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Mid-push plasma armatures for long-rod electromagnetic gun projectiles

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5 Author(s)
Dethlefsen, R. ; Maxwell Lab. Inc., San Diego, CA, USA ; Ingermanson, R. ; McNab, I. ; LeVine, F.
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Ongoing research is addressing the concept of mid-pushing plasma armatures in large-bore rail guns. Testing began with solid Lexan projectiles which posed finite risk to the gun in the event of launch package breakup. Designs progressed to the launching of actual separating mid-riding aluminum sabots with steel projectiles representative of actual armor-penetrating flight-configured projectiles. The concept of launching mid-pushing sabots with plasma armatures was validated with these tests. A technique for deconvolution of signals from B-dot probes was developed to determine current distributions in the plasma armature. The technique has been applied to B-dot data from several tests. The results indicate a general tendency of the current to move aft of the projectile tail. This is fortunate, as it reduces the likelihood of arc attachment to conducting sabot/projectile structures and reduces the danger of generating extremely high unbalanced lateral pressures on the aft portion of the launch package

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Magnetics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:29 ,  Issue: 1 )