Meaning of Ballistics

It is called ballistics discipline focused on the analysis of the displacement and the effects of bullets and other projectiles. The concept is also used as an adjective to refer to what is linked to this discipline.

Ballistics studies the chemical and physical issues inherent in the movement of different types of projectiles, such as bullets, missiles, and rockets. The trajectory and the force in the behavior of a projectile according to the environment are among the themes that this specialty analyzes.

The material, the appearance and the temperature of the projectile are also part of the object of study of ballistics, which seeks to provide details of the entire process: from the moment of the shot to the impact.

Ballistics has specific applications that are very important. In the case of forensic ballistics, it is responsible for the study of firearms and projectiles involved in a crime. Their contributions, many times, help solve crimes and find those responsible.

By analyzing bullets and weapons, or the effects of a projectile on a body, forensic ballistics can provide information on who fired, with what weapon, from where, in what direction, etc.

As can be seen, the analysis involved in the study of ballistics provides a large number of data that not only focuses on the projectiles themselves and their characteristics, but also on the environment in which they were fired and on their passage through it. In addition to forensic medicine, another area in which this discipline is very important is the military.

Ballistics is divided into three branches:

* internal ballistics: it focuses on the study of the phenomena that take place inside the weapon, from when it is fed until the projectile is fired;

* exterior ballistics: observe everything that happens from the moment the bullet leaves the weapon until it collides with its target or loses strength and falls. The trajectory and the effects of the environment on the projectile are two of the points of interest in this field;

* Terminal ballistics: analyze the effects of the projectile colliding with a target.

Let us suppose that, in an open field, the corpse of a man with a bullet in the head appears. Investigators find out that this individual had been threatened days ago by a neighbor. Upon reaching the suspect’s house, they find a revolver. Thanks to ballistics, it is discovered that the projectile found in the victim’s head had been fired with this same weapon. Other evidence also shows that the revolver in question was actually used by the dead man’s neighbor. In this way, ballistics can solve the case.

Police genre television series are among the most popular worldwide, although those from the United States seem to enjoy the greatest success, as they are exported to a large number of countries with corresponding dubbing. Thanks to this massification of detective stories and criminal investigations, the term ballistics is already part of the vocabulary of many people outside the police field.

Needless to say, fiction uses many resources to enhance the impact of the plot that could be considered exaggerated. Usually, the main character is a detective with an almost superhuman ability to solve cases: he just has to look at a corpse to reconstruct the scene and determine from which point he was shot, if someone was waiting for him in hiding or if it was a suicide covert. Ballistics in real life does not work so instantaneously.