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# In very long-range artillery the guns are often set at an elevation angle of 50 to 70 degrees, instead of the 45 degree angle which, according to elementary mechanics, is supposed to guarantee the maximum range. Why?

Question #24051. Asked by Impress us. (Nov 07 02 10:10 PM)

Kainantu

The enemy may be closer than the maximum range.
If they used the 45 degrees angle
the projectile would go beyond the target
and defeat the purpose of firing it.

 Nov 08 02, 1:00 AM
Socrates

When a shell is fired at a steep angle with a great initial velocity, it reaches an altitude 25-30 miles where the air is very rarefied and offers little resistance. The shell may then fly 80-100 miles through the stratosphere before veering steeply back to earth. Were the shell to be fired at a 45 degree angle, its tragectory would run through the dense atmospheric layers, limiting its range to only a few miles.

 Nov 08 02, 1:15 AM

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