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Projectile

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A projectile is any object projected into space
Space
Space is the boundless, three-dimensional extent in which objects and events occur and have relative position and direction. Physical space is often conceived in three linear dimensions, although modern physicists usually consider it, with time, to be part of a boundless four-dimensional continuum...

 (empty or not) by the exertion of a force
Force
In physics, a force is any influence that causes an object to undergo a change in speed, a change in direction, or a change in shape. In other words, a force is that which can cause an object with mass to change its velocity , i.e., to accelerate, or which can cause a flexible object to deform...

. Although a thrown baseball is technically a projectile too, the term more commonly refers to a weapon
Weapon
A weapon, arm, or armament is a tool or instrument used with the aim of causing damage or harm to living beings or artificial structures or systems...

.

For details of the mathematics surrounding projectile trajectory
Trajectory
A trajectory is the path that a moving object follows through space as a function of time. The object might be a projectile or a satellite, for example. It thus includes the meaning of orbit—the path of a planet, an asteroid or a comet as it travels around a central mass...

, see equations of motion.

Motive force


Arrow
Arrow
An arrow is a shafted projectile that is shot with a bow. It predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.An arrow usually consists of a shaft with an arrowhead attached to the front end, with fletchings and a nock at the other.- History:...

s, darts
Dart (missile)
Darts are missile weapons, designed to fly such that a sharp, often weighted point will strike first. They can be distinguished from javelins by fletching and a shaft that is shorter and/or more flexible, and from arrows by the fact that they are not of the right length to use with a normal...

, spear
Spear
A spear is a pole weapon consisting of a shaft, usually of wood, with a pointed head.The head may be simply the sharpened end of the shaft itself, as is the case with bamboo spears, or it may be made of a more durable material fastened to the shaft, such as flint, obsidian, iron, steel or...

s, and similar weapons are fired using pure mechanical force applied by another object; apart from throwing
Throwing
Throwing may refer to:*launching a projectile, especially by hand*Throw , a martial arts and grappling technique that involves off-balancing or lifting an opponent...

 without tools, mechanisms include the catapult
Catapult
A catapult is a device used to throw or hurl a projectile a great distance without the aid of explosive devices—particularly various types of ancient and medieval siege engines. Although the catapult has been used since ancient times, it has proven to be one of the most effective mechanisms during...

, slingshot
Slingshot
A slingshot, shanghai, flip, bean shooter or catapult is a small hand-powered projectile weapon. The classic form consists of a Y-shaped frame held in the off hand, with two rubber strips attached to the uprights. The other ends of the strips lead back to a pocket which holds the projectile...

, and bow
Bow (weapon)
The bow and arrow is a projectile weapon system that predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.-Description:A bow is a flexible arc that shoots aerodynamic projectiles by means of elastic energy. Essentially, the bow is a form of spring powered by a string or cord...

.

Other weapons use the compression or expansion of gases as their motive force.

Blowgun
Blowgun
"Blowpipe" and "blow tube" redirect here. For other uses of the terms, see GlassblowingA blowgun is a simple weapon consisting of a small tube for firing light projectiles, or darts....

s and pneumatic rifles use compressed gases, while most other gun
Gun
A gun is a muzzle or breech-loaded projectile-firing weapon. There are various definitions depending on the nation and branch of service. A "gun" may be distinguished from other firearms in being a crew-served weapon such as a howitzer or mortar, as opposed to a small arm like a rifle or pistol,...

s and firearm
Firearm
A firearm is a weapon that launches one, or many, projectile at high velocity through confined burning of a propellant. This subsonic burning process is technically known as deflagration, as opposed to supersonic combustion known as a detonation. In older firearms, the propellant was typically...

s utilize expanding gases liberated by sudden chemical reactions. Light gas gun
Light gas gun
The light-gas gun is an apparatus for physics experiments, a highly specialized gun designed to generate very high velocities. It is usually used to study high speed impact phenomena , such as the formation of impact craters by meteorites or the erosion of materials by micrometeoroids...

s use a combination of these mechanisms.

Railgun
Railgun
A railgun is an entirely electrical gun that accelerates a conductive projectile along a pair of metal rails using the same principles as the homopolar motor. Railguns use two sliding or rolling contacts that permit a large electric current to pass through the projectile. This current interacts...

s utilize electromagnetic fields to provide a constant acceleration along the entire length of the device, greatly increasing the muzzle velocity
Muzzle velocity
Muzzle velocity is the speed a projectile has at the moment it leaves the muzzle of the gun. Muzzle velocities range from approximately to in black powder muskets , to more than in modern rifles with high-performance cartridges such as the .220 Swift and .204 Ruger, all the way to for tank guns...

