PRC/PLAN Laser and Rail Gun Development Thread


Biscuits

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Registered Member
Not really. China does not need the same military budget as the USA because it does have as widespread of a military and it is not engaged in multiple wars.
Besides, even if you gave them more money, what would happen? In a lot of areas time is more important than money. It is not like money is a magical cure for all problems. The PLAN presently has a similar or higher naval build rate to the US Navy for example. The only exception is possibly in the carrier sector. But their main issue is still the technological deficit not the production rate. More money would not fix that problem.

Once China has developed leading edge weapons platforms then it will become sensible to build those at a high enough rate. Just look at the Type 052 program as an example. It took them several iterations to get something decent and once they had a viable platform in the Type 052D then they built that in significant numbers. I suspect the same will happen with the J-16 as can be seen by the yearly production of that platform. The J-20 still has a low production rate in comparison because the platform is not mature yet. So it does not make sense to manufacture it at a higher rate.

The laser and rail gun platforms, for example, will only be attained once the PLAN has ships with IEP. i.e. the fabled Type 052E and Type 055A.
More money = more manufecturing lines, more dockyards making warships.

There will always be new technology to explore, a higher budget won't stop them from doing that. It would help them transform prototypes and concepts into usable tools. The 002 being built now would apparently use IEP. These would be the largest IEP ships ever designed, lack of widespread IEP seems to be a prime example of budgetary constraints holding back the fleet's combat potential (through not by much, 055s have excess power due to large on board generators compared to similar ships)

Railgun itself is a cost cutting measure compared to expensive arsenal ship concepts.
 
your second point inside
#543 Biscuits, Yesterday at 9:24 PM
"Last but not least, in a naval duel, the railgun can fire continuously and keep up pressure on an enemy destroyer, adding another supersonic projectile to the mixture of YJ-18s and 12s."

kinda answers this:
  • at the mid range (100 or so km), I'm completely at loss while thinking about anti-shipping fire:
    the railgun fire would need to be corrected, I guess by observing the splashes, by
    a drone with an EOTS or something, flying over the horizon, but if you're still with me,
    you can tell me why they wouldn't just shoot an AShM instead and did a mid-course
    correction since supposedly there would the drone in place, communicating??
#261 Jura, Feb 2, 2017

as there could be a barrage by missiles and by projectiles, then

anyway a railgun would do high-angle shots at a long distance:

so? as for anti-shipping fire at 100 km (LOL if there were such thing),
an approximation would be an equilateral triangle with the side of 100 km, and a projectile traveling it with M5 speed on average,
meaning its time of flight would be almost two minutes;
if the target ship sprinted at 30 knots, in the meantime she'd move by about one mile, so I think an IR seeker would be needed in the shell

(an alternative would salvo firing LOL and corrections by a ballistic computer based on the splashes around zigzagging target as 100+ years ago)

in the process found charts of the ballistic curve I've reconstructed
(from
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)
years ago, hope nobody minds I'll preserve them here:



would be cool to see the profile for a railgun huh
 
for what you envisioned in
#549 Biscuits, Today at 8:39 AM
Yes, it targeted three (3) radar sites.

In a hypothetical conflict with a third world nation, a 052(mod. railgun) can easily park itself 300km from the coast. Then it can fire ~600 rounds vs all sorts of things, military trucks, government buildings, airfields, artillery etc. While the 052 is shooting, a 908 can head out from a nearby base, filled to the brim with railgun rounds, giving it even more reloads.

The Vulcano rounds only have a range of 100km vs 300 ish for the railgun. That would put the 052 at risk from primitive AShM.

