The pistol uses a single magnetic coil to pull the projectile out of the gravity fed magazine and towards the coil, thereby accelerating the projectile. It then shuts off the coil and the projectile, because of its momentum, continues on its course through the barrel and out of the muzzle.
This gun shoots 648 grain projectiles at a speed of 100 feet/second, which works out to be 14 ft/lbs of energy. To put that in perspective, it is about half the muzzle energy of a .22 CB Cap and 10% of a high velocity .22 Long Rifle’s muzzle energy. It would certainty bruise the skin.
Like laser guns and rail guns the practicability of coil guns is limited by the amount of power they require. Until we can safety store vast amounts of electrical energy in a small package, carrying around energy in the form of smokeless power will be the preferred method of reaching-out-and-touching-something.
Hat Tip: Engadget