Armature Shape Optimization of an Electromagnetic Launcher Including Contact Resistance

Ceylan D., Gudelek M. U., KEYSAN O.

IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON PLASMA SCIENCE, vol.46, no.10, pp.3619-3627, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 46 Issue: 10
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1109/tps.2018.2845948
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.3619-3627
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Barrel and pulsed power supply modules are two crucial parts of an electromagnetic launcher (EML), in terms of overall efficiency. One of the most important features of the barrel side is the armature geometry. In this paper, the shape of the armature of an EML with 10-MJ current pulse generator, 1000-kA peak current, and 4.5-ms excitation time is optimized by using independent variables to define the exact geometry of the armature. The main goal is to maximize the muzzle kinetic energy of the projectile with 300-g mass including pressure and contact current constraints. Finite-element method (FEM) is used to calculate the muzzle kinetic energy of the EML for different armature geometries. Genetic algorithm is used as the optimization method. Since the contact resistance between the armature and the rail affects the distribution of contact current density, contact resistance is also modeled in FEM. It is observed that armature shape optimization study increases the muzzle kinetic energy to 596 kJ and the muzzle velocity to 1993 m/s.