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10 Weapons That Belong in Science Fiction

by Patrick Welsh
fact checked by Rachel Jones

People often talk about how cool a Lightsaber from Star Wars is or how convenient it would be to have a Phaser from the Star Trek universe. Imagine being able to paralyze, kill, or vaporize enemies in real life. However, only a few of us realize that humans already have some incredible real-life weapons that have been paired with technology that would make any sci-fi movie better.

Take a look at these cutting-edge weapons, some of which have seen combat. A few of these are game-changers.

Related: Top 10 Nonlethal Weapons That Are Actually Lethal

10 CornerShot

At the Range: Corner Shot CSM

Wouldn’t it be incredible if you could point a gun at someone without revealing even a single hair on your head? CornerShot is the way to go!

CornerShot is a corner-firing module that can vastly improve the functionality of any weapon attached to it. Created by Corner Shot Holdings LLC, it allows the user to deploy a range of deadly and non-lethal attachments against targets while remaining concealed/in cover around a corner. The back section controls a swiveling front piece with a conventional weapon and camera, providing footage to a tiny screen. It also allows the trigger to be pulled without having to expose your fingers.

The CornerShot system, according to its official website, is meant to allow users to fire targets from the left and right, up and down. It can quickly switch to each of these firing positions without users removing hands from the weapon. In unexpected engagement scenarios, this reduces response time and improves accuracy.

You may think that CornerShot is more of an accessory than a weapon. But, its effectiveness has made it a vital asset to the military forces of several countries across the world, including India, Indonesia, and China.

9 Quantum Stealth

Quantum Stealth “invisibility cloak” can conceal people and entire buildings

Do you ever wish that the Cloak of Invisibility from the Harry Potter series existed in real life? Quantum Stealth is as close as it gets, for now.

Quantum Stealth, often known as the “Invisibility Cloak,” is a material developed by Hyperstealth Biotechnology Corp that gives the illusion of invisibility to its users.

Hyperstealth Biotechnology Corp CEO Guy Cramer said that Quantum Stealth could eliminate the visual, anti-infrared (night vision), and shadow of the wearer. Quantum Stealth operates similar to fiber optic cable technology in that it bends light waves around it, so the wearer is hidden from view.

According to Cramer, this advanced material is ideal for soldiers who conduct daily operations to escape the enemy’s notice. Not only that, but users can theoretically use this cutting-edge technology to conceal planes, tanks, submarines, and even an entire building. Even more impressive is that the material does not need battery energy, projectors, or cameras.

Excellent! Now you can escape those recurring awkward situations where you meet someone you know whose name you forget. It won’t help you hide from your problems, though, so tough luck.

8 FN F2000

The FN F2000 may be a conventional firearm rather than a futuristic weapon, but it certainly looks like it belongs in the future.

Bullpup designs and steel materials give the gun an adequately sci-fi-looking appearance. For decades, the FN F2000 has been a popular choice for media like video games and movies, frequently requiring little to no modification to meet the criteria of an advanced-looking firearm.

The F2000 is a fully automatic, gas-operated, ambidextrous bullpup rifle created by F.N. Herstal in Belgium. The selector toggle is a revolving disc placed below the trigger taken from the P90 personal defense weapon’s safety system and trigger mechanism. The firearm can be set to fire in semiautomatic or automatic mode, keeping you ready for whatever situation you might be in.

7 The Active Denial System (ADS)

Tear gas and water cannons are old news; meet ADS for your crowd dispersion solution.

The Active Denial System (ADS)—aka heat ray—is a non-lethal weapon that causes immediate discomfort, dispersing crowds and allowing authorities to reestablish order quickly when deployed. ADS is the first non-lethal, directed-energy counter-personnel device with a range that exceeds any other non-lethal weapon now in use—seven football fields, to be exact.

The U.S. Department of Defense Non-Lethal Weapons Program claims that ADS offers more safety than kinetic-based systems, which have a higher chance of causing harm when used. In contrast, ADS only produces instant and extreme discomfort without lasting effects. ADS gives you the sensation of directly facing hot ovens or grills being opened up.

Despite its many benefits, ADS is not without criticism. According to experts, the weapon is “too frightening,” and victims can become confused and stay in the area. People also believe it is overly indiscriminate and vulnerable to exploitation.

6 XM-25

XM25 25mm Counter Defilade Target Engagement (CDTE) System

XM-25: a weapon made with a futuristic vision, but it fell short of expectations.

The XM-25 Counter Defilade Target Engagement System—the Punisher—is a programmed airburst grenade launcher designed to strike enemy forces hiding behind cover. The United States Army utilized the weapon in the Afghanistan war in 2010. It has also appeared in several video games, including Call of Duty and Battlefield.

