General Atomics’ 10 Mega Joule Railgun System Moves to Dugway For Testing
SAN DIEGO — General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) announced in a July 31 release that its new 10 Mega Joule (MJ) medium-range multimission railgun system has completed final assembly and factory acceptance test in preparation for transport to Dugway Proving Ground in Utah to begin testing.
The 10 MJ railgun system has been designed and built by GA-EMS to provide multimission, multidomain capability with greater flexibility and a smaller footprint for ship, land and mobile platforms.
“The 10 MJ railgun system has our third-generation railgun launcher, and includes our fifth-generation pulsed power system and a new mounting system that allows the launcher to elevate and train for better targeting,” said Nick Bucci, vice president for Missile Defense and Space Systems at GA-EMS. “This represents a leap forward in advancing railgun technologies, offering reduced size and weight for the launcher, twice the energy density in a significantly reduced pulsed power footprint, and more capable hypersonic projectiles. We’ll continue to develop and mature these technologies, perform risk reduction, and test under real-world conditions to ultimately deliver a more capable, effective and cost-efficient solution to counter future threats.”
The railgun weapon system integrates the High Energy Pulsed Power Container (HEPPC), 10 MJ launcher, hypersonic hybrid missile, and fire control technologies. The HEPPC utilizes GA-EMS next-generation railgun capacitors and a new approach to packaging and distribution of the energy in a smaller footprint than existing pulsed power solutions. This reduces the number of pulsed power containers required to launch the guided projectiles or hybrid missiles. The HEPPC provides additional capabilities to test GA-EMS hypersonic projectiles, which contain a Guidance Control Unit with guidance, navigation, and control software and a complex control actuation system.
Successful projectile component testing was completed earlier this year, with multiple firings at launch accelerations over 30,000 Gs. The testing also demonstrated a continuous two-way data link between the in-flight projectiles and the ground station over an open range that supports the fire control solution.