Whoa…the Navy now has a brand new friend that’s going to scare the pants off anyone that comes near it. And you better believe this thing packs an enormous amount of power.
The Office of Naval Research has officially (and quietly) released footage of this brand new gun. And it’s probably unlike anything you’ve ever seen.
Not only is the mere look of this incredible weapon intimidating, but the power behind it is insane. That’s because the new weapon is an all-electric railgun, and it has the power to fire back-to-back shots at Mach 6. That’s pretty impressive.
According to Guns.com:
The undated footage comes from Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division, named after the famous 19th Century admiral whose “Dahlgren Gun” changed naval warfare leading to his nickname as the “Father of American naval ordnance.” And the electromagnetic railgun may be just as revolutionary.
As noted by the ONR’s page on the weapon, the 32-megajoule prototype launcher uses magnetic fields created by electrical currents to rapidly accelerate a projectile cradling armature between two rails– hence the term. This shoots a 35-pound kinetic projectile that carries no explosive to distances as far as 100-miles away at speeds of 4,500 mph. That is a couple of times faster than any current artillery and is inexpensive compared to a missile of the same range. Further, since the shells are inert, it simplifies storage and transport, enabling ships using them to not only buy them cheap, but stack them deep.
Currently, the railgun is able to fire approximately once every 10 seconds or so. However, according to the article, the Navy is looking to boost their railgun’s firing to as much as 10 rounds per minute. If this is going to work, the gun must be able to recharge incredibly quickly. The Navy says these changes will need to occur by the year 2018.
The Navy is also taking the railgun’s impressive size and power into consideration. Due to the weapon’s sheer size, weight, and capabilities it can only mount on select large ships. And this will require the ships to have a LOT of extra juice to power up the weapon.
Check out the video to see this monstrous railgun in action.