To take out hidden enemies, the user can make the programmable grenades fly within a door or entryway and explode just inside, splattering devastating shrapnel on everyone within. It’s also capable of blowing apart windows and bunkers, as well as bursting over trenches and foxholes.

XM-25 was undoubtedly an ambitious project with its futuristic function. However, it failed to deliver on many of the promises made. It was heavy and only functional in limited situations. Not to mention that the weapon was removed from Afghanistan in 2013 after a soldier was hurt attempting to load two grenades simultaneously.

Despite redesign attempts, the army formally ended the XM-25 development program on July 24, 2018. Officials from the Army aim to produce a better Precision Grenadier System that would perform the same aggressive functions as the XM-25.

5 The Mosquito

The Anti-Teenager Security Device – The Gadget Show #TechMeBackTuesday

Taking aside the questionable name, the Mosquito is an innovative machine that emits high-frequency sound to dissuade loitering, primarily by younger people. Howard Stapleton created the device in 2005 after his then-17-year-old daughter was harassed by a group of teenage boys while shopping for milk. He estimated the frequency of the “Mosquito” using his children as test subjects.

Some people support the Mosquito because it provides a haven for the community against severe anti-social conduct and youth annoyance. However, it’s hardly surprising that the machine has sparked debate about human rights and discrimination. Some even see it as a sonic weapon that only succeeds in dehumanizing youngsters and teenagers. A few groups are also concerned about the devices’ potential detrimental effects on persons with autism. Newborns and toddlers may also be a victim of prolonged exposure (since their parents cannot hear the sound).



This one is for the Star Trek fans. PEP is like to be hit by a Star Trek Phaser set to stun.

PEP stands for “pulsed energy projectile”; it’s an infrared laser capable of stopping someone in their tracks by inducing excruciating pain or paralysis similar to being hit with a taser.

The U.S. military designed the weapon for riot control, and it is believed to function across distances of up to 2 kilometers (1.24 miles). Due to its size, it has to be installed on a vehicle. Even though it was developed as a non-lethal weapon, it turns out that PEP can also kill people.

One critic points out that PEP can cause severe pain and cold burn sensations without leaving any physical trace on the subject. The public was concerned that the so-called non-lethal weapon would be utilized as a torture device. It’s the main reason why there are not many details published about it, and the army ended the program around the late 2000s. Anti-climatic, isn’t it?

3 Boeing Laser Avenger

Boeing Laser Avenger

Imagine how great it would be if a technology existed that allowed you to destroy aircraft without exposing your location. Well, don’t imagine it, because that technology is already here.

The Boeing Laser Avenger is an infrared laser system placed atop a Boeing Combat Systems AN/TWQ-1 Avenger combat vehicle. It was created to destroy unmanned aircraft efficiently.

The Laser Avenger is intended to overcome the issue with traditional technology, which frequently reveals the shooter’s location when attempting to shoot down a drone. With the Boeing Laser Avenger, you can destroy them while remaining undetectable to the human eye. The Laser Avenger relies on complicated tracking technology to detect drones traveling at low and medium altitudes.

Although the lasers used are very expensive and useless as weapons against humans, they are tremendously effective against electronics and aircraft equipment. Even yet, as long as drones transporting bombs or ammunition are a concern, the U.S. Army may use these laser weapons to neutralize them.

2 EF-88

If you’ve ever wondered what an ideal rifle looks like, the EF-88 could be worth a look.

EF-88 or enhanced F88 Austeyr rifle is a remarkable weapon with great accuracy, lethality, ergonomics, adaptability, and dependability. The gun has improved close combat and overall warfare performance over its predecessor, the F88, mainly due to its mounting possibilities for auxiliary equipment.

Enhanced day sights, image intensifiers, thermal imaging sights, front grips (with bipod), forward grips, weapon stabilizers, visual illumination devices, one-hour offset rails, and laser-aiming illumination and range systems are among the accessories available.

What do you think? Is it up to your exacting standards for a superb rifle?

1 Distributed Gain High Energy Laser Weapon System

US awards Boeing, General Atomics contract to develop powerful laser weapon

We’ve arrived at the ultimate boss: one of the most powerful and sophisticated laser weapons ever created.

Distributed Gain High Energy Laser Weapon System is the newest prototype of General Atomics and Boeing capable of launching a solid-state laser that could knock missiles and planes out of the sky. No matter how fast the target is, it’s no match for an energy beam moving at the speed of light.

The U.S. Army is enthusiastic about the project and has given G.A. and Boeing a contract to develop a 300-kW version of G.A.’s laser with beam director, precision acquisition, tracking, and pointing software.

fact checked by Rachel Jones