.

Some projectiles provide propulsion during flight by means of a rocket engine
Rocket engine
A rocket engine, or simply "rocket", is a jet engineRocket Propulsion Elements; 7th edition- chapter 1 that uses only propellant mass for forming its high speed propulsive jet. Rocket engines are reaction engines and obtain thrust in accordance with Newton's third law...

 or jet engine
Jet engine
A jet engine is a reaction engine that discharges a fast moving jet to generate thrust by jet propulsion and in accordance with Newton's laws of motion. This broad definition of jet engines includes turbojets, turbofans, rockets, ramjets, pulse jets...

. In military terminology, a rocket
Rocket
A rocket is a missile, spacecraft, aircraft or other vehicle which obtains thrust from a rocket engine. In all rockets, the exhaust is formed entirely from propellants carried within the rocket before use. Rocket engines work by action and reaction...

 is unguided, while a missile
Missile
Though a missile may be any thrown or launched object, it colloquially almost always refers to a self-propelled guided weapon system.-Etymology:The word missile comes from the Latin verb mittere, meaning "to send"...

 is guided
Guided Missile
Guided Missile is a London based independent record label set up by Paul Kearney in 1994.Guided Missile has always focused on 'the underground', preferring to put out a steady flow of releases and developing the numerous GM events around London and beyond....

. Note the two meanings of "rocket" (weapon and engine): an ICBM
Intercontinental ballistic missile
An intercontinental ballistic missile is a ballistic missile with a long range typically designed for nuclear weapons delivery...

 is a missile with rocket engines.

Ballistics
Ballistics
Ballistics is the science of mechanics that deals with the flight, behavior, and effects of projectiles, especially bullets, gravity bombs, rockets, or the like; the science or art of designing and accelerating projectiles so as to achieve a desired performance.A ballistic body is a body which is...

 analyze the projectile trajectory
Trajectory
A trajectory is the path that a moving object follows through space as a function of time. The object might be a projectile or a satellite, for example. It thus includes the meaning of orbit—the path of a planet, an asteroid or a comet as it travels around a central mass...

, the forces acting upon the projectile, and the impact that a projectile has on a target.

An explosion, whether or not by a weapon, causes the debris to act as multiple high velocity projectiles. An explosive weapon, or device may also be designed to produce many high velocity projectiles by the break-up of its casing, these are correctly termed fragments
Fragmentation (weaponry)
Fragmentation is the process by which the casing of an artillery shell, bomb, grenade, etc. is shattered by the detonating high explosive filling. The correct technical terminology for these casing pieces is fragments , although shards or splinters can be used for non-preformed fragments...

.

Delivery projectiles


Many projectiles, e.g. shell
Shell (projectile)
A shell is a payload-carrying projectile, which, as opposed to shot, contains an explosive or other filling, though modern usage sometimes includes large solid projectiles properly termed shot . Solid shot may contain a pyrotechnic compound if a tracer or spotting charge is used...

s, may carry an explosive charge or another chemical or biological substance. Aside from explosive payload, a projectile can be designed to cause special damage, e.g. fire (see also early thermal weapons), or poisoning (see also arrow poison).

Kinetic projectiles


A projectile which does not contain an explosive charge or any other kind of charge is termed kinetic projectile, kinetic energy weapon, kinetic energy warhead, kinetic warhead or kinetic penetrator. Typical kinetic energy weapons are blunt projectiles such as rock
Rock (geology)
In geology, rock or stone is a naturally occurring solid aggregate of minerals and/or mineraloids.The Earth's outer solid layer, the lithosphere, is made of rock. In general rocks are of three types, namely, igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic...

s and round shot
Round shot
Round shot is a solid projectile without explosive charge, fired from a cannon. As the name implies, round shot is spherical; its diameter is slightly less than the bore of the gun it is fired from.Round shot was made in early times from dressed stone, but by the 17th century, from iron...

s, pointed ones such as arrow
Arrow
An arrow is a shafted projectile that is shot with a bow. It predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.An arrow usually consists of a shaft with an arrowhead attached to the front end, with fletchings and a nock at the other.- History:...

