Comparison of the terminal ballistics of full metal jacket 7.62-mm M80 (NATO) and 5.56-mm M193 military bullets: a study in ordnance gelatin

J Forensic Sci. 1988 May;33(3):676-96.


Great controversy has surrounded the replacement of the 7.62-mm caliber by the reduced 5.56-mm caliber as the standard U.S. military rifle. Although its relevance to human wounding can be debated, the terminal ballistics of military small arms in ordnance gelatin remains a convenient medium for comparative testing. In the present study, 7- by 10- by 24-in. (18 by 25 by 61 cm) blocks of 20% ordnance gelatin were fired upon from a range of 19 ft (6 m) under high-speed cinemagraphic surveillance. The tendency of the M193 5.56-mm full metal jacket projectile to break up in soft tissue simulant was confirmed as a fundamental difference from the 7.62-mm M80 NATO ball.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Bone and Bones / injuries
  • Firearms / classification*
  • Gelatin
  • Humans
  • Models, Structural
  • Wounds, Gunshot*


  • Gelatin