Al Jazeera: Each cruise missile contains 15 kg of silver

11C1P

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15 kilogram = 482.26119853 ounces[troy]

@ $24/troy oz = $11,574.27 just in silver!
 

ancona

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I'm not absolutely certain, but i think they use silver because of it's greater conductivity and because they operate at 400 Hz instead of 50 or 60 Hz. I know that our fighter planes and transport planes all use 400 cycles because I did a lot of work at NAS Key West at Hangar A-981 and in the AIMD [Aircraft Intermediate Maintenance Depot] and asked a basket-load of questions. I also got some massive cash when we recycled all the metals. We gutted out the entire facility of 35,000 s.f., taking it down to the block wall and roof trusses. The bus bars alone brought in around 50K.
 

Aubuy

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Old report from when we were bombing Libya:

http://ausbullion.blogspot.com/2011/03/1650kg-of-silver-fired-at-libya-to.html

Now you can impress your friends with trivia when the Tomahawks start raining down on Syria.
I have a feeling it would be cheaper to make the entire Tomahawk out of silver, and maybe even gold. Anybody want to guess how much a Tomahawk weighs and how much it costs to blow up a tent? :nugget:

It would make more sense to shower them with paper dollars. Then at least their economy would collapse. :shrug:
 

11C1P

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Well all we should have to do is drop leaflet bombs declaring areas as gun free zones.
 

rblong2us

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I was amused to learn that the RAF had various different warheads for their guided weapons.

I was particularly drawn to the concrete option, which apparently was very good for popping into the sunroof of a motor vehicle carrying 'high value' targets ....

Less collateral damage apparently and no one seemed in the least concerned about the delivery cost of a lump of concrete.
 

11C1P

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I was amused to learn that the RAF had various different warheads for their guided weapons.

I was particularly drawn to the concrete option, which apparently was very good for popping into the sunroof of a motor vehicle carrying 'high value' targets ....

Less collateral damage apparently and no one seemed in the least concerned about the delivery cost of a lump of concrete.

The contents of the package might be more affordable, the delivery charges still aren't going to be cheap.
 

DCFusor

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For the record, I've been doing electronics since ~ 1961. Silver is indeed used for things like BNC connectors, plating on RF coils and the like. The reason is, even silver sulfide (the tarnish) is still conductive - not great, but better than open-circuit. It's a thin plating no matter what. It's only a little better (but heavier for the same conductivity) than copper. They don't use much, and now use gold on contact fingers etc, because it doesn't corrode in the first place.

At high frequencies (higher than 400hz, more like radio stuff) all electricity travels on the skin of the conductor - it's called the "skin effect" for that reason, and it's why NOTHING is made solid silver, period. It has lousy mechanical characteristics compared to other things for one. It's why ham radio operators who build their own transmitters sometimes use copper tubing - the hollow middle doesn't make any difference, and the hardcore ones then silver plate the outside.

I have a very strong suspicion that someone is mixing up milligrams (or micrograms) with kilograms here. I have for example a box you can barely lift of silver plated stuff - it probably has much less than one ounce of silver in it. And in any aircraft, weight is a big deal - they do a lot to minimize it so as to have more room for payload. I was privy to quite a bit of weapons design, and never heard of anything made of solid silver, which is what it'd take to get to those weights.

Concrete would make for a fine kinetic kill, actually, but they'd probably use something smaller and more expensive, like a carbide (like they do in armour piercing bullets). Thing is, for a kinetic kill, you have to hit the target - close doesn't really count, so that's a little suspicious too. Even the best stuff still has a CEP.

In a debate with a weapons designer I once had, who was proposing nuclear bunker busters in a circular argument, I suggested they simply orbit flying telephone poles of WC (tungsten carbide) and de-orbit them in sync over whatever they wanted to seismically crush, like pro blasters do with timed charges to make the pressure waves all add at some spot. It doesn't matter if some Iraqi is a couple hundred meters under concrete if you hit it right - the air side on the bottom spalls off concrete and destroys the contents just fine, from the shock wave. We see this also in space when something hits something else - junk flies off the far side, even at asteroid/moon sizes.

The circular argument went like this - we need it nuclear because a conventional dropped bomb won't penetrate far, and especially nukes, since they are fragile, so we need the power.

And if we do what Doug suggested, they'll think we've nuked them.

I rolled on the floor, literally - if we did what he was suggesting, we would have actually nuked them. Some argument!

