Navy Designing Railgun with 200 Mile Range, that Fires Missiles at Mach 10

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The US Navy’s electromagnetic railgun programme has a chequered history of scientific breakthrough and budget busting. Berenice Baker profiles a warship weapon that can launch projectiles at Mach 10 without explosives, and explores whether investment is justified in hardware that guzzles energy and risks blowing itself to smithereens.

“Railgun projectiles are generally non-explosive, relying on their enormous speed to destroy the target.”

Railguns consist of two parallel metal rails, between which a projectile held in an armature is loaded, completing a circuit between them. A massive electrical current of the order of one million amperes is applied, creating an electromagnetic field, which in turn produces a force that accelerates the projectile along the rails.

A railgun offers a number of potential advantages over traditional explosive projectile weapons. The accelerating force is applied to the projectile for the entire time the projectile is between the rails of the launch device, as opposed to explosive forces which, however powerful, have a limited duration.

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5 Responses to Navy Designing Railgun with 200 Mile Range, that Fires Missiles at Mach 10

  1. if we spent half as much effort on building people up instead of destroying them

    James M Deshotels
    October 2, 2012 at 2:21 pm
    Reply

  2. James M Deshotels , its a nice thought but a fairy tale wake up and learn your history and things will become more clear to you.This is old news. Old technology. It was featured in The Transformers movie.

    Max
    October 2, 2012 at 2:39 pm
    Reply

  3. Tech advances marches on and should not be limited, hopefully it can always be used for peaceful purposes but sometimes it must be used to preserve the lives of the masses from negative hostile forces, that poses threats to all mankind, must be eliminated unfortunately.

    R. Brown
    October 2, 2012 at 3:28 pm
    Reply

  4. A prototype of this technology was used in the 1996 movie “The Eraser” starring Vanessa Williams and Arnold Schwarzenegger

    Woodie Wills
    October 2, 2012 at 7:40 pm
    Reply

  5. where have you guys been? they have already deployed that weapon on a destroyer. That is why Obama is not sweating Iran and their crazy mofo dictator.

    King
    October 3, 2012 at 5:12 am
    Reply

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