s, and somewhat pointed ones such as bullet
Bullet
A bullet is a projectile propelled by a firearm, sling, or air gun. Bullets do not normally contain explosives, but damage the intended target by impact and penetration...

s. Among projectiles which do not contain explosives are those launched from railgun
Railgun
A railgun is an entirely electrical gun that accelerates a conductive projectile along a pair of metal rails using the same principles as the homopolar motor. Railguns use two sliding or rolling contacts that permit a large electric current to pass through the projectile. This current interacts...

s, coilgun
Coilgun
A coilgun is a type of projectile accelerator that consists of one or more coils used as electromagnets in the configuration of a synchronous linear motor which accelerate a magnetic projectile to high velocity...

s, and mass driver
Mass driver
A mass driver or electromagnetic catapult is a proposed method of non-rocket spacelaunch which would use a linear motor to accelerate and catapult payloads up to high speeds. All existing and contemplated mass drivers use coils of wire energized by electricity to make electromagnets. Sequential...

s, as well as kinetic energy penetrator
Kinetic energy penetrator
A kinetic energy penetrator is a type of ammunition which, like a bullet, does not contain explosives and uses kinetic energy to penetrate the target....

s. All of these weapons work by attaining a high muzzle velocity
Muzzle velocity
Muzzle velocity is the speed a projectile has at the moment it leaves the muzzle of the gun. Muzzle velocities range from approximately to in black powder muskets , to more than in modern rifles with high-performance cartridges such as the .220 Swift and .204 Ruger, all the way to for tank guns...

 (hypervelocity
Hypervelocity
The term hypervelocity usually refers to a very high velocity, approximately over 3,000 meters per second . In particular, it refers to velocities so high that the strength of materials upon impact is very small compared to inertial stresses. Thus, even metals behave like fluids under hypervelocity...

), and collide
Collision
A collision is an isolated event which two or more moving bodies exert forces on each other for a relatively short time.Although the most common colloquial use of the word "collision" refers to accidents in which two or more objects collide, the scientific use of the word "collision" implies...

 with their target, converting their kinetic energy
Kinetic energy
The kinetic energy of an object is the energy which it possesses due to its motion.It is defined as the work needed to accelerate a body of a given mass from rest to its stated velocity. Having gained this energy during its acceleration, the body maintains this kinetic energy unless its speed changes...

 into destructive shock waves and heat.

Some kinetic weapons for targeting objects in spaceflight
Spaceflight
Spaceflight is the act of travelling into or through outer space. Spaceflight can occur with spacecraft which may, or may not, have humans on board. Examples of human spaceflight include the Russian Soyuz program, the U.S. Space shuttle program, as well as the ongoing International Space Station...

 are anti-satellite weapon
Anti-satellite weapon
Anti-satellite weapons are designed to incapacitate or destroy satellites for strategic military purposes. Currently, only the United States, the former Soviet Union, and the People's Republic of China are known to have developed these weapons. On September 13, 1985, the United States destroyed US...

s and anti-ballistic missile
Anti-ballistic missile
An anti-ballistic missile is a missile designed to counter ballistic missiles .A ballistic missile is used to deliver nuclear, chemical, biological or conventional warheads in a ballistic flight trajectory. The term "anti-ballistic missile" describes any antimissile system designed to counter...

s. Since in order to reach an object in orbit it is necessary to attain an extremely high velocity, their released kinetic energy alone is enough to destroy their target; explosives are not necessary. For example: the energy of TNT is 4.6 MJ/kg, and the energy of a kinetic kill vehicle with a closing speed of 10 km/s is of 50 MJ/kg. This saves costly weight and there is no detonation
Detonation
Detonation involves a supersonic exothermic front accelerating through a medium that eventually drives a shock front propagating directly in front of it. Detonations are observed in both conventional solid and liquid explosives, as well as in reactive gases...

 to be precisely timed. This method, however, requires direct contact with the target, which requires a more accurate trajectory
Trajectory
A trajectory is the path that a moving object follows through space as a function of time. The object might be a projectile or a satellite, for example. It thus includes the meaning of orbit—the path of a planet, an asteroid or a comet as it travels around a central mass...

. Some hit-to-kill warheads are additionally equipped with an explosive directional warhead to enhance the kill probability (e.g. Israeli Arrow missile or U.S. Patriot PAC-3).

