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Title: Low voltage arc formation in railguns

Abstract

A low voltage plasma arc is first established across the rails behind the projectile by switching a low voltage high current source across the rails to establish a plasma arc by vaporizing a fuse mounted on the back of the projectile, maintaining the voltage across the rails below the railgun breakdown voltage to prevent arc formation ahead of the projectile. After the plasma arc has been formed behind the projectile a discriminator switches the full energy bank across the rails to accelerate the projectile. A gas gun injector may be utilized to inject a projectile into the breech of a railgun. The invention permits the use of a gas gun or gun powder injector and an evacuated barrel without the risk of spurious arc formation in front of the projectile.

Inventors:
 [1]
  1. Livermore, CA
Issue Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
OSTI Identifier:
866423
Patent Number(s):
4706542
Assignee:
United States of America as represented by United States (Washington, DC)
Patent Classifications (CPCs):
F - MECHANICAL ENGINEERING F41 - WEAPONS F41B - WEAPONS FOR PROJECTING MISSILES WITHOUT USE OF EXPLOSIVE OR COMBUSTIBLE PROPELLANT CHARGE
DOE Contract Number:  
W-7405-ENG-48
Resource Type:
Patent
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
voltage; formation; railguns; plasma; established; rails; projectile; switching; current; source; establish; vaporizing; fuse; mounted; maintaining; below; railgun; breakdown; prevent; ahead; formed; discriminator; switches; energy; bank; accelerate; gas; gun; injector; utilized; inject; breech; permits; powder; evacuated; barrel; risk; spurious; front; gas gun; breakdown voltage; current source; /89/124/310/

Citation Formats

Hawke, Ronald S. Low voltage arc formation in railguns. United States: N. p., 1987. Web.
Hawke, Ronald S. Low voltage arc formation in railguns. United States.
Hawke, Ronald S. Thu . "Low voltage arc formation in railguns". United States. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/866423.
@article{osti_866423,
title = {Low voltage arc formation in railguns},
author = {Hawke, Ronald S},
abstractNote = {A low voltage plasma arc is first established across the rails behind the projectile by switching a low voltage high current source across the rails to establish a plasma arc by vaporizing a fuse mounted on the back of the projectile, maintaining the voltage across the rails below the railgun breakdown voltage to prevent arc formation ahead of the projectile. After the plasma arc has been formed behind the projectile a discriminator switches the full energy bank across the rails to accelerate the projectile. A gas gun injector may be utilized to inject a projectile into the breech of a railgun. The invention permits the use of a gas gun or gun powder injector and an evacuated barrel without the risk of spurious arc formation in front of the projectile.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {1987},
month = {1}
}

Patent:

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