A decade old article from Wired that has relevance to those so-called ‘sonic attacks’ at the US embassies in Cuba and China. Well worth the trip down memory lane…
July 6, 2008, Wired.
The U.S. military bankrolled early development of a non-lethal microwave weapon that creates sound inside your head. The project is known as MEDUSA – a contrived acronym for Mob Excess Deterrent Using Silent Audio. And it should not be confused with the Long Range Acoustic Device and similar gadgets which simply project sound. This one uses the so-called “microwave auditory effect”: a beam of microwaves is turned into sound by the interaction with your head. Nobody else can hear it unless they are in the beam as well. The idea (dubbed “the telepathic ray gun”) was mentioned in a 1998 US Army study, which turned up in a recent Freedom of Information Act document dump. Five years later, the Navy decided to put some R&D dollars into the project. Now … Dr. Lev Sadovnik of the Sierra Nevada Corporation has provided more details. There are health risks, he notes. The biggest issue from the microwave weapon is … the risk of brain damage from the high-intensity shockwave created by the microwave pulse. A device that delivered a lethal shockwave inside the target’s skull might make an effective death ray. Dr. Sadovnik also makes the intriguing suggestion that … it might be used at low power to produce a whisper that was too quiet to perceive consciously but might be able to subconsciously influence someone. Sadovnik even suggests subliminal advertising, beaming information that is not consciously heard (a notion also spotted on the US Army’s voice-to-skull page). SNIPRead more →