The determination was that the Free Electron Laser has the highest technical risk in terms of being ultimately able to field on a ship, so we thought the Navy could better concentrate on other laser programs
With the Electromagnetic Railgun, the committee felt the technical challenges to developing and fielding the weapon would be daunting, particularly [related to] the power required and the barrel of the gun having limited life.
The process of passing a defense budget making it through no fewer than four committees and two floor votes, so it’s not like these programs cease to exist. But unless the Navy makes a big push for its futuristic weapons, both of them will die on the drawing board.
Defense budget primer (72 pages)
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