As described above, the three segments - each centered 120° from each other - become a critical design element to assure the maximum performance of the Multiple Impact bullet. The key is in the design that locks each identical piece into a starting position centered 120° from each other. When fired from a rifled gun barrel the following occurs:
- Identical amount of spin is applied to each segment.
- Each segment leaves the tip of the gun at the exact same time.
- Upon leaving the tip of the gun, the spin generated forces (centrifugal force) apply identical amounts of force to each segment, moving them out simultaneously from the original center of rotation. Since the segments started 120° apart, they remain 120° apart. As the segments rapidly speed away from the center, each applies equal radial force, thereby stabilizing and maintaining the flight path of the bullet along the original flight path.
- Ultimately the rapid outward radial movement of the segments is arrested by the interconnecting tether/brake system.
- The outstretched tethers and ever present centrifugal force lock the segments into orbit at a predefined distance from the center of rotation.
- Regardless of the distance it travels, due to the law of the conservation of angular momentum and others laws of physics, the now fully expanded widespread shot pattern of the MI4 bullet continues down range, gyroscopically stabilized and preserving the benefits of a spin stabilized bullet (accuracy).
Why three identical pieces?
All MI4 bullets are composed of three identical, interconnected projectile segments because this arrangement maximizes performance in two fundamental ways:
- Balance: Each identical segment represents 120° of the bullet’s circumference and one third of the total mass; a balanced bullet is a stable bullet.
- Stopping Power: A primary design concern was to assure that each segment is capable of delivering adequate stopping power while simultaneously maximizing the hit probability of its spread pattern.
Mass of the segments:
When designing the new Wide Envelopment Bullet, the company evaluated the advantages and disadvantages of dividing the bullet assembly into 2, 3, 4, or more segments. For example, the table below lists the mass of each segment resulting from a 230 grain bullet (an extra heavy .45 caliber bullet):
- A 230 grain bullet divided into four segments would result in each projectile weighing approximately 57.5 grains, whereas a three segment division would result in each projectile weighing approximately 76.6 grains – representing a significant increase in the stopping power of each segment.
- While a 230 grain bullet divided into two parts would retain more mass per segment, another key variable would be compromised – as described below – in designing the optimal Wide Envelopment Bullet. See additional categories listed below.
Spread pattern/ Hit probability:
As depicted in the video above, the 120° separation achieved by the three section design assures that at no point in its rotating deployment will any given piece be more than 30° from a vertical or horizontal axis. This is extremely important given that randomly occurring marksman's error on any given shot typically results in a shot missing its marks on an X and a Y axis simultaneously (i.e., high and right or low and left). The 120° separation design assures an ultrahigh hit probability compared to conventional mono projectiles because one of the three pieces will be in an optimal position to compensate for most if not all of the aim point error.
A three segment bullet (as compared for a four, five, or more segment bullet) is also attractive because only three lengths of tether are required to suspend the pieces into orbit. Since the tether/brake assembly is housed in the hollow nose cavity of the unfired bullet, the volume of the tethers dictates the required size of the hollow point cavity. More tether requires a larger cavity and in turn reduces the volume of projectile material (thereby reducing mass and stopping power). In the sample table below, each segment requires a 4” tether.
Cost effective manufacturing:
By using three identical pieces, the company not only assures perfect symmetry in every aspect of the bullet’s performance during deployment, we maximize the cost-effectiveness in a large-scale manufacturing process. A Multiple Impact bullet is made from three basic parts, some being used more than once:
- Standard projectile segment x 3
- Tether break assembly x 1
- Casing, primer, powder x 1 each
Specifically engineered with large-scale production in mind, the basic components of the Multiple Impact bullet are well suited for a step-by-step manufacturing and assembly process at ultrahigh speeds, assuring a cost effective production model.
After extensive research, the design team at ABC concluded that a 3-segment projectile provides the best balance between stopping power, hit probability and cost effective manufacturing.
NOTE: ABC is exploring the use of two, four and five segment configurations for specific specialty purposes - to be revealed at a later date.