With regard to anti-missile weapons, the Arrow missile and MIM-104 Patriot PAC-2 have explosives, while the Kinetic Energy Interceptor
Kinetic Energy Interceptor
The Kinetic Energy Interceptor was a planned U.S. missile defense program whose goal was to design, develop, and deploy kinetic energy-based, mobile, ground and sea-launched missiles that could intercept and destroy enemy ballistic missiles during their boost, ascent and midcourse phases of flight...

 (KEI), Lightweight Exo-Atmospheric Projectile
Lightweight Exo-Atmospheric Projectile
The Lightweight Exo-atmospheric Projectile is a lightweight miniaturized kinetic kill vehicle designed to destroy incoming ballistic missiles both inside or outside the Earth's atmosphere...

 (LEAP, used in Aegis BMDS), and THAAD
Terminal High Altitude Area Defense
Terminal High Altitude Area Defense , formerly Theater High Altitude Area Defense, is a United States Army system to shoot down short, medium, and intermediate ballistic missiles in their terminal phase using a hit-to-kill approach. The missile carries no warhead but relies on the kinetic energy...

 do not (see Missile Defense Agency
Missile Defense Agency
The Missile Defense Agency is the section of the United States government's Department of Defense responsible for developing a layered defense against ballistic missiles. The agency has its origins in the Strategic Defense Initiative, which was established in 1983 and was headed by Lt...

).
A kinetic projectile can also be dropped from aircraft. This is applied by replacing the explosives of a regular bomb e.g. by concrete, for a precision hit with less collateral damage
Collateral damage
Collateral damage is damage to people or property that is unintended or incidental to the intended outcome. The phrase is prevalently used as an euphemism for civilian casualties of a military action.-Etymology:...

. A typical bomb has a mass of 900 kg and a speed of impact of 800 km/h (220 m/s). It is also applied for training the act of dropping a bomb with explosives. http://www.fas.org/news/iraq/1999/10/991007-iraq.htm This method has been used in Operation Iraqi Freedom and the subsequent military operations in Iraq
Iraq
Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

 by mating concrete-filled training bombs with JDAM GPS guidance kits, to attack vehicles and other relatively "soft" targets located too close to civilian structures for the use of conventional high explosive bombs.

A Prompt Global Strike
Prompt Global Strike
Prompt Global Strike is a United States military effort to develop a system that can deliver a precision conventional weapon strike anywhere in the world within one hour, in a similar manner to a nuclear ICBM. Potential scenarios that would require such a fast response might include an impending...

 may use a kinetic weapon. A kinetic bombardment
Kinetic bombardment
A kinetic bombardment is the act of attacking a planetary surface with an inert projectile, where the destructive force comes from the kinetic energy of the projectile impacting at very high velocities...

 may involve a projectile dropped from Earth orbit.

A hypothetical kinetic weapon that travels at a significant fraction of the speed of light, usually found in science fiction, is termed a relativistic kill vehicle
Relativistic kill vehicle
A relativistic kill vehicle or relativistic bomb is a hypothetical weapon system sometimes found in science fiction. The details of such systems vary widely, but the key common feature is the use of a massive impactor traveling at a significant fraction of light speed to strike the target...

 (RKV).

Wired projectiles


Some projectiles stay connected by a cable to the launch equipment after launching it:
  • for guidance: wire-guided missile
    Wire-guided missile
    A wire-guided missile is a missile that is guided by signals sent to it via thin wires connected between the missile and its guidance mechanism, which is located somewhere near the launch site. As the missile flies, the wires are reeled out behind it...

     (range up to 4,000 meters)
  • to administer an electric shock, as in the case of a Taser
    Taser
    A Taser is an electroshock weapon that uses electrical current to disrupt voluntary control of muscles. Its manufacturer, Taser International, calls the effects "neuromuscular incapacitation" and the devices' mechanism "Electro-Muscular Disruption technology"...

     (range up to 10.6 meters); two projectiles are shot simultaneously, each with a cable.
  • to make a connection with the target, either to tow it towards the launcher, as with a whaling harpoon
    Harpoon
    A harpoon is a long spear-like instrument used in fishing to catch fish or large marine mammals such as whales. It accomplishes this task by impaling the target animal, allowing the fishermen to use a rope or chain attached to the butt of the projectile to catch the animal...

    , or to draw the launcher to the target, as a grappling hook
    Grappling hook
    A grappling hook is an anchor with multiple hooks , attached to a rope; it is thrown, dropped, sunk, projected, or fastened directly by hand to where at least one hook may catch and hold. Generally, grappling hooks are used to temporarily secure one end of a rope. They may also be used to dredge...

     does.

