Re: Should we be developing nonlethal means of

Michael S. Lorrey (
Sat, 02 Oct 1999 10:43:06 -0400

den Otter wrote:
> ----------
> > From:
> > >--the "laser taser" that has been discussed earlier is a prime
> > >candidate, assuming that it works. That would be a really nice
> > >all-round weapon.
> >
> > What was the laser taser again? Would this be a taser with a laser
> > sighting mechanism?
> No (though those do in fact exist), it's a taser that uses two
> UV laser beams instead of metal wires to guide the current
> to and from the target. I don't think there's a working prototype
> yet, mainly due to a lack of funding ( wouldn't this be something
> for something like "idea futures", btw? -- I mean, this thing has
> *huge* market potential) The device has been mentioned at least
> twice before on this list, but I can't find the posts in the archives
> and I didn't have much luck with the web search either so far.
> Here's the "regular" taser's home page, btw. Has lots of info.

This sounds like a great way to make the taser more of a longer range device.

> [dart guns]
> > This talk of only the needle makes me think of the old sci-fi needler
> > concept. Actually, small high velocity needles in a shotgun pattern might
> > provide a pretty good delivery device for our chosen incapacitation agent.
> Yes, good idea. That should increase the chances of a successful
> toxin delivery quite a bit (assuming that every dart can knock out
> the attacker by itself, of course).

The problem with the shotgun blast idea is that the spreading phenomenon. Round lead shot does spread, but not by much because of its ballistic stability and simple aerodynamics. Needles, on the other hand, would generate much more drag (more surface area to a given mass) than can be overcome by inertia, and there will be more chaotic turbulence, causing much greater spreading. It might even be so bad that the shooter might hit himself with one or two needles looping around.

> > You point out the Achilles heel when you say the problem is which agent to
> > use. I'll need to look at some of my drug references more deeply to see if I
> > can't come up with a good one.
> I'm pretty sure there's something useful out there. Perhaps
> some animal toxin (
> has quite a list). "Zombie powder" is made from some kind
> of fish poison, afaik. It would certainly take someone out,
> but perhaps there would be some, uh, brain damage (though
> it is also suggested that the brain damage is a result of
> oxigen deprivation in the coffin, and not the toxin itself).
> I bet the CIA / KGB & friends have done some research in
> this field, btw. Anyone got the appropriate conspiracy links?

WARNING: Potentially graphic descriptions of violence: CIA typically relies on rohypnol, pentathol, and the other reliables when it wants its victims intact. They usually only do this when they want to either help someone defect, or to interrogate or reprogram a targeted person. If they want to put the prisoner back where he came from afterward (i.e. no visible marks), they will use a sensory deprivation chamber, with hydrophones on the victim, for a period of several hours.

When it wants them dead they apply an agent that causes a heart attack (if they want it to appear natural), or they will use a device that a freind of mine (a former intelligence man) has an example of. Its similar to that needle weapon that the chameleon alien assasin uses on X-files, only it has a CO2 cartridge inside the handle, and the needle is hollow, so when the victim is stabbed, the CO2 cartride discharges through the needle and fills the victim with several cubic feet of gas. A puncture in the thigh will cause the gas to go throught he femoral artery to the heart and stop the heart, collapse the lungs, and concuss the victims brain. A hit to the torso will cause the lungs and heart to come out the victims' mouth, and his brains to come out his ears.

> [lethal/nonlethal combo]
> > This might be a compromise option. Try the nonlethal feature first, and
> > if the attacker is still able to attack, switch over to deadly force. Not
> > the most elegant solution, but even with a purely lethal weapon you don't
> > always incapacitate with the first shot.
> Though ideally you'd design a new weapon around this concept,
> it might be more realistic to make a "taser/needle gun pod"
> that's attached to a standard gun.

I have an idea that is kind of the reverse:

Using nanotech, use normal firearms with normal bullets, but which contain medical nanites. Once you've shot your mag and the scene is secure, you can activate the nanites to repair the damage to the bodies while the crooks are in handcuffs.

Mike Lorrey