BAE, General Atomics, Raytheon Helping Navy Develop Electomagnetic Railgun

Photo: onr.navy.mil

BAE Systems is developing a long-range railgun for the Navy‘s surface ships capable of launching a projectile with 32 megajoule of energy at 5,600 mph.

The Navy announced Tuesday the Naval Surface Warfare Center‘s Dahlgren division started a two-month long test series of the Electro Magnetic Railgun prototype, the first industry-built electromagnetic railgun.

BAE and General Atomics are contracted to begin concept design for a next-generation thermally managed launcher system.

Raytheon is also contracted to develop a pulsed power system capable of meeting the firing rate goal.

Once installed on ships, the Navy said the railguns will be able to hit targets within 50 to 100 nautical miles.

The Navy video of thetest shows a metal projectile spewing out orange flames and leaving a trail of superheated air, before hitting a ply board target across the field.

The railgun launcher uses electricity instead of chemical propellants.

BAE will develop a thermal management systems for both the launcher and pulsed power to facilitate increased firing rates of up to 10 rounds per minute.

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