They built a balanced piston valve. Very heavy-duty steel, they've run it as high as 500psi. The barrel is evacuated before the shot. There's a nice shadowgraph image of the shock wave from the supersonic baseball.
Discussion of the concept:
The shock waves start here:
Show us your pneumatic spud gun! Discuss pneumatic (compressed gas) powered potato guns and related accessories. Valve types, actuation, pipe, materials, fittings, compressors, safety, gas choices, and more.
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- Staff Sergeant 2
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I saw that video. It's completely awesome! It's the ultimate pneumatic cannon and pushes the performance to the extreme by doing a variety of special things to get there. I loved it. I wonder how a hybrid cannon would do. I'm thinking a simpler and cheaper hybrid could be made that would out perform the pneumatic. I wonder why they don't explore that route. They have focused on pneumatic cannons with evacuated barrels. Maybe for legal reasons? If that were the case, they wouldn't have made a combustion spudgun video, which they did. I say they up their game and build a simple, beautiful, sexy looking piston hyrbid cannon out of heat treated 4140 at around 200kpsi yield and bust loose at around 20X.