MINNEAPOLIS, Feb. 17 (UPI) -- The U.S. Navy has contracted BAE Systems for the company to develop and demonstrate an electromagnetic railgun.
British company BAE was awarded the 30-month contract from the Office of Naval Research. Under the $21 million deal, BAE will develop an electromagnetic railgun to support the Navy's strategic mission objectives as part of the Innovative Naval Prototype Railgun program.
Electromagnetic railguns use "electrical energy instead of chemical energy to launch projectiles … (with a) range in excess of 200 nautical miles," the release said.
BAE officials say as part of the deal, they will be expected to develop a launcher for demonstration by 2011.
"This electromagnetic railgun contract is a continuation of BAE Systems' dedication to delivering advanced technology for tomorrow's sailors," Jim Schoppenhorst, BAE Systems vice president of Navy programs, said in a statement.