Such rounds could be more expensive than railguns, given that they are semi guided mini missiles.
(firing at 300 km), please state
  1. the railgun's power (a number in MJ), and
  2. its projectile weight (a number in kg)
 

Bhurki

Junior Member
Registered Member
for what you envisioned in
#549 Biscuits, Today at 8:39 AM

(firing at 300 km), please state
  1. the railgun's power (a number in MJ), and
  2. its projectile weight (a number in kg)
A projectile of 10 kg fired at Mach 7 yields railgun's power of about 27 MJ.
The energy bleed at about 300 km would be too much, so the effective range would much likely be under 200 km. At range of about 200 km however, projectile will be able to retain around 15% of its muzzle energy. ( cross sectional areas in x & y taken as 0.02m² and 0.1m², drag (ballistic) coefficient taken from a standard artillery shell)
 
...
would be cool to see the profile for a railgun huh
all I found would be this (of presumably 64 MJ, of course nonexistent):


Proposed Rail Gun Operation. An interesting tidbit about this image is that it shows that the projectile does not "turn over" at apogee. This is because the projectile is above sensible atmosphere and therefore has little or no atmospheric force acting upon it. It is not until the projectile is on its downward arc that it enters atmosphere thick enough to make the fins "bite" and thus move it to the point-down attitude. Although this image shows a 250 nm range, the latest information from NAVSEA is now showing a maximum range of about 110 nm with a 32MJ weapon. Image copyrighted by Office of Naval Research.
 

Anlsvrthng

Senior Member
Registered Member
all I found would be this (of presumably 64 MJ, of course nonexistent):
A projectile on that height gives away the position of the ship to half of a continent .
Every S band radar in 1000 km will see the projectile, and can calculate the approximate position of the gun.
The projectile is metal, and the size / features are close to S/X band radar wavelength.
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It worth to compare the detect ability of it with the P-800:
It ejected to few 100 m , turn horizontal, and ignite the booster.
 
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Nutrient

Junior Member
Registered Member
China does not need the same military budget as the USA because it does [not] have as widespread of a military and it is not engaged in multiple wars.
Also, in any war against the US, China would have the advantage of defense. (In a Taiwan independence scenario, the mainland would be striking the small island, but when the US responded, the mainland would be defending.)

Defense is cheaper; China can do fine with just a fraction of the US's military budget.

The US invasion of Iraq cost $2 to $3 trillion. Now imagine how much an attack on China would cost. I doubt China needs to spend a lot in order to make a US attack extremely expensive for the US.
 

Bhurki

Junior Member
Registered Member
all I found would be this (of presumably 64 MJ, of course nonexistent):

The parabola that you posted gives trajectory of a projectile with initial velocity of 2000m/s at a 60° angle to horizontal
(Based on chart range =350km, max alt=160km) if power given is 64 MJ, weight of fired shell will be 32 kg.
The numbers that are achievable as of yet ( public knowledge) are about 25 MJ(Blitzer)
See post #554
Anyways, i think we should stick to posts about PRC railgun development rather than general discussions about the tech.
 
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inside the CNN story
New year, new weapons: Are China's latest science fiction or battle ready?
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:

Naval rail gun
Reports in state-run media from early January said
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on its warships.
In theory, railguns will fire metal shells using an electrical rather than an explosive charge -- a potentially revolutionary development in weapons technology that would render gunpowder obsolete. With a range over 100 miles, the projectile would travel at up to nine times the speed of sound (6,850 mph). It would also use kinetic rather than explosive energy to destroy its target.
With no explosive residue, the electromagnetic railgun is expected to be more accurate and easier to maintain than conventional artillery.
Photos of what was said to be a railgun mounted on a PLA Navy landing ship circulated around the internet early this month.
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quoted a Chinese naval expert, Li Jie, as saying the photos mean China's railgun may be in the final stages of testing. The weapon could be destined for use on China's brand-new Type 55 destroyers, among the most sophisticated on the planet, when operational, the report said.
Verdict: Plausible. The US Navy, too, has been working to perfect a railgun, and had the jump on China in development, said Schuster, the military analyst at Hawaii Pacific University. But China is catching up fast, he says, and may beat the US to actual deployment. Both could have working railguns at sea in less than a decade, he says.
funny how their "analyst" is coy about the status of the US stuff Aug 30, 2018
May 8, 2018
now the latest is inside of
Navy Making Room for Railguns in Next Warship, But No Extra Investments
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