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Thursday, January 31, 2008

U.S. Navy Testing Hypercannon Railgun

This is exceedingly cool!

According to the Register and several other news sources, the U.S. Navy is testing an electromagnetic railgun or hypercannon.

The article says this railgun can fire at Mach 7 and hit a target 200 miles away with a speed still as high as Mach 5. That's absolutely devastating!

This kind of stuff has been dreamed of in sci-fi for years. They use railguns on the Earth ships in Stargate SG-1 to put a world of hurt on the aliens.

These real-life railguns would offer some distinctive advantages over conventional weaponry. For one thing, they'd arrive on target a lot quicker than a conventional shell. They would also eliminate the need for gunpowder to fire it, making the ships themselves much safer without all that explosive material around.

They do have their drawbacks, such as the barrels which have a hard time standing such tremendous power being channeled through it. But I'm sure we'll get it figured out.

It's reassuring to the the U.S. still on the cutting edge of military hardware. The world is still plenty full of bad guys out there, despite what some think, and we need every advantage to keep the folks at home safe.

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