Wednesday, 25 April 2012

A to Z: V is for VRF Gauss Gun

A cryogenically cooled, rapid fire support weapon, the VRF Gauss gun fires a 4 mm, 4 gram needle bullet to velocities of 4500 metres per second with an effective rate of fire of 4000 rounds per minute …Traveller Book 4 Mercenary.

Very much like modern weapon systems such as the Phalanx, the VRF Gauss Gun has a 30,000 round ammunition bay, loaded from 1000 round hoppers. For Cr 200,000 this little buzzsaw can be yours. At Tech Level 10, the VRF Gauss Gun puts all other support weapons out of business and, unlike weapon systems like the Phalanx or the Vulcan, the Gauss Gun only weighs two tons.

Like the smaller Gauss Rifle, the VRF Gauss Gun is an electromagnetic linear accelerator, using a series of magnetic coils to accelerate the 4 mm needle. With no propellant to burn, one would think that a Gauss Rifle should be silent when fired – making it the perfect sniper weapon. It was pointed out to me years ago that these bullets are travelling at multiples of the speed of sound, so one would assume that one would hear a crack, or multiple cracks as the bullet exits the barrel of the weapon at supersonic speeds. I’m not a ballistics guy, so I only assume that this is correct – makes a nice effect, though.