Navy to Fire Electromagnetic Rail Gun at Sea


The U.S. Navy plans to test-fire a long-range electromagnetic weapon against a floating target at sea later this year as part of the fast-paced development of its new Electromagnetic Rail Gun.

The rail gun uses an electromagnetic current to fire a kinetic energy warhead up to 100 miles at speeds greater than 5,000 miles per hour -- a speed at least three times as fast as existing weapons.

In the upcoming exercise, the kinetic energy projectile will seek to hit, destroy or explode an at sea target from on-board the USNS Trenton, a Joint High Speed Vessel, service officials said.

The test shots, which will be the first of its kind for the developmental, next-generation weapon, will take place sometime later this year at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. The date hasn't yet been specified.

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