# Rail Gun

As we the importance of initial push required for the vehicles which travel a very high velocity and these factors affect the initial momentum of the high-velocity vehicle. To overcome these, an external push is applied through various sources like a railgun, a catapult but of these have their own application.

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A Railgun is a weapon which is used to launch high-velocity projectiles. It uses an armature and a pair of conductive rails. The armature slides and accelerates on parallel conductors, through electromagnetic effect. The electromagnetic effect is produced by the current that flows from one parallel conductor to armature to second parallel conductor, similar to a homopolar motor.

Railgun can launch a projectile at a velocity as high as 3 km/s velocity basically called as muzzle velocity. Application of railgun has its own advantage like the absence of explosives to launch the projectile, which again eliminates the storage of explosives as well as eliminating the cost compared to conventional method. Basically, the railgun uses pulses dc power supply.

Railgun consists of two parallel metal rails which are connected to a power supply but the circuit is open bacause both the rails are parallel is each other. When a conductive projectile is inserted for a launch, it completes the circuit for current flow from negative rail to positive rail through the conductive projectile. This produces an electric and a magnetic force which can be termed as a Lorentz force.

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Lorentz force tries to push the rails and projectile apart. But as the rails are fixed to the ground, movement or push effect is seen only on the projectile. Mathematically, the force will be proportional to the square of the magnitude of the current and inversely proportional to the distance between the conductors.

Railgun has their own applications like launch assist of spacecraft, weaponry, helical railgun, plasma railgun, inertial confinement nuclear fusion. But due to high velocities in terms of km/s, factors like material selection, heat dissipation, durability, the guidance of projectile.

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###### Rail Gun
Skyfi Labs Last Updated: 2022-04-18

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