Future weapons: Rail gun

On a Future Weapons segment on the History Channel the other day they were talking about a new rail gun the Navy is testing. They said the
projectile that this rail gun fires travels at something like Mach 10. The impact of the projectile is enough to destroy anything it hits without using any explosives. The program said the range on this new weapon was over 215 miles. Developing a guidance package that has electronics that can withstand the terrific G forces seems to be one of the major hurdles to overcome. One of the big advantages that this new weapon will have is a lower cost per projectile. Instead of the hundreds of thousands that a missile might cost, $40,000 or less. The Generals sure do have some neat toys to play with.
Dennis
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TwoGuns wrote:

ITYM "Admirals", Although the landlubbers have some fun stuff too.
--

FF


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I am surprised to hear that the military is considering rail guns. Well, not really. But I digress.
Rail guns were used by the Germans in WWII, and found to be very ineffective and very vulnerable. They took HUGE crews to operate, and you didn't even have to hit the thing to immobilize it, just hit the train tracks. Lots of European tracks would not support the gun and its accompanying railroad vehicles.
But, then, the military has to do SOMETHING with all that money, don't they?
Steve
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And now they are installing tracks on ships for the rail guns? Won't the guns roll off the ship in heave seas?
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Tom Gardner wrote:

Not sure if these replies are serious or not, but rail guns and rail(way) mounted guns are entirely different things. Rail guns use electromagnetic fields to accelerate a projectile to hypersonic speeds. Rail mounted guns just move large conventional guns around.
Pete C.
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Well, Goddammit, be more careful next time. Using common words and short sentences confuses us old farts. ;-)
Steve
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"Pete C." wrote:

How about a rail gun that is mounted to ride on rails.
John
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John wrote:

Why would someone build a silly thing like that?
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"Pete C." wrote:

It would make a heck of a good pork barrel (like in gun) project.
John
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So it won't be there when counterbattery fire comes back?
Wes S
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snipped-for-privacy@lycos.com wrote:

    That was pretty punny Wes.....LOL.
Pete
--
Pete Snell
Department of Physics
  Click to see the full signature.
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Is that why they call it a rail gun?
Steve
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Steve B wrote:

These guns are electromagnetic projectile weapons, using metal rails to conduct fantastic electrical currents to accelerate a conductive metal projectile. This has nothing to do with railway transportable large artillery, which would be ludicrous for a NAVY to have, anyway.
Jon
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But maybe we could mount such a gun on a mag-lev railway! That would be like, uh, double destruction.
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I think that there are twi kinds of rail guns. One is an artillery piece that travels along railroads. Another is a electricity powered gun where a projectile is propelled along copper "rails" by magnetif roces generated by enormous electric currents. I think that the original post talked about the latter type.
i
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wrote:

never mind ..............
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Steve B wrote:

That is NOT the type of rail gun he talking about. :-) ...lew...
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Oh hell yes..Big Bertha shacked up with Redi Kilowatt........and the bastard children are....
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Railgun
http://www.powerlabs.org/railgun2.htm
http://home.insightbb.com/~jmengel4/rail/rail-intro.html
Also...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coilgun
HSM links http://www.thinkbotics.com/military.htm http://www.gausspistol.com/index.html
Gunner
"Deep in her heart, every moslem woman yearns to show us her tits" John Griffin
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wrong type of rail gun - has nothing to do with a train - think electromagnetic acceleration of copper rods to hypersonic speeds
wrote:

--
Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com


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There's a good story on electronics in projectiles with high G
During WWII, Brits developed proximity sensor for AA artillery shell.
The main target was German V2 rockets and bombers, that were destroying GB. Now, the electronics back then was all about vacuum tubes, none of the semis we have today.
So, as the tests begun, they quickly discovered that regular tubes would simply turn into fine glass powder as shells were fired. Still, they were able to overcome all the obstacles and highly successful shells were produced, with very high kill probability, grossly superior to anything before.
Your typical AA shell will have muzzle exit velocity @ about 1400m/sec. It accelerates to that speed, from standstill, in probably under 5ms. Simply insane G and very hard to control.
I have my doubts about any AA weapon that requires direct hit to kill the target. Especially, at M10, as on-board guidance system acquires target within relatively short distance, controlling the direction with the minute accuracy required will be a tough task. Not having ability to control vector of thrusters (not having thrusters to begin with), will severly limit ability to change angle to attack targets that are going through evasive maneuvering.
For true "modern weapons" affectionados, we just might soon see the best SAMs ever designed (S300, latest Tors) put in action, for the 1st time ever, against cruise missiles and state-of-the art aircrafts (B1, B2, etc), all in heavy ECM.
That is if the Prez goes on to try to "democratize" yet another country, Iran. Judging by where 1/4 of US Navy is steaming to, won't be long .
TwoGuns wrote:

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