At its most basic form the railgun is a linear accelerator using standing wave acceleration along a number of cylindrical superconductive electrodes surrounding a barrel.[2b] For suits like the Broadside Battlesuit and vehicles like the Hammerhead Gunship, this technology is used to propel a solid slug at hypervelocity, capable of penetrating even the toughest enemy armour.[2a]
Hammerhead Railguns are also capable of firing a special bundle of sophisticated submunitions useful against large groups of enemies.[2b] The solid slug fired by these weapons will easily punch through the armoured front glacis of a Space Marine Predator[3a] but will not penetrate the same spot on a Baneblade, though multiple hits are capable of causing some damage to the side armour.[3b]
The heavy Railguns found on Mantas and Tiger Shark variants are terrifying weapons, capable of taking out Super-heavy vehicles and even Warhound Scout Titans. They are also capable of firing a special submunition round, guided by a Drone-level intelligence and fitted with stabilising fins for extra lift and range in an atmosphere. While useful against ground targets, their primary purpose is for targeting the weakspots in enemy starship armour since they lack the same penetrating power as the standard slug.[4a][4b]
Despite Tau advances in superconductor technology, Railguns mounted on Tau Starships are of such monstrous size and require such large amounts of energy to fire that they are grouped into batteries and fired one barrel at a time sequential order, ensuring the first barrel is loaded and ready before it is charged again. They are considered comparable to Imperial Weapons Batteries.
- Railguns in the real world.
- 1: Codex: Tau, Pg. 17
- 2: Codex: Tau Empire
- 3: Courage and Honour (Novel) by Graham McNeill
- 4: Imperial Armour Volume Three - The Taros Campaign
- 5: Battlefleet Gothic Armada, Pg. 98
|One-Handed Weapons||Honour Blade • Pulse Pistol|
|Two-Handed Weapons||Pulse Rifle • Pulse Carbine • Rail Rifle • Ion Rifle • Longshot Pulse Rifle|
|Battlesuit Weapons||Airbursting Fragmentation Projector • Burst Cannon • Cyclic Ion Blaster • Flamer • Fusion Blaster|
|Other Vehicle Weapons||Ion Cannon • Railgun • Seeker Missile • Smart Missile System • Quad Ion Turret|
|Auxiliary Weapons||Kroot Hunting Rifle • Kroot Gun • Kroot Rifle • Neutron Blaster|
|Grenades||EMP Grenade • Photon Grenade|