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[~ot]magnets was Re: [FT] Railgun Goals

From: Thomas Anderson <thomas.anderson@u...>
Date: Fri, 27 Nov 1998 17:21:08 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: [~ot]magnets was Re: [FT] Railgun Goals

On Fri, 27 Nov 1998, Thomas Anderson wrote:
> On Fri, 27 Nov 1998, Andrew & Alex wrote:
> > A short, large diameter barrel is
> > easier to manufacture and aim than a long, thin barrel.
> in the case of coils, this force is outwards. hence, at large fields,
> electromagnets tend to explode.

in a remarkable and sad case of synchronicity, Prof Nicholas Kurti, who
worked on magnetic cooling here, died on tuesday; i read his obituary in
the Independent today, where this is quoted from his memoirs:

"I built the solenoid and with great expectation late one evening I
pressed the switch which sent a current of 40 amperes through the coil.
The result was spectacular - a deafening explosion, the apparatus
disappeared, all windows were blown in our out, a wall caved in, and
ended my pioneering experiment on liquid hydrogen cooled coils!"

Kurti did this work in the 1930s after fleeing to the UK to escape the


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