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Controls and diagnostics on a fuseless railgun for solid hydrogen pellet acceleration

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5 Author(s)
T. L. King ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Illinois Univ., Urbana, IL, USA ; J. Zhang ; R. G. Haywood ; W. C. Manns
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A two-stage railgun system has been built, incorporating several controls and diagnostics, some including unique features to account for the fact that the projectile is a frozen hydrogen pellet for fusion reactor refueling. A timing circuit has been developed to monitor projectile breech and muzzle velocities and to automatically trigger a sequence of events critical for effective plasma armature railgun operation. This circuit can initiate electrical breakdown of the propellant gas directly behind an incoming projectile, thus enabling fuseless operation. It also triggers a streak camera and a flashlamp for photographing the arc and the outgoing projectile, respectively. The automatic timing circuit is expandable and has been extended to incorporate a trigger for transaugmentation. The timing circuit is immune to mistriggering due to electromagnetic interference or fragmentation of the fragile hydrogen pellets

Published in:

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