Car Wars Internet Newsletter
Vol. 13, No. 4
April 25, 2010


Greetings autoduellists. A new automotive combat tabletop game called Outrider is in development. The gameplay is fast.The mechanics and setting are reminiscent of Interstate '76. I highly recommend you check out the official blog and request to be involved in playtesting.

DiceFestGames - Outrider Official Blog

BoardGameGeek - Outrider

Last weekend I participated in a Division 7.5 duel run by SWAT member Austin Searles. A beautiful two-level, 3-D arena in 3X scale built by Austin was used with Jada Battle Machines. Photos of the duel will be posted on SWAT HQ in May. Thanks, Austin for a great battle.

Austin is planning to create a video tutorial on how the 3-D arena components were built. The tutorial will be uploaded to the Web to help make the process of constructing 3-D arenas easier for Car Wars players easier. As I am artistically challenged, I am looking forward to seeing this resource online.

Drive Offensively,



Tri-State Auto Rally (TSAR)

Subject: Re: Car Wars Internet Newsletter Vol. 13, No. 3
Date: Mon, 29 Mar 2010 09:16:31 -0400
From: Curt Lindmark
To: Michael P. Owen (Seanet)

Hello, Michael! Greetings from the Tri-State Auto Rally. We've been hosting 3X scale games for a number of years now, and are very eager to announce we're taking things to the floor: 12X scale Car Wars, with action so big that no table can contain it!

Our direct link to our 12X project page can be found at (

We are projecting a fully finished debut in July 2011 at Dexcon in Morristown, NJ (

Until next time, drive offensively.

Curt Lindmark
Tri-State Auto Rally


Art of Les Edwards - Dark Future: Highway Warrior

The Autoduellist/Trucker Local Area Source

Can You Name This Story (Part 13)?
SF Signal

Captain Alex's Gaming Corner
U.S.S. Electric Mayhem

Car Wars for Go Play NW 2009

Car Wars Adventure Gamebook Series
Demian's Gamebook Web Page

Car Wars Sessions

Coolest Movie-Based Cars Ever

Demian's Gamebook Web Page

Everything2 - Car Wars

Fighting Fantasy Gamebook #13: Freeway Fighter
Demian's Gamebook Web Page

Fiction: Mad Jack and Hot Guns (Caution: Strong Language)

Freeway Fighter
Titannica: The Fighting Fantasy Wiki

Freeway Warrior Series
Demian's Gamebook Web Page

Gaming Review: Car Wars Fifth Edition
Level 1 Gamer

Gamers of Winter Con 2009

I-5 Roadwarrior NW Survival and Combat Racing Team

Les Edwards Fantasy Art - Dark Future: Highway Warrior

Mad Max Villains

Mattblackgod's World Blog

Matt Chat 27: Autoduel

Post-Apocalyptic Vehicle Shows Up In Trailer For New Film

Project: Death Race - Full Beta Release

Renegade Car Wars
Curufea Board Games

Review - Deadlands: Hell on Earth - Road Warriors

Rogen Shows off 'Green Hornet' Car at Comic Con

Sabledrake Magazine: Contributors

Slaughter Mountain Run (Freeway Fighter 3)
Peter Andrew Jones Publishing

The Spacegamer Blog

Stalker Apocalypse

Tabletop Gaming Reviews: Thunder Road
Intelligent Gamer

The Ten Best Post-Apocalyptic Survival Vehicles

The Seven: Games and Genres
Troll Magazine Issue 1

Warlock Magazine #2
Demian's Gamebook Web Page

Wasted Roads: The Blog of the Wasteland

White Line Nightmare: A Post Apocalyptic Savage Worlds Car-Battle and RPG Campaign


Graph Racers

Subject: Re: CWIN Submissions
Date: Tue, 30 Mar 2010 08:50:39 -0600
From: Gregg Lewis-Qualls
To: Michael P. Owen (Seanet)

I'll try to drum up some Outrider reviews and session reports from my playtesters by early April.

There's a development blog at

DiceFestGames - Outrider Official Blog

Here's the BGG entry:

Geekdo - Outrider

On the console front, I recently picked up and played Scrap Metal by Slick Entertainment. Not a bad game . . . really wish it was more like Rock N' Roll racing . . . but it treads some new ground for a top-down type racer.

