From Research to Railgun
From Research to Railgun: Revolutionary
Weapon at Future Force EXPO
From Office of Naval Research Public Affairs.
Arlington, Virginia – (NNS)
– January 13, 2015 – The Electromagnetic Railgun-a weapon that will play a
significant role in the future of the U.S. Navy-will be on display to the public
for the first time on the East Coast Feb. 4-5 at the Naval Future Force Science
and Technology (S&T) EXPO in Washington, D.C., officials at the Office of Naval
Research (ONR) announced Jan. 13.
Electromagnetic railgun prototype
on display aboard USS Millinocket (JHSV 3)
With Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert set as the
event's keynote speaker on Feb. 4, the EXPO promises to be a window into the
future of the U.S. Navy, showcasing the latest advances in power projection and
"This year's Expo will showcase the naval portfolio of innovative
breakthrough technologies that are shaping our warfighting tactics today and
changing the way our Sailors and Marines will operate in the future," said Chief
of Naval Research (CNR) Rear Adm. Mat Winter. "The Electromagnetic Railgun is
among several disruptive capabilities that the Naval Research Enterprise is
championing to ensure a dominant, capable and relevant naval force for the
Experts from ONR, Naval Sea Systems Command and BAE Systems, Inc., will be on
hand at the display and in breakout sessions to address the technical
developments of the weapon.
The Railgun program continues to move toward scheduled at-sea testing in
2016. Its revolutionary technology relies on electricity instead of traditional
chemical propellants, with magnetic fields created by high electrical currents
launching projectiles at distances more than 100 nautical miles-and at speeds
that exceed Mach 6, or six times the speed of sound.
That velocity allows the weapon's projectiles to rely on kinetic energy for
maximum effect, and reduces the amount of high explosives needed to be carried
on ships. It also minimizes the dangers of unexploded ordnance remaining on the
"The Electromagnetic Railgun brings significant technological advances to our
Sailors and Marines," said Roger Ellis, program manager at ONR. "As the system
moves forward along its planned schedule from the laboratory launcher, we've
achieved breakthroughs in compact power and gun design, and will test the next
phase of prototype at both sea- and land-based sites in 2016 and 2017."
The Naval Future Force S&T EXPO is the Navy's premier event to share
information, discuss research opportunities and build science and technology
partnerships between the Navy and Marine Corps, industry and academia. Formerly
titled the Science and Technology Partnership Conference, the biennial event
draws thousands of attendees from around the world.
In addition to the CNO and CNR, speakers will include Dr. Robert Ballard,
acclaimed discoverer of the Titanic; Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research,
Development and Acquisition) Sean Stackley; Nobel Prize winners; leaders from
the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the Office of the Secretary of
Defense, the Air Force, Army and many more.
The event also will feature unique one-on-one opportunities for dialogue in
breakout sessions with ONR program managers.
More information about the event, and how to register, can be found here:
ONR provides the science and technology necessary to maintain the Navy and
Marine Corps' technological advantage. Through its affiliates, ONR is a leader
in science and technology with engagement in 50 states, 70 countries, 1,035
institutions of higher learning and 914 industry partners. ONR employs more than
1,000 people, comprising uniformed, civilian and contract personnel, with
additional employees at the Naval Research Lab in Washington, D.C.
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