The zat'nik'tel, nicknamed the "zat gun" by O'Neill, is a Goa'uld hand weapon. It delivers an electrical charge, a different and less powerful form of energy from a staff weapon, which can still be quite deadly. One shot disables with great pain, two shots within approximately 22 seconds will kill most subjects, and three shots will disintegrate a subject, causing it to vanish completely.
The zat'nik'tel has been effective against most subjects, both animate and inanimate, with a few exceptions that include Aris Boch's race, who have a natural immunity to its effects, and the Kull Warriors, whose armor is impervious to most weapons. The zat'nik'tel does not appear to have a permanent or cumulative effect, and individuals are usually able to recover from a single shot even if they have been shot multiple times in the past.
Like the staff weapon, the zat'nik'tel does not require the presence of naquadah in the blood of the user, making it a valuable technological resource for Earth. The SGC has acquired a number of zat'nik'tels from the Goa'uld, and since the second year of the program, zat guns have been routinely issued to SG teams during off-world missions. Carter and Teal'c carry the zat as their preferred sidearm.
On occasion, the discharge from a zat'nik'tel has been used for other purposes, for example as a crude form of electro convulsive therapy to counteract the effects of brainwashing agents such as nish'ta, to create an electromagnetic field that repels electrically charged energy beings, to disable or to boost the power of hyperdrive crystals, and to disable a Titan rocket.
Cross Reference: Hand Weapon, Harakash, Healing Device, In'tar, Ribbon Device, Shock Grenade, Staff Weapon, Tac, Torture Device, Weapons
First Introduced: Within the Serpent's Grasp
Significant Episode Reference: Family, 1969, Seth, Deadman Switch, Divide and Conquer, Prodigy, Entity, Evolution, Lost City