Discarding Armature and Barrel Optimization for a Cannon Caliber Electromagnetic Launcher System
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The authors detail the optimization and baseline design of the discarding metal armature and electromagnetic railgun developed for the US Army Armament Research Development and Engineering Center and US Marine Corps sponsored Cannon Caliber Electromagnetic Launcher program. The primary goals of this program have been to defeat specified targets at 1500 and 3000 m range utilizing an electromagnetic launcher system weighing less than 5000 lb. An optimization algorithm was developed to integrate the armor-penetrating subprojectile with a discarding armature/sabot forming an integrated launch package. This algorithm coupled integrated launch package electromagnetic and structural design requirements to launcher design parameters including rail resistance per unit length and inductance per unit length as a function of launcher rail geometric and structural configurations. Pulsed power supply size and mass requirements were subsequently estimated from launcher performance predictions.