Saturday, March 7, 2009

What Happens To A Bullet Fired Straight Up?

A 150-gr .30-'06 bullet will return to earth at 320 feet per second.

A 718-gr .50-caliber bullet will return to earth at about 500 feet per second, with energy of about 400 foot pounds.

A 1000-pound 12-inch artillery shell will return with a speed of about 1300-1400 feet per second and over 28,000,000 ft. lbs. of energy.

- from "Hatcher's Notebook", p514

2 comments:

mts1 said...

Think of all the fun those guys at Hatcher's had doing the field tests to figure that stuff out!

I know, they did it indoors via math, but I still like the visual of a couple of guys at opposite ends of a field:

"Hey Stan, be ready to measure the speed of this here 1000 lb. round."

"Go ahead Pete, fire away."

Turk Turon said...

Some of the tests of the .30-'06 were actual test-firings, straight up, over a body of water. Among their findings were that bullets return to earth "tail down" due to spin imparted by rifling of the barrel. Some boat-tailed .30-'06 bullets were unstable to the point where a burst fired from a machinegun would have some bullets "nose-over". They inferred this when bullets from a single burst came down in two groups, the first in 66 seconds and the second group in one minute and forty-six seconds.