Q:

How powerful is the electromagnetic railgun tested by the U.S. Navy?

A:

Quick Answer

In a test conducted by the U.S. Navy in 2014, a railgun projectile reached Mach 6, and traveling at 4,500 mph, precisely hit its target over 100 miles away. Operated by a single individual, the electromagnetic railgun system achieves projectile speeds of up to 5,000 mph powered only by electricity.

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Full Answer

Potentially capable of achieving a muzzle velocity of Mach 7, the electromagnetic railgun fires projectiles that weigh less than 30 pounds. This produces firepower capable of accelerating projectiles, without the use of dangerous explosives, that travel farther and faster than any other existing weapon. The hypervelocity weapon uses the kinetic energy generated by its speed to destroy targets on land, at sea and in the air.

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