The Magnetic Accelerator Cannon, also known as Mass Accelerator Cannon, the MAC gun or MAC cannon, is a large asynchronous linear-induction weapon that serves as one of the primary offensive weapons for Templar ships.
The size of a Magnetic Accelerator Cannon is such that it is normally an integral component of a warship's structure. Some types of Defense Stations are literally built around the massive weapon for orbital defense.
A typical ship-based MAC fires slugs of either ferric tungsten or depleted uranium slugs at 30,000 m/s. The high muzzle speed gives the 130 ton slug the kinetic energy and momentum necessary to damage a target and partially mitigates the unguided nature of the slug and its lack of maneuverability.
If a MAC round hits a shielded target the round and the shield go through a test of endurance. If the shield is powerful enough, it can hold off a MAC round till it looses enough momentum to be shrugged off. If the MAC round wins out, the round will pierce the shields and do damage directly to the hull, though at a greatly lessened magnitude do to lost momentum. A lightpole sized cylinder of Super-dense Ferric Tungsten simply dropped from orbit will impact with the force of a Thermo-nuclear bomb.
The integration of the MAC to its hull means the entire warship or station must maneuver to aim the weapon. With the latest generation of AI's, hitting a fleeing ship from say, 100,000m is more than possible. It would be like sniping. At distance, you have to aim where the target is going to be, a simple calculation for an AI.
The process uses electromagnetism to fire a ferromagnetic-tungsten slug at high velocity. A huge amount of current is put through the first solenoid (coil of conducting wire) which creates a strong magnetic field which attracts the metal slug. As the slug passes into the solenoid, the solenoid is quickly turned off and the second solenoid, which is further up, turns on, which attracts the now high velocity metal slug just like the first solenoid, and the process is carried on. By the time the slug is fired out the end of the barrel it has been accelerated to a speed 40% of the speed of light. At the same time a pair of thrusters on the bottom side of the station fire for a couple of seconds to counteract the acceleration imparted to the station. The process then repeats. It normally takes ten to thirty seconds to recharge capacitors as well as load the slug, depending on the ship/station and powersource.
In actuality, the Templars don't use this technology widely as weapons. The Twilight Jedi constructed Morning Star was equipped with a 130 ton cannon, but was mothballed with only a minimal crew at any time and few rounds carried, operating as a defense ship, docked on the Ring of Remsi. For the most part, the cannon technology was used as small scale weapons, with the largest wide scale one being a 120mm cannon. In fact the biggest use of the technology was in linear catapult technology for use along spaceport and orbital elevators, and small scale ballistic munitions.