Note, neither of us are in that biz now and haven't been for a long time.
 

pmbug

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...
I have a very strong suspicion that someone is mixing up milligrams (or micrograms) with kilograms here. ... I was privy to quite a bit of weapons design, and never heard of anything made of solid silver, which is what it'd take to get to those weights.
...
I did a bit of searching and there doesn't seem to be any definitive source to confirm or correct the report. I did find a 7 page discussion on kitco that had some interesting comments:

... The bulk of the silver is supposedly in the Silver Oxide batteries that are the best batteries to have in such a high tech piece of weapon. ...
~~~
... Eagle Picher is one of the suppliers of silver-oxide batteries for military use.

Now, if we go their silver-oxide battery page, we see batteries that weigh up to 205lbs each. Now I did some deductive reasoning to see if the claim may be true... so hear me out.

Fact:

- A tomahawk missile weight 2900lbs.
- Missiles use high capacity silver-oxide batteries
- silver oxide battery supplier has one that is 205lbs (eagle picher)
- Silver-oxide battery recyclers give you 75% of spot
- Silver-oxide battery recyclers pay you $40 per avp pound
- Therefore 1lb of silver-oxide batteries equals about $53 of silver
- So... 205lb battery has about $10,865 worth of silver


$10865 worth of silver today is about = 388 troy ounces
~~~
 

Potemkin

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15 kilogram = 482.26119853 ounces[troy]

@ $24/troy oz = $11,574.27 just in silver!
That's all in a single missile! :silver:

The debris will be in powder state, so collecting the silver remains will be almost impossible for anyone.

15 kg/Tomahawk? Well that means they're using silver in the military industry heavily.

Arms races, booming military equipment production will push the price of silver higher!

I see the pros of bombing Syria: higher silver prices. But I still vote for PEACE!
 

ancona

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I'll defer to DC on this one. I am sure the missiles are built using the finest materials government money can buy, and since each type is sole-source acquisition, prices are simply negotiated, so whatever the vendor can justify in material and labor, he gets to mark up with his agreed upon general and administrative overhead [G&A in business parlance] plus a handsome and guaranteed profit. Time and materials, sole source procurement is the holy grail of government contracting for a reason, and that reason is money; exclusively. We are working with an 8-a contractor because she gets to negotiate no-competition work directly with the government. Under this program, we get a task order up to three million dollars, and we simply negotiate our price. With this woman and the 8-A program, we can command as much as double what a competitive bidding process could generate, and it's completely legal; even encouraged. the program is why a lot of the best demolition and de-construction packages never "hit the street" in a competitive process. We decided to slay that dragon once and for all. We're in a joint venture [JV] with her, and must renew it after three jobs, but can do so nearly indefinitely. She's a little over a year in to a 9 year program, so it's off to the races. In todays contracting climate, it is actually the best thing that could possibly have happened. For years I derided the program as a giveaway, but have recently decided that if I can't fight them I'd just join them. I figure if Uncle Sugar wants to get fucked, it may as well be by me.
 

rblong2us

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Concrete would make for a fine kinetic kill, actually, but they'd probably use something smaller and more expensive, like a carbide (like they do in armour piercing bullets). Thing is, for a kinetic kill, you have to hit the target - close doesn't really count, so that's a little suspicious too. Even the best stuff still has a CEP.
The logic was that if the guidance failed, the concrete 'warhead' would hopefully kill less nearby innocents.
At the time there was a lot of concern here in the Uk regarding 'collateral damage' aka blowing up children.

Think were over it now as blowing up foreign children doesnt really get much of a mention these days ..........
 

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I'd bet that along with almost the entire industry, the missile guys went to primary (not rechargeable) Li batteries, for the power/weight advantage. These aren't the rechargeable guys like in my Volt, but simple primary cells with 3-4 times the power per size, and a bigger yet advantage in weight.

In flight, most missile electronics are run via a tiny turbine that siphons off a little of the thrust gas - there is no need for a huge battery - the little turbine weighs less/watt.

If NASA gets the weights of a huge shuttle (or whatever large) missile conserved to the ounces level, what do you think they work on for missiles that weigh a tiny fraction of that?

I'm well aware that it can take the military 10 years to go from idea to deployment, but this isn't a hard one - it's just an engineering change order. The Li cells are so superior in every way to silver oxide it's a real no brainer. It's even getting hard to get the little sr-44 cells for my calipers - they've gone to alkaline lr-44's at nearly all the suppliers. Li-ion for everything else. I looked for ni-cads the other day for some old solar outdoor lights I have - hard to find even those now. Battery tech has been moving right along...

Now, this IS a guess, but it's not based on BS. More on how these guys work/think and what the advantage would be for their mission. They don't miss much in these airframe systems if they can squeeze in a little more performance.
 
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