Scrap Metal Official Site
Slick Entertainment

Thanks again,

- G

Subject: Outrider Stuff for April Newsletter
Date: Mon, 12 Apr 2010 09:52:43 -0500
From: Gregg Lewis-Qualls
To: Michael P. Owen (Seanet)

Hope this isn't too late:

Outrider page @ dicefest blog

DiceFestGames development blog

Outrider at BGG/Geekdo

My Scrap Metal review, with links to IGN and Gamespot reviews

I look forward to seeing the newsletter. I am putting together some local demos, as well as a few convnetion appearances, I will link you the photos/reports/reviews when I have them

- G

Warlands Rules Handbook
Wargame Vault


Subject: Official Atomic Highway Paper Miniatures!
Date: Fri, 5 Feb 2010 19:01:34 -0600
From: Radioactive Ape Designs
To: Michael Owen

Hey all,

R.A.D. is pleased to announce official Atomic Highway paper miniatures and papercraft models by the talented hand of Dave Graffam! Dave has already produced his first licensed set, a highly affordable but high quality group of Remnant Sentinels available at DriveThruRPG, also useful for depicting well-armed characters of any post-apocalyptic setting! Look for this and other great official support material from Dave in the future!

Check out the first batch here:

Dave is also currently working on vehicle distance tracking mats/maps, so keep your eyes peeled for more AH goodies!


Subject: Product Atomic Highway - Post Apocalyptic Roleplaying has been updated
Date: Mon, 11 Jan 2010 09:14:04 -0600
From: Radioactive Ape Designs
To: Michael Owen

Hi. I've updated the Atomic Highway pdf with all known errata and included the Homebrewer's Guide and first web enhancement with it. Thanks for all the support; you've helped a small-press, one-man, low-budget operation make some kind of success in a very depressed marketplace. As one of the Little Guys in the field, I truly appreciate your patronage. I gave up a chunk of my life and gambled my savings on this endeavour, and while it's not a market that will ever make much money unless you're one of the big companies, your support has ensured I didn't end up losing my shirt. Thank you again.

Irradiated Freaks: Atomic Highway Mutants and Monsters


FAV Unpainted 1/285th Scale Micro Armour
GHQ Miniatures

Mattel's coolest Hot Wheels ever: They fold

Post-Apocalyptic Paper Miniatures Set

Post-Apocalyptic War Car

Street Violence 28mm Miniatures - Vehicle and Playset Archive


13 Post-Apocalyptic Entertainments

Sturgeon's Law Blog
January 3, 2010


August 31, 2009

Battle Machines: Part 1
November 19, 2009

BWI Checkpoint Rollout Anniversary (And More . . .)

TSA Blog
April 29, 2009

D&D in 3-D on your Tabletop

Mesa Games Blog
January 15, 2009

Jada Toys Battle Machines Wave 2

F4 Diecast Blog
December 28, 2009

Mexican Motor Mafia

Greg Howley Blog
February 27, 2006

Project: Death Race Gets the Green Flag!

Robot Viking Blog
April 1, 2010

Review: Car Wars Fifth Edition

Level 1 Gamer Blog
November 28, 2009


6mm Buggy Comparisons

The Miniatures Page Boards
December 29, 2009

Any Car Wars fans here?

Battlegrounds Games Forums
September 22, 2007

Are There Any Games Like Autoduel?

January 10, 2010

Atomic Highway

Circvs Maximvs
December 24, 2009

Auto Crisis - one handed top down combat racing game. Looks like Payback a little.

Touch Arcade Forums
December 11, 2009

Autoduel: Wheels for Hire, Concept
The Daniverse

Autoduelling Forums
November 11, 2009

Grav-Ball by FASA and other similar games?

The Miniatures Page Boards
July 5, 2009

Definitive Mad Max Game?

Fortress Ameritrash Forums
January 2010

New Matt Chat on "Autoduel"

English Amiga Board
August 29, 2009


The Miniatures Page Boards
March 1, 2004

Rollerball rules

The Miniatures Page Boards
August 24, 2006

Rules Regarding Trains

Geekdo - Car Wars Forums
January 20, 2010

Rush N' Crush (AEG/Rackham) is really fun

RPGnet Forums
December 1, 2009

They Don't Make Them Like They Used To

Shrapnel Games Forums
February 10, 2008

What happened to Warlands?

The Miniatures Page Boards
January 7, 2010

A World of Hurt Autoduel

Biohazard Games
Blue Planet Mailing List Archive
August 22, 2001

Who said that panel-less Viper was the ultimate post-apocalyptic car?

