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A long time ago in an era much like ours, the United States poured billions into its “Star Wars” missile defense program. What those billions actually bought is still highly classified, so much so that we know very little about the various exotic space weapons conceived during the late Cold War.

One of those concepts, dubbed “Have Sting,” would have been the biggest gun in the solar system—had it ever been made.

Aerospace historian Scott Lowther has published some excellent diagrams of Have Sting, a proposed orbital railgun the size of the International Space Station. Having studied a General Electric report on the project, Lowther deduced a fair amount about the cannon’s characteristics.

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