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Guided Arrow

  [vote for,

So, guided missiles exist, but they are expensive and it's hard to carry more than a few. Besides which, using them for hunting game is probably excessive.

Other guided munitions also exist, both in fiction and in reality, but are non-reusable and, because the hardware has to survive high acceleration, expensive.

Why, therehence, has nobody suggested guided arrows? The tubular shaft of an arrow is more than amply sufficient to contain the necessary electronics. Arrows already have flights, which could be used to steer with. Arrows are often reuseable. And the acceleration on an arrow, both on launch and on impact, is far less than that on a bullet.

It should, therefore, be possible to make an arrow which would track a laser dot.

MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 01 2013

Mons Meg http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mons_Meg
A piece of ordnance in need of some modern maintenance. [Wrongfellow, Dec 02 2013]


       Ah yiss. Heat seeking.   

       May as well add a miniature rocket engine as well, which ignites after the bowstring acceleration stops.
pocmloc, Dec 01 2013

       This idea would add to the already astonishingly creative collection of hunter's excuses. "I just missed this awesome buck, it was a great shot but Gene spilled pabst on the laser designator"
bs0u0155, Dec 01 2013

       I just thought "this can't work because arrow fletching is arranged to induce the arrow to spin, for stability, and any course corrections would have to be exquisitely well timed to have the intended result" then I googled how fast bullets, presumeably including guided ones, spin. It's up to 300,000 rpm. How in the name of Greek juggery do they guide those bullets?
bs0u0155, Dec 01 2013

       (+) Now if you can come up with hunting garb which won't attract these things hunters will flock your way.
cudgel, Dec 01 2013

       The next step is guided cannonballs, I suppose.   

       Do you reckon it would be possible to retrofit a laser designator to the [link]?   

       Lobbing a 20 inch sphere of granite with millimetre accuracy at 2 miles range would be a very impressive achievement.
Wrongfellow, Dec 02 2013

       //I just thought "this can't work because arrow fletching is arranged to induce the arrow to spin, for stability, and any course corrections would have to be exquisitely well timed to have the intended result"//   

       Arrow rotation is on the order of 10s or 100s of RPM, meaning that deflections need to happen on the scale of tens or hundreds of milliseconds - pretty easy.   

       But wait! What an I saying! The point of a steerable arrow is that it doesn't _need_ to spin to stay on course!
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 02 2013

       yup. The steerable bullets are smooth-bore non- spinning too.   

       However, as a spin off.... you could use an artillery shell to replace centrifuges. Simply load up the samples, fire, and go and collect your density- separated objects from the smoking crater 11 miles down range.
bs0u0155, Dec 02 2013

       You don't think the impact of landing might mix up the separated samples?   

       Most arrows don't spin, anyway, in my experience.
pocmloc, Dec 02 2013


       "From that place, or from that circumstance; thence; also, on that account."   

       I recon that's some pretty fancy word slingin' there partner.   

       Anyway, I'd buy a guided arrow system. Sounds like fun forsooth. [+]
doctorremulac3, Dec 02 2013

       // Most arrows don't spin, anyway, in my experience. //   

       Mine do. Every arrow I've ever seen has. Does your experience include arrows made in the last century?
Alterother, Dec 03 2013

       //Does your experience include arrows made in the last century?// Yes, mid-90s to be precise.
pocmloc, Dec 03 2013

       Just checking. Modern arrows don't spin very fast, but if properly fletched they should complete at least one revolution for every twenty or thirty feet of flight. Arrows wobble a bit after release, and the spin corrects that.
Alterother, Dec 03 2013

       //A spinning arrow makes directions very hard to follow. [~]//   

       As I indicated in one of the superposed annotations, the slow rate of spin would make it easy to time directional movements of the fletches. Overmore, the spinning is actually unnecessary in a guided arrow.   

       [Edit: Ah.]
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 05 2013

       Cop: This is a one way street!   

       Driver: But I was only going one way.   

       Cop: Didn't you see the arrows?   

       Driver: I didn't even see the Indians!   

       I think [21 Quest] was making a similar little jokule.
spidermother, Dec 06 2013

       Recent developments in small super capacitors could power the electronics AND a few seconds of propulsion (by electric ducted fan). This would mitigate some of the velocity loss incurred when you make significant course correction.   

       Also, can we have the arrow head with all-flying blades acting as canards? Pleasepleaseplease?
bs0u0155, Dec 06 2013

       Sure, why not. It's not as if the archer has to hold onto the damn thing at any point.
Alterother, Dec 06 2013

       Also, the arrow head blades can carry on wiggling around once embedded, combine this with a little force and vibration from the rear-mounted EDF, should provide extra tissue damage.
bs0u0155, Dec 06 2013

       This idea started me thinking about a fletch-less arrow stabilized by air channels cut into the shaft, or even tiny ducts running up through the core and slightly compressing the air flow before releasing it from angled ports in the nock.
Alterother, Dec 06 2013

       I'm not sure where you expect to find these tiny ducks, or how they'll stand up to the acceleration.
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 08 2013

       Do you think early-80's pop legends ABC could be persuaded to come out of retirement to rework their song 'Poison Arrow' as 'Guided Arrow' for the TV commercial for this product?
hippo, Dec 08 2013

       //ABC could be persuaded to come out of retirement   

       I'd pay money not to see them come out of retirement.
not_morrison_rm, Dec 09 2013


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