Final Gear Forums
March 28, 2009


Subject: Rush N' Crush
Date: Tue, 30 Mar 2010 14:01:41 -0700
From: Sean Lambert
To: Michael P. Owen

I'm a bit slow on the draw, as you mentioned this game a few newsletters back. I was gifted a copy of this game (I guess it pays to have people think of you first when they encounter anything combining guns and cars) and played it a few times.  Anyway, I wanted to provide an autoduellist's viewpoint to supplement the reviews on BoardGameGeek.

First, and most importantly, throw out the "Arcade-Style" rules - they are crap. For example, gameplay proceeds clockwise rather than in leader order; so you might go before someone who is just one square ahead of you allowing you to ram full speed into their rear, as if they were at a dead stop. This makes ramming far too powerful, and can eliminate someone on their first or second turn. Also, the weapon rules are not consistent with the Advanced Rules, which can be confusing when you decide to switch.

The "Advanced" rules are not only better, but they are also easier to understand. Still, the rules aren't completely clear and the flavor text, while humorous, makes it harder to understand the game. I suggest you use common sense and agree on the interpretation of poorly-worded rules before playing, or as problems arise. The few rough edges include an inconsistent target of die rolls - sometimes you want to roll high, and sometimes you want to roll low, forcing you to refer to the rules for various situations. It could use a quick-reference chart for these things.

That said, it seems like a pretty fun game. It generally works well enough as long as you don't let someone get a good lead, especially if they have a lot of driving points, or they'll walk away with the victory. Rush N' Crush lacks the randomness of movement of Formula De, instead using randomness of consequences. This is the familiar model Car Wars uses: you set your speed, roll to see if bad stuff happens.

Weapons are pretty simple, machine-gun, flamethrower, two kinds of ram plates. The mine dropper is not really as effective as I would have hoped, though there seems to be something scary about the mines that makes people go out of the way to avoid them anyway.

Bad driving is more likely to kill you than anything else, but the weapons do make it easier for you to do yourself in, even if they are not that big of a threat on their own.  In three games we had one weapons-caused death and 7-8 crashes; bad driving seems more popular near the end of the game as people attempt to catch the leader.

This game is very similar to Formula De in appearance, though movement is quite different. Yes, Formula De tracks are similar, but they tend to be too narrow and lack obstacles to force lane changes which will greatly change the character of the game. With no modifications you can basically open up full throttle and race around the Formula De track with no "turning". I suppose you could add obstacles or maybe force virtual lane changes in corners . . .

The "cars" are kind of dumb looking, but they can easily be replaced with something more car-looking so you don't have to argue over which end is the front.

It would be really easy to add new tracks, vehicles, weapons, or variants; the whole game seems pretty modular. I think the key is to keep it simple, though. One of the reasons Car Wars didn't appeal to casual gamers is the complexity and the length of time it takes to play a few seconds of combat. Rush N' Crush seems like it's already close to the border of too slow, but is still playable by friends who just want to humor an autoduellist's obsession.

Drive Offensively,

Sean Lambert
Seattle, WA


Awesome Looking HL2 Car Combat Mod Out Today
Gamers with Jobs

Blood Car 2000
Flash Racing Online

Burnin Rubber 3
Flash Racing Online

Car Combat Games

Crazy Car Gangsters 2.0

Fast Lane Carnage

Fast Lane Carnage
Moby Games

Metal Drift Official Site
Black Jacket Studios

Review - Darkwind: War on Wheels

Streets of SimCity
Wikia Gaming

Taurus Driven Militia: Interstate '82 Headquarters

Zombie Driver Official Site
Exor Studios


Grand Theft Auto 2 Car Guide v1.26

Road Blaster/Road Avenger

Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars Official Site
Psyonix Studios


Auto Crisis Preview


Editor's Note: Thanks to Tony Brotherton for the notice about Automangle.

