Investigation of flat capacitor discharge electromagnetic launchers
In this thesis, studies of flat or pancake type electromagnetic launcher systems are described. The studies involved the development of several numerical models, and are supported throughout by experimental investigation. The models were based on a coaxial filamentary division technique, and the results they provided were compared with those from a commercial electromagnetic finite element modelling package. They were used to investigate some of the many possible launcher structures and power supply arrangements, as part of a wide-ranging parametric study. The aim of this thesis was to gain an insight into the factors that affect the performance of the launchers. Several different techniques were implemented to reduce the computation time. Practical experimentation provided a clear demonstration of the launcher technology, and supplied valuable model validation data. To aid the experimental work new projectile speed and yaw measurement systems were developed, and these were supported by results from a high-speed camera. A novel dual projectile launcher was tested, and was shown to improve the launch efficiency and to operate at higher energies, due to the reduction in drive coil recoil. Projectile deformation was investigated in both solid discs and flat annular projectiles.