Kinetic energy does not wound. Temporary cavity does not wound. The much discussed “shock” of bullet impact is a fable and “knock down” power is a myth. The critical element is penetration. The bullet must pass through the large, blood bearing organs and be of sufficient diameter to promote rapid bleeding. Penetration less than 12 inches is too little, and, in the words of two of the participants in the 1987 Wound Ballistics Workshop, “too little penetration will get you killed.”
Given desirable and reliable penetration, the only way to increase bullet effectiveness is to increase the severity of the wound by increasing the size of hole made by the bullet. Any bullet which will not penetrate through vital organs from less than optimal angles is not acceptable. Of those that will penetrate, the edge is always with the bigger bullet.
Special Agent Urey W. Patrick
July 14, 1989
U.S. Department of Justice
Handgun Wounding Factors and Effectiveness
Firearms Training Unit
[I really need to write my post on “Energy is irrelevant” someday soon. The most recent incentive was this. Like Sebastian, I’m not convinced. The ammo doesn’t make any claims in regards to energy but I can’t imagine any of the claimed benefits outweigh the penetration and accuracy issues that are not talked about.—Joe]