Concrete Combat Racing Preview

Concrete Combat Racing

Gunshock Racing

Gunshock Racing

GWM: Guns, Wheels & Madheads

GWM: Guns, Wheels & Madheads 3D

Horror Racing Lite Preview

Horror Racing Lite
App Shopper

Horror Racing Preview

Horror Racing

Horror Racing Review


Scarecrow suggests . . . If you like 'The Book of Eli,' check out 'Mad Max" and other post-apocalyptic films
The Seattle Times


Blue Thunder Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Limited Print Run to Approximately 1,000 Copies
Arthur B. Rubinstein Official Site and Buy Soundtrax

Music for Carmageddon
BoardGameGeek - Car Wars Forums

RoboCop Complete: Intrada Special Collection Volume 129
Limited Print Run to 3,000 Copies
Intrada Store


Green-light Received for 'the Road Avenger' Novel

The Road Avenger Novel Forums - Contemporary Literature

Mary Margaret Park Publishing


Eurocopter Moves One Step Closer to 'Whisper Mode'

By Jason Paur
February 25, 2010

Just about every helicopter operator is quite familiar with noise complaints. Whether it be the local news helicopter or even a medical helicopter, many people on the ground don’t like the sound created by rotary-wing aircraft.

This week Eurocopter unveiled its most recent effort to reduce helicopter noise with the radical-looking Blue Edge rotor blade. The new blade has been tested on one of the company’s EC155 helicopters and was shown to reduce noise 3 to 4 decibels, according to the company.

In addition to the Blue Edge rotor blade, the company also introduced something called Blue Pulse technology. Also designed to reduce helicopter noise, the Blue Pulse system uses three flap modules in the trailing edge of each rotor blade. Piezoelectric motors move actuate the flaps 15 to 40 times per second in reduce the "slap noise" often heard when a helicopter is descending.

Both of these technologies are able to reduce noise by minimizing the blade-vortex interaction of the main rotor on a helicopter. Blade-vortex interaction is the source of the pulsating sound most of us are familiar with when helicopters fly overhead. The noise is created when a rotor blade hits the wake vortex left behind from the blade in front of it.

You can listen to a cockpit recording of Eurocopter’s EC155 with and without the Blue Edge rotor below.

Normally, the entire length of the rotor blade interacts with the vortex of the preceding blade. With the Blue Edge rotors, the double-swept tips of the rotor blade reduce the length of the blade-vortex interaction, and it does it at the tip where the blades are moving the fastest relative to the air. The result is a decrease in the sound produced due of the wake interaction at the tip.

Both the new rotor blade and trailing edge flaps are part of what Eurocopter is calling its "Bluecopter" technology. The company says the goal is to create more environmentally friendly helicopters from both a noise and emissions standpoint. We reported on Eurocopter’s plan for a fuel-efficient diesel helicopter on Wednesday.

No confirmation from Eurocopter, but in avoiding putting the "green" label on their efforts, the company appears to be borrowing from everybody’s favorite movie helicopter legend, Blue Thunder. The 1980s cinematic masterpiece features a helicopter made by what is now Eurocopter, an Aérospatiale Gazelle. And one of the helicopter’s most impressive technologies was its "whisper mode" that allowed it to fly around as quiet as a glider. Could just be a coincidence.

Hungarian Electric Car Splits Into Two Smaller Cars
February 24, 2010

Lanxon writes to mention that Antro, a Hungarian car manufacturer, is developing a new electric car that can split into two smaller cars. Antro plans to have it on the market by 2012. "The environmentally-conscious company started research back in 2002 and, with backing from various local sponsors, has invested 1.5 million euros in market research and development of a working prototype. The Antro Solo concept is a three-passenger car, with a hybrid drive and solar cells on its roof that the company says could generate enough electricity for up to 20km a day at city speeds. Futuristic looking in itself, the grander plan for the car is much more audacious: Antro intends to allow users to be able to connect two Antro Solos to form a six-passenger Antro Duo. Or perhaps more interesting still, owners of a Duo could split the car into two smaller Solos should Mum have different weekend plans to Dad. Or if they divorce."

M4 in Wales to be 'hydrogen highway,' say ministers

The M4 in south Wales is to become a "hydrogen highway", with alternative energy refuelling points, Welsh Secretary, Peter Hain, has announced.

BBC News
February 12, 2010

The scheme, to extend into south west England, is aimed at making hydrogen and electric-powered vehicles a viable alternative to petrol-driven machines.

Under the plan, Wales will lead in developing alternative fuels, including hydrogen from renewable sources.

The aim is to create an extensive renewable refuelling infrastructure.

Hydrogen has long been touted as an alternative energy source to carbon-rich fossil fuels.

One of the biggest obstacles to wider adoption of fuel-cell vehicles is the lack of hydrogen fuelling stations.

