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    Russian scientists have successfully tested the country's first railgun, which relies on electromagnetic forces rather than explosives or propellant, according to RIA Novosti

    Faster Speeding Bullets: Russia Test-Fires Its Own Railgun

    © Photo: scientificrussia.ru
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    A team of Russian scientists has successfully tested the country's first railgun, which relies on electromagnetic forces rather than explosives or propellant, according to RIA Novosti.

    Railguns are powered by electromagnetic conductors instead of gunpowder or explosives, allowing them to inflict major damage; Russian scientists have successfully test-fired the country's first such weapon.

    According to scientists, they managed to use the device to fire bullets at an incredibly fast velocity of 11 kilometers per second (regular military guns fire bullets at about 2 km/s). This is something that they said is enough to allow an object to overcome gravity and reach the Earth's orbit, and almost enough to allow it to enter outer space.

    A photograph taken from a high-speed video camera during a  railgun firing at the Naval Surface Warfare Center on January 31, 2008
    © Wikipedia/ U.S. Navy
    A photograph taken from a high-speed video camera during a railgun firing at the Naval Surface Warfare Center on January 31, 2008

    As weapons, railguns could prove to be especially effective in that the high kinetic energy possessed by the projectiles they fire using electromagnetic forces allows them to ably penetrate objects such as armor or ship bulkheads.The US Navy has been working on the creation of such weaponry since the mid-2000s, when the first prototypes of such systems were installed on board a new generation of destroyers.

    Earlier this year, Franz Klintsevich, the first deputy of the Russian Upper House's Defense and Security Committee, said that "even if the Americans achieve a breakthrough in this direction, Russia does not have to answer with symmetrical measures." He added that Russia has "many opportunities it could employ if needed, in order not to allow the power balance in the world to change."

    Related:

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    US Achieves Breakthrough in Electromagnetic Railgun Test - Contractor
    US Defense Contractor Successfully Tests Electromagnetic Railgun
    Tags:
    railgun, explosives, scientists, weapons, Russia
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    • support
      All that is missing is an explosive charge in the round but there is no chemical explosive which can avoid detonating upon launch owing to the associated G-forces.

      Perhaps resonant plasma created in the instant of launch within the round which itself is a magnetic "bottle" might be an option. On impact the "bottle" is no longer magnetic as it is distorted by impact and thus releases the contained plasma energy on the target.

      There is no science fiction to this. You use devices with magnetic fields within magnetic fields all the time. How do you suppose an automobile alternator works, as but one example?

      Having a 25 MWe generator switching on and off may as well do double duty. That is a lot of fuel used per second. Maybe a bank of trickle-discharge capacitors might be a more efficient fuel-saving method for generating the power for such an array.

      LATER: After some extremely slow and arduous calc's but this pseudo-mathematician in training, magnetizing the round may in fact improve its performance characteristics as an added bonus.

      Over pizza in 2004 in Queens, Dr. Branover had scribbled a bit on a paper napkin to show that magnetizing flight surfaces and the vanes of blade straighteners on turbine engine air intakes improves flow characteristics so actually I am cribbing a bit from an old Russian master :)
    • C Han
      You can have your own 25Mw generator easily to purchase via Alibaba used from Pariba Brazil.

      www.alibaba.com/product-detail/25-MW-Steam-Turbine-Generator-used-_109311214.html

      There is always a cost like Lavoisier said: "nothing is created, all is transformed".

      Have to study if the costs outweigh the return.
    • avatar
      kuei12
      So, instead of providing power to 18,750 homes in america, they decided to fire 1 bullet.
    • avatar
      michael
      Verne would be happy! :)
    • avatar
      tobi.gelando
      Bravo Russia ! I do believe that this rail gun needs still modification but it shows that Russia has a better state of the art tech as the USA
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