Shrapnel Magazine 004 (Cover).jpg
The PPC: (Not) Lightning in a Can
Story information
Author Matthew Cross
Pages 5
Type Short Story
Product Shrapnel Issue 4
Era Dark Age Era
Agency New Avalon Institute of Science
Universe Date 25 September 3125
Preceded by Gauss Rifles
Followed by The Art of Salvage

PPCs is a transcript of an in-universe lecture held by the New Avalon Institute of Science's College of Military Science on the Inner Sphere-grade PPC and its derivatives. It was written by Matthew Cross and published in the fourth issue of Shrapnel.

Plot summary[edit]

Dr Kiran Suzuki hosts the seventh of a series of lectures as part of "BME 210: Advanced Weaponry Engineering for MechWarriors" this time discussing the ubiquitous PPC, albeit restricted purely to lab reviews and simulators thanks to Cadet "Tear Tooth" Perry badly crippling a Blackjack Omni training 'Mech after he tripped and fell onto its Gauss Rifle, detonating its capacitors.

Suzuki touches on the history of what is considered nearly every MechWarriors favorite weapon, discussing the common components of its design irrespective of manufacturer and general method of operation as well as the vital importance of inhibitors to effectively stop the weapon backfiring and the impact upon short-range they impose. Suzuki then moves on to talk about the BattleMech-scale variants of the weapon developed by Inner Sphere, touching on the design and reintroduction of the ER PPC before focusing on how the Draconis Combine developed the Light and Heavy PPCs.

Suzuki then briefly discusses the benefits and negatives of the Star League era Snub-Nose PPC before covering the increasing appearance of PPC Capacitor and destructive possibilities of achieving the same result with stock weapons. The transcript concludes with Suzuki dreaming of the reinstatement of live-fire lab sessions to show the first-hand the brief impacts to the electronic systems of 'Mech when struck by PPC fire separate from the damage to armor by shooting at the cadets, before directing them to undertake an in-depth review of the inner workings of the commonly manufactured Hellstar Particle Canon.

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