Do not cause injuries, but cause immense discomfort, the feeling of a heat of 55 °C, which gives the impression that the clothes are about to ignite.

Possible usesEdit

The system should be installed on ships, planes and helicopters and used in routine security operations or combating terrorism.

An ADS in an armored truck

U.S. officials believe the technology could also be useful in areas of intense conflict such as Afghanistan or Iraq. Over the past decade, it invested 40 million dollars in the development of ADS. It is expected that the systematic production of new weapon has begun only in 2010.


The ADS is working with Microwaves one Frequency 95 Gigahertz associated with an Antenna can be directed to human or other targets at a distance of more than 500 meters. Household microwave ovens operate at 2.45 GHz, however . The votes of ADS electromagnetic radiation has a much higher energy density, the energy penetrates but only about 0.4 mm into the skin. The high energy radiation heats the water molecules in the skin within seconds to about 55 degrees, which is perceived by the challenged person as a pain stimulus and has to animate for flight. According to proponents should you encounter any permanent injury.


ADS has been in the 1980s by the U.S. Air Force (Air Force Research Laboratory ) and the Joint NonLethal Weapons Directorate at a cost of more than 51 million U.S. dollars developed. Approximately nine million U.S. dollars were the volume of investment in testing on humans, with which we began in 2000 at the Kirtland Air Force Base . The ADS is now managed by the arms company Raytheon On behalf of the Pentagon developed. In the future, which are currently due to the size and mass or reduced on vehicles fitted ADS systems further. The plan is the development of custom systems for use at sea and Rebellion control from the air. By Silent Protection System Raytheon offers a stripped down version of ADS with a reduced range on the market.


For 2006 was the use of ADS systems in Iraq planned. According to a statement from Michael Wynne, the aims for the U.S. Air Force competent Secretary of State, ADS will now only been tested in the U.S.. According to the Sandia National Laboratories ADS systems are also to protect plants from the U.S. Department of Energy be used.


800px-Active Denial System closeup

Close-up of the ADS system

Brett Wagner extended from the California Center for Strategic Studies in July 2006, a petition against the also " Rumsfeld 's ray gun " called a radiation weapons . According to Wagner, they have violated a stand against the Geneva Convention is because the only goal of ADS is the generation of pain. Also due to the severe pain lasting trauma can occur, so they should be classified according to Wagner as instruments of torture . The procurement and the presence of such a system would therefore allow continued use of the weapon as an instrument of torture at least.

Critics point could continue on the way to impractical conditions for tests in which subjects wear any glasses or contact lenses and wear have no metal objects like coins, keys, buttons or zippers with him or not.

Neil Davison, an expert on non-lethal weapons by the University of Bradford, England, points out that virtually no radiation dose to be checked for persons whose freedom of movement, for example, restricted in a crowd is .

As Edward Hammond of Sunshine Project found out about after the input of information act occurred in earlier tests, when used in the vicinity of settlements, water surfaces and soils specific risks that can use the weapon alarming. Even sweaty or wet clothing can contribute to increased impact and cause skin burns.

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