U.S. Navy Began Testing Advanced Version of Long-Range Electromagnetic Weapon

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July 16, 2019 | Originally published by Date Line: July 16 on

The U.S. Navy has confirmed that it began testing an advanced version of long-range electromagnetic weapon at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR), NM.

The new weapon system is a long-range electromagnetic railgun that fires projectiles using electricity instead of chemical propellants.

Last month, the U.S. Navy has reported that engineers and technicians at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Port Hueneme Division’s (NSWC PHD”s) WSMR detachment began testing an electromagnetic railgun on May 15.

The test was the first firing series of the newly installed weapon at the site. Subsequent tests will be scheduled post performance-data analysis to advance the weapon’s commissioning.

“The installation of the railgun began earlier this year and required a large effort for the mount, gun, power controls, displays, and functional ties into the range,” said Site Manager John Winstead. “The object of the test was essentially a shakedown of the newly-installed mount with accompanying power containers, controls, and a fully functional execution team.”

Four rounds were fired with full diagnostics and verification. Initial estimated test dates were reduced from 3 to 2 days due to the success of the firings.

“The tests were very successful and alleviated the need to have further installation and check-out testing required for verification,” said Winstead.