To be used as a fuel, hydrogen must first be produced using another energy source.

While some scientists are hopeful of the fuel uses of hydrogen, many others are sceptical because it is inefficient to produce and expensive to transport and to convert into electricity.

Wales has been designated a Low Carbon Economic Area (LCEA) for hydrogen and low carbon fuel technologies such as natural gas and bio-methane.

In collaboration with south west England and other regions, the M4 is set to become the UK's longest "hydrogen highway," with a range of alternative refuelling points at strategic sites.

The aim is for refuelling points in Wales to link with similar filling points proposed for Swindon and London, extending to the Midlands.

Plug-in facilities

The assembly government also hopes making the M4 into a hydrogen highway by as early as 2015 will attract investment from all sectors of the motoring industry.

Supporters see the provision of electric plug-in facilities, hydrogen, compressed natural gas and bio-methane-filling points as an essential first stage in stimulating the alternative fuels market in transport.

The aim is that with the filling points catering for existing low-carbon vehicles, Wales will be in a prime location as they provide a springboard for alternative vehicle development and enable vehicle manufacturers to demonstrate and validate the technology in the UK.

Wales already has two multi-fuel filling facilities in south Wales, at Baglan and Treforest.

Gordon James, director of Friends of the Earth Cymru, welcomed the scheme but said it was key that renewable energy was used to make the hydrogen and provide the electricity of the electric vehicle charging points.

He said: "This is excellent news. It will help reduce the greenhouse gas emissions for the transport sector which is responsible for about 12% of carbon dioxide emissions in Wales.

"It will also help develop the green economy in Wales. It shows that Wales is prepared to take the lead in this area, which is something we can proud of.

"Following last year's scrapping of plans to build the Gwent Levels motorway, this shows that we are moving in the right direction."

Environment Minister Jane Davidson and Welsh Secretary Peter Hain launched the hydrogen highway scheme.

Linked to the announcement, the University of Glamorgan is to invest more than £6m to develop new low-carbon technologies including a hydrogen engine test facility at Baglan, Port Talbot, just off the M4.

Military's Robotic Pack Mule Gets $32M Boost
February 1, 2010

coondoggie sends word that Boston Dynamics, maker of the BigDog robot we have been following for a while, has just been awarded a $32M DARPA contract to produce robotic "pack dogs" for the military. "What kind of robot will automatically follow a leader, carry 400 lbs. (182 kg) of military gear, walk 20 miles in all manner of weather, and go 24 hours without refueling? Well, we might soon find out as DARPA has awarded a $32 million contract to build its Legged Squad Support System (LS3) which uses sensors and a GPS to walk along with soldiers across all manner of terrain in any weather without pulling any muscles."

Super Strong Metal Foam Discovered
February 1, 2010

MikeChino writes to tell us that a North Carolina State University researcher has discovered what appears to be the strongest metal foam yet, capable of compressing up to 80% of its original size under load and still retain the original shape. The hope is that this amazing material could be used in cars, body armor, or even buildings to absorb the shock from earthquakes. "Metal foam is exactly what you might think – a cellular structure made from metal with tiny pockets of space inside. What makes Rabiei’s metal foam better than others is that she’s been able to make the tiny pockets of space more uniform. And that apparently is what gives it the strength as well as elasticity it needs in order to compress as much as it does without deformation. Many tests are being performed in the laboratory to determine its strength, but so far Rabiei says that the spongy material has 'a much higher strength-to-density ratio than any metal foam that has ever been reported.' Calculations also predict that in car accidents, when two pieces of her composite metal foam are inserted 'behind the bumper of a car traveling at 28 mph, the impact would feel the same to passengers as an impact traveling at only 5 mph.'"

Tesla's Roadster To Exit In 2011

If you want a Tesla Roadster, you better sign up now. Tesla Motors plans to stop building the car in 2011.

Buried deep inside the Securities and Exchange Commission paperwork Tesla filed ahead of its IPO is the announcement that production of the two-seater and its souped up Roadster Sport sibling (pictured) will stop next year, and a replacement won’t hit the road until 2013 at the earliest.

Why? Because it doesn’t have anyone to build it.

“We do not plan to sell our current generation Tesla Roadster after 2011 due to planned tooling changes at a supplier for the Tesla Roadster,” the company wrote in the filing.” The Roadster is built by Lotus, so presumably Tesla is talking about changes at the British automaker’s factory in Hethel, England, but we can’t confirm that because Tesla spokesman Ricardo Reyes declined to comment.

