Navy Tests Incredible Sci-Fi Weapon

  • Thread starter Evo
  • Start date
  • #1
Evo
Mentor
23,172
2,914
The U.S. Navy yesterday test fired an incredibly powerful new big gun designed to replace conventional weaponry aboard ships. Sci-fi fans will recognize its awesome power and futuristic technology.

The big gun uses electromagnetic energy instead of explosive chemical propellants to fire a projectile farther and faster. The railgun, as it is called, will ultimately fire a projectile more than 230 miles (370 kilometers) with a muzzle velocity seven times the speed of sound (Mach 7) and a velocity of Mach 5 at impact.

The test-firing, captured on video, took place Jan. 31 in Dahlgren, Va., and Navy officials called it the "world's most powerful electromagnetic railgun."
Good Grief.

http://www.livescience.com/technology/080201-electromagnetic-record.html

Then the Germans are working on evironmentally friendly explosives.

Environmentally Friendly Bombs Planned

After the bombs were detonated in the laboratory, G2ZT also proved as powerful than TNT, and HBT more powerful than TNT and comparable to RDX, said researcher Thomas Klapötke, a chemist at the University of Munich in Germany.

In initial experiments, G2ZT and HBT produced fewer toxic byproducts than common explosives. Still, they did generate some dangerous hydrogen cyanide gas. But mixing these compounds with oxidizers not only avoids making hydrogen cyanide, but also improved performance, Klapötke said.

These compounds have great potential, "especially for large caliber naval and tank guns," Klapötke added.
http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/20080527/sc_livescience/environmentallyfriendlybombsplanned [Broken]
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Daniel Y.
Railguns are pretty cool, I remember reading about them in SciAM or PopSci a year or two ago. There are some pretty cool railgun videos out on the web if you do a quick Youtube search. They can shoot up to about 52,000 feet per second...I want one.
 
  • #3
4,465
72
I've been around weapons much of my career and I got more and more disgusted by the idea. What purpose would a gadget like this serve? Sure, you can take a 700,000$ maverick, hit a target precisely and kill X$ worth of hardware and take Y human lives. You could also buy $20 dollars something worth of chemicals and sneak in your home made bomb on the right spot and and kill X$ worth of hardware and take Y human lives.

But why was it necesary to kill X$ worth of hardware and take Y human lives? Because both enemy camps were utterly convinced that the opponent were the worst crooks ever and the right thing to do is to spend 700,000$ or 20$ to be able to and kill X$ worth of hardware and Y take human lives. Why not spend 700,000$ or 20$ and buy that opponent a beer and have some laughs at the bar. You can't believe how effective that was in Europe after dropping the Berlin wall.
 
  • #4
Gokul43201
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
7,051
18
I'd go out and make a lot of enemies right now if they promised to spend $700,000 buying me beer!
 
  • #5
4,465
72
Alas, such a deep thought smottered by greed.
 
  • #6
Borek
Mentor
28,600
3,078
Environmentally Friendly Bombs
:rofl:
 
  • #7
Gokul43201
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
7,051
18
Alas, such a deep thought smottered by greed.
I'll share some of that beer with you...I promise!
 
  • #8
2,985
15
Anyone else notice the fire coming out the back of the rail gun shell?

I wonder what the recoil of the gun is?


From the article, it increases the guns range by an order of magnitude and eliminates the need to store explosive shells on board ships. Neato!
 
Last edited:
  • #9
Kurdt
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
4,812
6
I wish half as much effort went into not trying to kill each other in ever more powerful and ingenious ways.
 
  • #10
turbo
Gold Member
3,077
46
Anyone else notice the fire coming out the back of the rail gun shell?
That shot was of the rail-gun projectile emerging from a target. The target was vaporized, which is why you see flames. High-temperature, well-dispersed material in the presence of Oxygen has a tendency to burn very energetically. This includes vaporized metals.
 
  • #11
Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
18,979
2,322
I wonder what the recoil of the gun is?
It depends on the mass and acceleration of course. Back in the 1980's, I visited a facility that built rail guns. It was pretty interesting. I remember projectile velocities on the order of km/s.

I imagine the Navy will be using jacketed DU shells with penetrator nosecones in some cases.
 
  • #12
4,465
72
I'll share some of that beer with you...I promise!
Thanks!! I may have a Guinness later. Meanwhile you could use the rest of the money to explain that we are all in this together, regardless of race, ethnics or whatever. No reason to try and kill each other,
 
  • #13
Daniel Y.
Thanks!! I may have a Guinness later. Meanwhile you could use the rest of the money to explain that we are all in this together, regardless of race, ethnics or whatever. No reason to try and kill each other,
Sad, isn't it? How much did the government spend on cancer research in 2007? 5 billion dollars. How much on millitary? 600 billion. No one loves war like the US! :!!)
 
