A great man once said that the best kind of gun is the one you only have to fire once. That man was Tony Stark, and he is the world's greatest weapons manufacturer. The only problem is that he's also fictional. Despite the fact that the Iron Man himself doesn't exist, that doesn't mean that awesome weapons from TV and movies don't exist. These are the best weapons that were inspired by movies and TV.
More: What's Your Favourite Movie Weapon? 5 Insane Video Game Weapons That Became Real
Why kill someone and incite potential revenge when you can simply scare someone off? Introducing the latest in non-lethal technology: the pain ray. Seen in shows like Star Trek, the idea behind firing some invisible rays at someone to stop them in their tracks has inspired some crazy tech.
How about the LRAD Sound Cannon, which bellows out sound of up to 140dB (humans experience discomfort at 120dB) to disperse, disorient and dissuade crowds of angry rioters.
The Pentagon also has its own pain ray. Officially branded the "Active Denial System", this contraption makes the target feel like they are being scalded by hot steam. It blasts the target with a concentrated beam equivalent to 12 joules per cubic centimetre. Ouch. Turns out it really hurts, too.
Turns out the US Military has a whole bunch of non-lethal options up its sleeve, which it details in a manifesto about the less lethal side of waging a war.
The best weapon in
The Fifth Element
, besides Leeloo Dallas and her Multipass, is the Zorg ZF-1.
The ZF-1 was capable of doing everything from firing bullets that could travel around corners, shooting nets, firing torrents of flame and it even had a self-destruct button. While our guns might not be as explosive in the hands of mutant alien bounty hunters, we do have a real-world equivalent: the XM-25.
This fearsome piece of military tech is all sorts of bad news if you're the one who happens to be on the wrong end of it. The XM-25's fire-control system uses thermal optic, day-sight, laser range finder, compass and IR light to exactly measure the distance to the target, programming each of the rounds’ fuses so it explodes next to the target using a wireless connection. According to the US Army, this gives maximum destruction power and minimum collateral damage, while allowing to save barriers that previously didn’t allow to reach the target.
It costs $25,000 per gun and $25 per bullet, but I think if you outfit a few platoons with a handful of the weapon, you'll get the message across: don't f**k with war gadgets.
The Death Star
The technological terror at the heart of the Galactic Empire's war effort, the Death Star is a space station the size of a small moon with the power to blow up planets thanks to its giant space laser. Surely we can't have one of these in real life, can we? Well, no, but we got so close.
Late last year, a few bright sparks opened up a petition on the Whitehouse's We Are The People page to actually get the multi-billion dollar space station built. Unfortunately, however, while the US government sees the benefit in building a space station that would increase jobs and beef up the Defence capability of a nation -- and a planet -- the Administration said that it's not interested in blowing up planets.
You can still back the project on Kickstarter, however.
Aliens, G.I Joe: Retaliation, Iron Man, Avatar and even The Matrix: Revolutions: all of them feature crazy mechs, and exoskeleton suits. Turns out, you can actually get one in real life.
The geniuses over at Raytheon have built the XOS Exoskeleton which is capable of turning 90kg of gear into 9kg thanks to motor-assisted lifting. A company called Cyberdyne (not the one you're thinking of), built an exoskeleton called HAL (calm down) that shields the user from radiation whilst helping them lift significant weight.
Firing a bullet means you've always had to be facing your foe in a straight line so that the bullet can fly from your barrel into the target, but what if you didn't have to face them? What if you could fire a bullet that you can guide in a different fashion like Angelina Jolie in the film adaptation of the comic book Wanted?
While you might not be able to "curve" a bullet -- or look as good as Angelina Jolie while trying -- you can actually get a bullet to change course once it has been fired.
This tiny little bullet actually features tiny fins that stabilises it and changes its course mid-flight, making it able to hit a target from 2000 metres away. Whoa.
Eraser, Demolition Man, Transformers: Revenge Of the Fallen and Stargate Atlantis all feature enormous mounted boom cannons called Rail Guns that are used to dispatch with Decepticons and Wraith ships alike.
In the Atlantis franchise, a railgun prototype is used against the Wraith Darts. It has a magazine size of 10,000 rounds and hits its target with a velocity of Mach 5 at a distance of 250 miles. These railguns are used as anti-aircraft point defense weapons, and are mounted on wheeled chassis like field guns. Various Earth space warships in the Stargate: SG-1 franchise are depicted to be armed with similar weapons.
Turns out that these rail guns aren't just relegated to fictional space battles: they really exist! US Navy ships are being used in the real world as mounting platforms for rail guns that can fire 33-megajoules of energy to destroy targets up to 50 kilometres away. Check out the vid:
Frikkin' Sharks With Frikkin' Laser Beams On Their Frikkin' Heads
So we really wanted to put lightsabres on this list. But technologically, science is just not there yet. The closest we could find was a goofy (and potentially dangerous) high-powered lightsabre replica from an outfit called Wicked Lasers. Turns out that Wicked Lasers got their Austin Powers-style Laser Shark on after touting the idea on Facebook. Check out the video...
The guy that helped them do it was Australian marine biologist/TV host, Luke Tipple. Sounds fun, apart from freaking out Bahamas residents who had no idea what the hell was going on. In real life we don’t strap lasers to sharks. But the US military does use dolphins to detect mines and more.
Did we miss any? Let us know what you think is awesome in the comments.