Tesla plans to replace the Roadster, but not “until at least one year after the launch of the Model S, which is not expected to be in production until 2012.” The company just closed a $465 million loan with the Department of Energy to finance construction of the Model S sedan, and it is focusing most of its time and resources on that car.

Stopping production of the Roadster could could present a problem, because it means Tesla won’t have any cars to sell — and no revenue coming in.

“As a result, we anticipate that we may generate limited, if any, revenue from selling electric vehicles after 2011 until the launch of the planned model S,” the company says in the SEC filing. That may not be a problem if S production starts on plan and goes off without a hitch, but if Tesla hits any snags, things could get ugly fast — a point it concedes in the filing.

“The launch of the Model S could be delayed for a number of reasons and any such delays may be significant and would extend the period in which we would generate limited, if any, revenues from sales of our electric vehicles.”

The move amounts to killing the car that made Tesla famous for the sake of the Model S. Tesla better hope everything goes according to plan, or it surely will regret that decision.

Cool DIY Streamliner Motorcycle Gets 214 MPG

Chuck Squatriglia
January 26, 2010

We love eco-modders and hypermilers because their singular pursuit of superlative fuel economy often results in innovative thinking and interesting vehicles. Like, say, this Honda streamliner. Not only did Allert Jacobs’ slick DIY fairing make a pedestrian Honda Innova motorcycle downright cool, it boosted the bike’s fuel economy to 214 mpg.

The Honda Innova is no slouch out of the box, returning 133 mpg from a 125cc engine producing a whopping 9 horsepower. But the Dutch “efficiency enthusiast,” as EcoModder calls him in its write-up, couldn’t leave well enough alone.

He’s put in a lot of miles on recumbent bicycles and knows a thing or two about aerodynamics, so the first thing he did was convert the Inova to a recumbent by moving the seat waaaay down on the bike’s step-through frame and moving the footpegs. That and a simple fairing boosted the bike’s top speed from 56 mph to 69 mph. Together with taller gearing, Jacobs raised his fuel economy to 156 mpg.

But why stop there? Jacobs spent several months designing and building the full fairing, which splits in two vertically just behind the windshield so he can get in. While it looks like you’d blow right over with a sneeze, Jacobs claims the bike is stable even in a 40-mph crosswind.

The bike’s record is 214 mpg, and Jacobs says it averages 199. But he’s not done yet. He's shooting for 235 mpg -- which for those using the metric system is 1 liter per 100 kilometers.

More info and pics at EcoModder, where one member is doing a similar mod with a Suzuki Burgman scooter.

Electromagnetic Pulse Gun To Help In Police Chases
January 22, 2010

"In an attempt to put an end to dangerous, high-speed police chases, scientists at Eureka Aerospace have developed an electromagnetic pulse gun called the High Power Electromagnetic System, or HPEMS. It develops a high-intensity directed pulse of electricity designed to disable a car's microprocessor system, shutting down all of its systems. Right now the prototype seen in a video fills an entire lab, but they have plans to shrink its size to hand-held proportions. Some form of this is already featured in OnStar-equipped vehicles though the electromagnetic signal used to disable the vehicle is beamed via satellite, and doesn't cripple the in-car computer, but rather puts it into a mode that allows police to easily catch and then stop the fleeing criminal."

A Sonic Blaster So Loud, It Could Be Deadly

David Hambling
January 18, 2010

All kinds of of devices have been dubbed “sonic blasters” — from the Long Range Acoustic Device super loudhailer to the piercing Banshee to the Inferno  (”most unbearable, gut-wrenching noise I’ve ever heard in my life” according to Danger Room’s own Sharon Weinberger). But a new device, developed in Israel, merits the “sonic blaster” label more than most: the Thunder Generator really is a blaster, producing a series of ear-splitting explosions. Some are so loud, they could be deadly.

Israeli firm PDT Agro developed the Thunder Generator, based on a gadget to scare away birds. The design is very simple: gas from a cylinder of domestic liquid petroleum (LPG) is mixed with air and then detonated, producing a series of high-intensity blasts. Patented “pulse detonation” technology ensures high-decibel blasts. According to Defense News, the Israeli Ministry of Defense has now licensed a firm called ArmyTec to market the Thunder Generator for military and security applications.