Typical projectile speeds


Projectile Speed
Speed
In kinematics, the speed of an object is the magnitude of its velocity ; it is thus a scalar quantity. The average speed of an object in an interval of time is the distance traveled by the object divided by the duration of the interval; the instantaneous speed is the limit of the average speed as...

 
Specific kinetic energy = (Velocity^2) / 2
object falling 1 m 4.43 m/s 15.948 km/h 14.5 ft/s 9.9 mph 9.8 J/kg
object falling 10 m 14 m/s 50.4 km/h 46 ft/s 31 mph 98 J/kg
thrown club
Club (weapon)
A club is among the simplest of all weapons. A club is essentially a short staff, or stick, usually made of wood, and wielded as a weapon since prehistoric times....

 (expert thrower)
40 m/s 144 km/h 130 ft/s 90 mph 800 J/kg
object falling 100 m 45 m/s 162 km/h 150 ft/s 100 mph 980 J/kg
refined (flexible) atlatl
Atlatl
An atlatl or spear-thrower is a tool that uses leverage to achieve greater velocity in dart-throwing.It consists of a shaft with a cup or a spur at the end that supports and propels the butt of the dart. The atlatl is held in one hand, gripped near the end farthest from the cup...

 dart (expert thrower)
45 m/s 162 km/h 150 ft/s 100 mph 1,000 J/kg
80-lb-draw pistol crossbow
Crossbow
A crossbow is a weapon consisting of a bow mounted on a stock that shoots projectiles, often called bolts or quarrels. The medieval crossbow was called by many names, most of which derived from the word ballista, a torsion engine resembling a crossbow in appearance.Historically, crossbows played a...

 bolt
58 m/s 208.8 km/h 190 ft/s 130 mph 1.7 kJ/kg
War arrow
Arrow
An arrow is a shafted projectile that is shot with a bow. It predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.An arrow usually consists of a shaft with an arrowhead attached to the front end, with fletchings and a nock at the other.- History:...

 shot from a 150 lbs medieval warbow
English longbow
The English longbow, also called the Welsh longbow, is a powerful type of medieval longbow about 6 ft long used by the English and Welsh for hunting and as a weapon in medieval warfare...

 
63 m/s 228.2 km/h 208 ft/s 141 mph 2 kJ/kg
paintball
Paintball
Paintball is a sport in which players compete, in teams or individually, to eliminate opponents by tagging them with capsules containing water soluble dye and gelatin shell outside propelled from a device called a paintball marker . Paintballs have a non-toxic, biodegradable, water soluble...

 fired from marker
91 m/s 327.6 km/h 300 ft/s 204 mph 4.1 kJ/kg
175-lb-draw crossbow
Crossbow
A crossbow is a weapon consisting of a bow mounted on a stock that shoots projectiles, often called bolts or quarrels. The medieval crossbow was called by many names, most of which derived from the word ballista, a torsion engine resembling a crossbow in appearance.Historically, crossbows played a...

 bolt
97 m/s 349.2 km/h 320 ft/s 217 mph 4.7 kJ/kg
air gun
Air gun
An air gun is a rifle , pistol , or shotgun that fires projectiles by means of compressed air or other gas, in contrast to a firearm, which burns a propellant. Most air guns use metallic projectiles as ammunition. Air guns that only use plastic projectiles are classified as airsoft...

 pellet
Pellet (air gun)
An air gun pellet is, for the most part, a non-spherical projectile designed to be fired from an air gun. But this is not always the case.Pellets differ from bullets used in firearms because of the pressures encountered; firearms operate at pressures of thousands of atmospheres, while airguns...

 6 mm BB
BB gun
BB guns are a type of air gun designed to shoot projectiles named BBs after the birdshot pellet of approximately the same size. These projectiles are usually spherical but can also be pointed; those are usually used for bird hunting. Modern day BB guns usually have a smoothbore barrel, with a bore...

