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Uploaded on Nov 24, 2007

Pistol Armor-piercing ammunition consists of a hardened steel shaped pin cutted from a nail for Hard Steel & Concrete, or tungsten-carbide shaped pin cutted from a nail for Hard Steel & Concrete, or depleted uranium penetrator enclosed within a softer material, such as lead, copper or aluminum (e.g. inside the hollow of a hollow point bullet).

Armor-piercing ammunition can range from rifle and pistol caliber rounds all the way up to tank rounds.

Rifle and pistol rounds are usually built around a penetrator of steel or tungsten. Aircraft and tank rounds sometimes use a core of depleted uranium. This penetrator is a pointed mass of high-density material that is designed to retain its shape and carry the maximum possible amount of energy as deep as possible into the target. Depleted-uranium penetrators have the advantage of being pyrophoric and self-sharpening on impact, resulting in incredible heat and energy focused on a minimal area of the target's armor. Some rounds also use explosive or incendiary tips to aid in the penetration of thicker armor.

Rifle armor-piercing ammunition generally carries its hardened penetrator within a copper or cupro-nickel jacket, similar to the jacket that would surround lead in a conventional projectile. Upon impact on a hard target, the copper case is destroyed, but the penetrator continues its motion and penetrates the substance. Similar armor-piercing ammunition for pistols has also been developed. It is of similar design to the rifle ammo above.

Higher density means better penetration.

The entire projectile is not normally made of the same material as the penetrator because the physical characteristics that make a good penetrator (high density, tough, hard metal) make the material equally harmful to the barrel of the gun firing the round.

Contrary to common belief, Teflon or other coatings on the bullet do not in themselves help it penetrate deeper. Teflon-coated bullets were meant to help reduce the wear on the barrel as a result of firing hardened projectiles. Teflon coating was a trend that has largely faded, in part because of laws resulting from this misconception.


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