The generator can produce up to a hundred blasts a minute, with a 12-kilogram cylinder of gas running to around five thousand blasts. ArmyTec say it can continue for “hours of continous operation,” and suggest that a number of generators could be networked together to cover a wide area. Various configurations are possible, including a curved barrel for firing around corners.

Understandably, the device is designed to be used remotely. It has an effective range of up to fifty meters, and the makers say that it is extremely loud but will not do any lasting damage at this range. However, they warn that within ten meters the Thunder Generator could cause permanent damage or even death (!).

Explosive acoustic weapons are not in themselves a new concept. Explosives are one of the few ways of producing a sound loud enough to have a real effect. The Germans experimented with this in World War II without much success. Back in the 1990’s Primex Physics International carried out development work on a crowd-control  ”acoustic blaster” which combined the output for four separate explosive-driven sources. The device was so large it had to be mounted on a truck, and while the company thought it might one day work out to a hundred meters this was not proven.

The tough part has always been getting the noise to blare in one direction. It is difficult to have an arrangement that can impact the target without deafening the operator. Prolonged exposure is even worse than sort blasts. Electronic devices like LRAD are fairly directional, but are by no means quiet for the user. The Thunder Generator gets around this by allowing the operator be be at a safe distance.

Perhaps it might be more accurate to see the Thunder Generator as a sort of repeating stun grenade; the fuel-air blast it produces is not dissimilar to the fuel-air explosion produced by the new Improved Flash Bang Grenade developed at Sandia National Laboratory. And in at least one case a large number of blast grenades were used for their sonic deterrent effect.

During the Vietnam War, the U.S. operated a number of floating river bases. There was a constant danger of attack from Vietcong swimmers, so they were kept at bay by explosive means, as this memorial site recalls:

“Seafloat was protected from swimmer zapper attacks by throwing concussion grenades into the water from 4 watch stations so that one grenade exploded underneath the ammo pontoons as often as every 30 seconds 24 hours a day. “

This approach seems to have been effective against swimmers, but it also resulted in cracks in the pontoons, which had to be pumped out daily.

The agricultural predecessor of the Thunder Generator has been used in Israel for nearly two years without accident. But there is clearly a risk of leaving an unattended system driven by a gas cannister. And of course there are countermeasures: as a British science program showed last year, with sufficient sound insulation even the LRAD can be damped to a tolderable level.

As with all non-lethals, what happens in practice is likely to be less important than the way it is used. The Thunder Generator could be a good way of keeping stone-throwing youths out of a sensitive area without using excessive force. Or it might be condemned as sonic harassment which exposes whole neighborhoods to incessant noise.

Using EMP To Punch Holes In Steel
January 16, 2010

angrytuna writes "The Economist is running a story about a group of researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Machine Tools and Forming Technology in Chemnitz, Germany, who've found a way to use an EMP device to shape and punch holes through steel. The process enjoys advantages over both lasers, which take more time to bore the hole (0.2 vs. 1.4 seconds), and by metal presses, which can leave burrs that must be removed by hand."


Gamecreature - How Its Done: About Our Founder Kyle Miller

Andrew Buttery's Page
The Art of Manliness


1,000,000 Strong for the Weaponization of NASCAR

Car Wars Demotivational Poster
MotiFake: Fake Motivational Posters

[Humor] Funny quotes from RPG books Forums

January 5, 2009

Not technically an RPG, but the old Car Wars game had an example of autofire weapons that started like this: "Four pedestrians are standing in a line. Realizing that people this dim need to be removed from the gene pool, our intrepid autoduelist fires his laser…"

January 8, 2009

That was Truck Stop, or Sunday Drivers, I can't recall which. Both were supplements written by Aaron Allston.

Dungeon Evolution
Greywulf's Lair

# drow  wrote:

@dirk; 5e (Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition) will pretty much be car wars. you’ll build your character from a selection of body types, armor, and weapons (still mostly procured from Uncle Albert's), then have a big duel against your friends. Division 30 duels will be limited to 30,000 combined XP and GP. Afterwards, everyone will agree to try a BLUD duel next time, and your still-nameless PC will be unceremoniously shuffled into a box.
Posted March 10, 2009

# Vulcan Stev wrote:
@drow Well that'll make all the autoduellists happy. You’re forgetting that you're unnamed PC will in fact have a Gold Cross account.
Posted 11 Mar 2009

What is your country's national sport?
Jolt Online Gaming Forums