Prison inmates aren’t necessarily known for their stellar behavioral records. And California’s Pitchess Detention Center, where there had already been a recorded 257 inmate-on-inmate assaults and 19 assaults on deputies over the fist half of this year, thought it was time to start testing different methods to control the prison population. Enter Raytheon’s Assault Intervention Device, a seven-and-a-half-foot-tall device designed to focus a ray of invisible energy rays at misbehaving inmates, causing the gentle sensation of searing flesh.
The device, which will be mounted high on the wall in a dormitory housing some 65 prisoners, does no damage but it’s ray penetrates the skin about 1/64th of an inch over an area about the size of a CD, causing a sensation that’s been equated to opening an extremely hot oven. The pain stops when the target gets out of the way of the beam.
While the use of the ‘pain ray’ is still very much in the experimental phase, though we imagine a successful tenure at Pitchess could lead to wider use.