  • #14
2,985
15
Out of curiosity, how much did the rest of the world spend on cancer research?
 
  • #15
2,425
7
Out of curiosity, how much did the rest of the world spend on cancer research?
  • (1) This is really irrelevant
  • (2) This is misleading if you do not also ask how much did the rest of the world spend on military
 
  • #16
4,465
72
Sad, isn't it? How much did the government spend on cancer research in 2007? 5 billion dollars. How much on millitary? 600 billion. No one loves war like the US! :!!)
I think that this is an unfair comparison, facing reality. One of the wised quotes is from Eisenhower: "speak softly but carry a big stick". You can only offer your adversary a beer if you're convinced that there is a chance that he'll accept it. You'd need to find a reason to convince him why it's useless to continue hostilities. One of the major things there is to concede that you, yourself are reluctant to do that, (althought you could). Cyberweapons are most definitely the wrong signal.
 
Last edited:
  • #17
2,985
15
  • (1) This is really irrelevant
  • (2) This is misleading if you do not also ask how much did the rest of the world spend on military
Ok, then I'll also ask how much did the rest of the world spend on their military.

I dont see why its irrelevant to compare how much the US spent on cancer research compared to the rest of the world. If we are world leaders in cancer research, then THAT says something about the US.
 
  • #18
Ivan Seeking
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
7,260
301
I played with rail guns some years ago... what a blast; literally! I wonder what they are using for the energy storage. We used capacitors, but people were also playing with homopolar generators. In our case the ESR of the caps, and, interestingly, the firing switch, were the two biggest problems. It turns out that making large fast switches is a problem in its own right. Some people were using one-time switches, but we ended up using a rather clever approach: A low-current, high-voltage arc was used to establish a conductive path for the high-current, lower voltage discharge from the main capacitor bank, which worked pretty well. Anyway, fun stuff.
 
  • #19
Borek
Mentor
28,600
3,078
If we are world leaders in cancer research, then THAT says something about the US.
At the same time if you are world leaders in military spendings that TOO says something.

It leads nowhere - all these arguments can be easily reversed.

I am opening a beer as a sign of peace :wink:
 
  • #20
Ivan Seeking
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
7,260
301
Once again Andre derails a thread with a personal agenda.
 
  • #21
2,425
7
I dont see why its irrelevant to compare how much the US spent on cancer research compared to the rest of the world. If we are world leaders in cancer research, then THAT says something about the US.
Sure, this by itself is interesting. But let me take a fictious example : let us say that the rest of the world spends 100 times more on cancer research than on military, but that this is still less than what the US spends on cancer research. Mainly because the rest of the world
  • cares more about cancer than military, which is relevant to your argument
  • but does not have as much money as the US
Am I really out of my mind ?
 
  • #22
Ivan Seeking
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
7,260
301
responding in general: I am pretty sure that there were wars and weapons long before the US came along. And I am sick of listening to the people we have protected for decades whining about it. One of the reasons that other countries have small military budgets is that everyone knows they can rely on the US to do the dirty work for them.

So I agree with Andre: I'm tired of paying the bill for your safety.
 
  • #23
Borek
Mentor
28,600
3,078
Whoa, I didn't know, but I just checked some numbers out of curiosity. In 2006 the USA was responsible for 46 per cent of the world total military spendings... :eek:

Besides, I am still drinking that beer.
 
  • #24
Daniel Y.
Well:

"With expenditure of $455 billion, the United States accounted for almost half the global figure, more than the combined total of the 32 next most powerful nations, said SIPRI, which is widely recognized for the reliability of its data. (2005)" - I'd say we more than make up for our leading millitary spending.
 
  • #25
2,425
7
In our case the ESR of the caps, and, interestingly, the firing switch, were the two biggest problems.
Hey, why not use a superconductor switch ?
 

Related Threads on Navy Tests Incredible Sci-Fi Weapon

Replies
61
Views
3K
  • Last Post
Replies
15
Views
1K
  • Last Post
2
Replies
28
Views
6K
Replies
1
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
21
Views
738
  • Last Post
Replies
13
Views
718
  • Last Post
Replies
1
Views
859
  • Last Post
Replies
9
Views
3K
Replies
4
Views
1K
Top