 
100 m/s 360 km/h 328 ft/s 224 mph 5 kJ/kg
rifle
Rifle
A rifle is a firearm designed to be fired from the shoulder, with a barrel that has a helical groove or pattern of grooves cut into the barrel walls. The raised areas of the rifling are called "lands," which make contact with the projectile , imparting spin around an axis corresponding to the...

 bullet 4.5 mm
150 m/s 540 km/h 492 ft/s 336 mph 11 kJ/kg
air gun
Air gun
An air gun is a rifle , pistol , or shotgun that fires projectiles by means of compressed air or other gas, in contrast to a firearm, which burns a propellant. Most air guns use metallic projectiles as ammunition. Air guns that only use plastic projectiles are classified as airsoft...

 pellet (magnum-power air rifle)
305 m/s 878.4 km/h 1,000 ft/s 545 mph 29.8 kJ/kg
9x19 mm (bullet of a pistol
Pistol
When distinguished as a subset of handguns, a pistol is a handgun with a chamber that is integral with the barrel, as opposed to a revolver, wherein the chamber is separate from the barrel as a revolving cylinder. Typically, pistols have an effective range of about 100 feet.-History:The pistol...

)
340 m/s 1224 km/h 1,116 ft/s 761 mph 58 kJ/kg
12.7x99 mm
.50 BMG
The .50 Browning Machine Gun or 12.7×99mm NATO is a cartridge developed for the Browning .50 caliber machine gun in the late 1910s. Entering service officially in 1921, the round is based on a greatly scaled-up .30-06 cartridge...

 (bullet of a heavy machine gun
Machine gun
A machine gun is a fully automatic mounted or portable firearm, usually designed to fire rounds in quick succession from an ammunition belt or large-capacity magazine, typically at a rate of several hundred rounds per minute....

)
800 m/s 2,880 km/h 2,625 ft/s 1,790 mph 320 kJ/kg
German Tiger I 88mm  (tank shell) 810 m/s 2,899 km/h 2,657 ft/s 1,812 mph
5.56x45 mm
5.56x45mm NATO
5.56×45mm NATO is a rifle cartridge developed in the United States and originally chambered in the M16 rifle. Under STANAG 4172, it is a standard cartridge for NATO forces as well as many non-NATO countries. It is derived from, but not identical to, the .223 Remington cartridge...

 (standard bullet used in many assault rifles)
920 m/s 3,312 km/h 3,018 ft/s 2,058 mph 470 kJ/kg
125x1400 mm (APFSDS
Kinetic energy penetrator
A kinetic energy penetrator is a type of ammunition which, like a bullet, does not contain explosives and uses kinetic energy to penetrate the target....

 - tank
Tank
A tank is a tracked, armoured fighting vehicle designed for front-line combat which combines operational mobility, tactical offensive, and defensive capabilities...

 penetrator)
1,700 m/s 6,120 km/h 5,577 ft/s 3,803 mph 1.4 MJ/kg
2kg Tungsten Slug (from Experimental Railgun
Railgun
A railgun is an entirely electrical gun that accelerates a conductive projectile along a pair of metal rails using the same principles as the homopolar motor. Railguns use two sliding or rolling contacts that permit a large electric current to pass through the projectile. This current interacts...

)
3,000 m/s 10,800 km/h 9,843 ft/s 6,711 mph 4.5 MJ/kg
ICBM
Intercontinental ballistic missile
An intercontinental ballistic missile is a ballistic missile with a long range typically designed for nuclear weapons delivery...

 reentry vehicle 
up to 4 km/s up to 14,000 km/h up to 13,000 ft/s up to 9,000 mph up to 8 MJ/kg
projectile of a light gas gun
Light gas gun
The light-gas gun is an apparatus for physics experiments, a highly specialized gun designed to generate very high velocities. It is usually used to study high speed impact phenomena , such as the formation of impact craters by meteorites or the erosion of materials by micrometeoroids...

 
up to 7 km/s up to 25,000 km/h up to 23,000 ft/s up to 16,000 mph up to 24 MJ/kg
satellite in low earth orbit
Low Earth orbit
A low Earth orbit is generally defined as an orbit within the locus extending from the Earth’s surface up to an altitude of 2,000 km...

 
8 km/s 29,000 km/h 26,000 ft/s 19,000 mph 32 MJ/kg
Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle
Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle
Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle can refer to two related missile defense concepts:* Most common: the Raytheon-manufactured interceptor component with subcontractor Aerojet of the U.S...

 
closing speed roughly 10 km/s ~36,000 km/h ~33,000 ft/s ~22,000 mph ~50 MJ/kg
projectile (e.g. space debris
Space debris
Space debris, also known as orbital debris, space junk, and space waste, is the collection of objects in orbit around Earth that were created by humans but no longer serve any useful purpose. These objects consist of everything from spent rocket stages and defunct satellites to erosion, explosion...

