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China is now making a technological leap in all matters related to its People’s Liberation Army and its arsenal of new weapons and tactics.
As was discussed before, the Chinese leader has ordered the army to seek out technological solutions to become a superior force in the region.
Pictures circulating on social media indicate that China’s navy may have mounted an electromagnetic rail gun on a warship, a feat that has yet to be tested at sea.
A photo of a huge gun barrel situated at the bow of a People’s Liberation Army-Navy Type 072-II amphibious warfare ship popped up on the media.
According to spacewar.com and to a translation of a former Navy officer’s analysis, “everyone knows that the EM [electromagnetic] gun is under development, it’s said that it was jointly developed by BIT [Beijing Institute of Technology] and a certain institute from CASIC [China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation], I’m not so sure about this, but doesn’t matter, it’s developed by Chinese anyway.”
The officer, who has been involved in building the Navy’s vessels for decades, said the electromagnetic railgun was approved as part of a larger plan five or six years ago, so “it is reasonable as per schedule the prototype is doing aboard test.”
An electromagnetic rail gun fires projectiles at high speeds without the use of chemical propellants. According to the US Navy’s Office of Naval Research, “magnetic fields created by high electrical currents accelerate a sliding medal conductor, or armature, between two rails to launch projectiles at 5,850 kph.”
Since the rounds travel so fast, creating a huge amount of kinetic energy, there is no need for any extra explosives attached to each rounds – them smashing into their target is enough to destroy it.
US, Indian and Russian weapons developers have tested electromagnetic railgun prototypes, but the above ship would mark the world’s first warship to be equipped with the weapon.
Railguns will form the foundation of the electromagnetic artillery of the future. On warships, the guns can strike targets 300 to 400 km away, and orbiting the Earth in space.