Modular Pulse Power System (WIP)

I’ve always been a fan of high voltage systems; something about that rush of electricity just gets me on the edge of my seat.
And projects like this only make me do more dangerous things; if you see me out with the high voltage warnings, it’s probably going to be some fun stuff:
Flat Ring Launcher

That’s a flat aluminum washer being launched by inducing eddy currents in it; it’s filed at 240 frames per second (FPS), and at 1.8 meters to that piece of wood works out to roughly 14.4 meters per second (m/s)
This is not full power; we blew the launching rig apart on our way to getting there. This is also just a single capacitor on what will, in the end way down the line, be a large array feeding a set of rails mounted to the roof of my truck (Railgun v3.0). So why isn’t this project called Railgun? Well, I want this capacitor bank to be usable for a lot of things: Blast Art, Can / Quarter crushing, Electrokinetic Acceleration, Plasma Accelerators, and good 'ole fashion making big sparks because one can.

To make all of these things work reliably in a large bank means making modules that take into account their needs; a Railgun needs a longer pulse length than an eddy current ring launcher, and the can crusher has to run at a lower energy than the quarter system to prevent blowing the looser coils apart.

I started with a system from Information Unlimited to get off the ground; it’s got it’s problems, and the original jigs it came with are simply too weak for a lot of the energy being run through (we did blow one apart after all). I remade some over the years with things like heavier gauge wires, and better mounts, but in the end what will make a bigger difference will be things like adjustable inductance to prevent a fast rise time, and a Marx style capacitor configuration where one can “bolt on” additional capacitor modules without having to change anything in the configuration.

I’ll post updates here as I go along; in the interim here’s a photo of things we destroyed last Saturday when I had the rig outside.



How are you firing the output? Just out of curiosity…IGBT’s?

Ahh, Information Unlimited! Amazing they are still around but when you sell mostly paper plans, that is pretty profitable. I have several of their plans, mostly lasers though.

You would have loved Fred’s warehouse of lovelies! Have tons of ceramic caps up to 40KV. We need to really resume the Marx Generator class!

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I am still interested in the Marx generator class whenever that project gets underway again.

The hard part is finding Glass/Ceramic HV resistors, don’t remember the values 1M-10M. My google fu is pretty weak lately. Let me find my notes.

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In non-railgun mode basically a triggered spark gap; simple, low resistance once fired, and heavy current ready. In railgun mode you actually bypass it and use the injection of the projectile into the rails as your switch.

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