A Chinese Navy ship has been spotted with a weapons system that resembles a deadly electromagnetic railgun. If true, it could mean that the communist nation has become the first country in the world to develop and install the system on a ship.
The purported weapon was spotted recently on the People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) Haiyang Shan landing ship, according to a report in The Drive. Typically, the Type 072III-class vessel packs a 37mm cannon, but in this case, there was a massive gun turret.
Piqued by the turret’s appearance, onlookers started snapping images of the ship, which was anchored at the Wuchang Shipyard in Hubei province in central China. Some of those photographs were uploaded online and started doing the rounds, with people speculating if it was a railgun.
An electromagnetic railgun uses a magnetic field to fire long-range projectiles, with a range beyond 150km, at an approximate speed of 7,000kmph. The US Navy is already working on the weapon and has showcased its capabilities in a couple of tests. However, the system has not made it to any of its ships, with previous reports suggesting the country might have lost interest in the project.
What the hell is this? pic.twitter.com/sQDAsHd7A3
— dafeng cao (@xinfengcao) January 31, 2018
The recently spotted Chinese weapon looks very similar to the American railgun, particularly in terms of its overall shape and size, according to The Drive report. Its mount was completely enclosed and a large barrel extended out of it, which is typical for launching hypervelocity projectiles. The 500-tonne load capacity of the landing ship also makes it a good candidate for a railgun to be installed on the vessel. (Read more from “Deadly Electromagnetic Railgun Reported on Chinese Navy Ship” HERE)