The LaWS, an acronym for Laser Weapons System is deployed on board the USS Ponce amphibious transport ship.
According to the military, the laser is more precise than a bullet.
"It's not a niche weapon system like some other weapons that we have throughout the military where it's only good against air contacts, or it's only good against surface targets, or it's only good against, you know, ground-based targets - in this case this is a very versatile weapon, it can be used against a variety of targets," said Capt. Christopher Wells.
LaWS moves at the speed of light. For comparison, that is 50,000 times the speed of an incoming ICBM.
"We don't worry about wind, we don't worry about range, we don't worry about anything else. We're able to engage the targets at the speed of light," said Lt. Cale Hughes, laser weapons system officer.
For the test, the USS Ponce crew launched the target - a drone aircraft. In an instant, the drone's wing lit up, heated to a temperature of thousands of degrees, lethally damaging the aircraft and sending it hurtling down to the sea.
The strike comes silently and invisibly.
"It operates in an invisible part of the electromagnetic spectrum so you don't see the beam, it doesn't make any sound, it's completely silent and it's incredibly effective at what it does," said Hughes.