San Diego General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems Inc. said Jan. 3 that it received a defense contract to supply capacitors for a non-lethal device able to stop vehicles.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The device is called the Pre-Emplaced Vehicle Stopper, which the Pentagon calls PEVS. It can be used at vehicle checkpoints and for other force-protection applications.
When a vehicle rolls over a set of contacts, the system delivers a short, intense electrical pulse. GA-EMS says the jolt can disable the vehicle’s electrical components without harming the passengers inside.
The contract came from the Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate through the Department of Defense Ordnance Technology Consortium.
“We continue to shape capacitor technologies to address an expanding range of applications, including the advancement of directed energy weapon systems with non-lethal effects,” Nick Bucci, vice president of missile defense and space systems at GA-EMS, said in a prepared statement.
“The PEVS system has the potential to support multiple missions, and be mobile as operations change, making a compact footprint a critical requirement. We’re employing advanced capacitor technologies and manufacturing techniques to develop significantly higher energy density capacitors that will provide reliable, pulsed power output in a small, easy-to-transport package.”
GA-EMS capacitors are also used in railguns, which can launch projectiles at six times the speed of sound. Objects traveling at that speed don’t need explosives to be destructive on impact.