) and target both in low earth orbit
Low Earth orbit
A low Earth orbit is generally defined as an orbit within the locus extending from the Earth’s surface up to an altitude of 2,000 km...

 
closing speed 0 - 16 km/s ~58,000 km/h ~53,000 ft/s ~36,000 mph ~130 MJ/kg

See also


  • Atlatl
    Atlatl
    An atlatl or spear-thrower is a tool that uses leverage to achieve greater velocity in dart-throwing.It consists of a shaft with a cup or a spur at the end that supports and propels the butt of the dart. The atlatl is held in one hand, gripped near the end farthest from the cup...

  • Ballistics
    Ballistics
    Ballistics is the science of mechanics that deals with the flight, behavior, and effects of projectiles, especially bullets, gravity bombs, rockets, or the like; the science or art of designing and accelerating projectiles so as to achieve a desired performance.A ballistic body is a body which is...

  • Gunpowder
    Gunpowder
    Gunpowder, also known since in the late 19th century as black powder, was the first chemical explosive and the only one known until the mid 1800s. It is a mixture of sulfur, charcoal, and potassium nitrate - with the sulfur and charcoal acting as fuels, while the saltpeter works as an oxidizer...

  • Impact depth
    Impact depth
    The physicist Sir Isaac Newton first developed this idea to get rough approximations for the impact depth for projectiles traveling at high velocities.-Newton's approximation for the impact depth:...

  • Kinetic bombardment
    Kinetic bombardment
    A kinetic bombardment is the act of attacking a planetary surface with an inert projectile, where the destructive force comes from the kinetic energy of the projectile impacting at very high velocities...

  • Projectile point
    Projectile point
    In archaeological terms, a projectile point is an object that was hafted to a projectile, such as a spear, dart, or arrow, or perhaps used as a knife....

  • Projectile use by living systems
    Projectile use by living systems
    Although projectiles are commonly used in human conflict, projectile use by living systems other than humans is relatively rare.-Liquid projectiles:...

    • Arrow
      Arrow
      An arrow is a shafted projectile that is shot with a bow. It predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.An arrow usually consists of a shaft with an arrowhead attached to the front end, with fletchings and a nock at the other.- History:...

    • Dart
      Dart (missile)
      Darts are missile weapons, designed to fly such that a sharp, often weighted point will strike first. They can be distinguished from javelins by fletching and a shaft that is shorter and/or more flexible, and from arrows by the fact that they are not of the right length to use with a normal...

    • Missile
      Missile
      Though a missile may be any thrown or launched object, it colloquially almost always refers to a self-propelled guided weapon system.-Etymology:The word missile comes from the Latin verb mittere, meaning "to send"...

    • Spear
      Spear
      A spear is a pole weapon consisting of a shaft, usually of wood, with a pointed head.The head may be simply the sharpened end of the shaft itself, as is the case with bamboo spears, or it may be made of a more durable material fastened to the shaft, such as flint, obsidian, iron, steel or...

    • Torpedo
      Torpedo
      The modern torpedo is a self-propelled missile weapon with an explosive warhead, launched above or below the water surface, propelled underwater towards a target, and designed to detonate either on contact with it or in proximity to it.The term torpedo was originally employed for...

  • Range of a projectile
    Range of a projectile
    right|thumb|250 px|The path of this projectile launched from a height y0 has a range d.In physics, assuming a flat Earth with a uniform gravity field, a projectile launched with specific initial conditions will have a predictable range. As in Trajectory of a projectile, we will use:The following...

  • Space debris
    Space debris
    Space debris, also known as orbital debris, space junk, and space waste, is the collection of objects in orbit around Earth that were created by humans but no longer serve any useful purpose. These objects consist of everything from spent rocket stages and defunct satellites to erosion, explosion...

  • Toypedo
    Toypedo
    The Toypedo is a hand-launched non motorized projectile developed by Swim Ways. It is a streamlined, fin-stabilized hydrodynamic design resembling a torpedo or a sonar device called a pinger, and painted a variety of bright colors in newer models or molded of brightly-colored rubber a là the Super...

  • Trajectory of a projectile
    Trajectory of a projectile
    In physics, the ballistic trajectory of a projectile is the path that a thrown or launched projectile will take under the action of gravity, neglecting all other forces, such as friction from air resistance, without propulsion....


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