Clarity of Microstamped Identifiers as a Function of Primer Hardness and Type of Firearm Action

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Kreiser, J.
Lizotte, T.
Ohar, O.
Grieve, T.
Eisenmann, David
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Eisenmann, David
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Ames National Laboratory

Ames National Laboratory is a government-owned, contractor-operated national laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), operated by and located on the campus of Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa.

For more than 70 years, the Ames National Laboratory has successfully partnered with Iowa State University, and is unique among the 17 DOE laboratories in that it is physically located on the campus of a major research university. Many of the scientists and administrators at the Laboratory also hold faculty positions at the University and the Laboratory has access to both undergraduate and graduate student talent.

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Materials Science and Engineering
Materials engineers create new materials and improve existing materials. Everything is limited by the materials that are used to produce it. Materials engineers understand the relationship between the properties of a material and its internal structure — from the macro level down to the atomic level. The better the materials, the better the end result — it’s as simple as that.
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Ames National LaboratoryMaterials Science and EngineeringCenter for Nondestructive Evaluation

The transfer of microstamped identifiers to the primers of fired cartridges was examined using a stereomicroscope and scanning electron microscope (SEM). The identifiers were placed on the firing pins of three different 9mm handguns, namely, a Sig Sauer, a Taurus, and a Hi-Point. Ten different brands of ammunition were fired from each handgun, 100 rounds being fired using each brand for a total of 1000 rounds fired per handgun. The quality of the markings was evaluated using a simple observation rubric. These results were compared to Vickers hardness values obtained from the ammunition primers and are discussed in light of the types of actions of firearms used.


This article is published as Chumbley, L. Scott, J. Kreiser, T. Lizotte, O. Ohar, T. Grieve, B. King, and David J. Eisenmann. "Clarity of Microstamped Identifiers as a Function of Primer Hardness and Type of Firearm Action." AFTE Journal 44, no. 2 (2012): 145. Posted with permission.

Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2012