US 3713386 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 Zaid 1 1 Jan. 30, 1973 s41 RANGE LIMITED PROJECTILE 1,712,383 5/1929 Driggs,.lr. m1. ..102/32 SYSTEM 2,043,268 6/1936 Skinner ..102/34 3,060,856 10/1962 Dunn ..102/41 Inventor: Melvin Zaid. Old Westbury, 3,211,098 10/1965 Stadler et a1 ..102/34 x  Assignee: C011 Industries Operating COI'POI'B- FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS lion, New York, NY.
415,948 1934 Great Britain ..l02/92.7  Filed: June 22, 1970 21 A N .2 Primary Examiner-Robert F. Stahl l 1 pp 0 Attorney-Prutzman, Hayes, Kalb & Chilton  U.S. Cl. ..l02/38, 102/49.5, 102/41  ABSTRACT  Int. Cl ..F42b 5/10 A close ran ge pro ectile system having a reverse thrust  held of Search rocket in the projectile which permits maximum pro- 1O2/92'74l jectile velocity and hitting power over short range onl  References Cited y 18 Claims,10 Drawing Figures UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,124,072 3/1904 Herrmann ..l02/49.5
miminmso I973 3.713.386
f I r INVENTOR MELVIN ZAID' ATTORNEYS PAIENIED m 30 Ian SHEET 2 [IF 2 FIG. 6
50 l lbo RANGE (FEET) I I H5O I200 GUQEEV \R 63m;
RANGE LIMITED PROJECTILE SYSTEM The present invention generally relates to weapons of the gun-type and is more particularly directed to an improved projectile system having unique safety features.
Conventional firearm technology has developed weapons which throw or otherwise propel a projectile at high velocities so as to develop so-called stopping or hitting power upon contact with a target located within the effective range of the projectile. For example, a standard 0.38 caliber bullet is propelled from the muzzle of a gun at a velocity of approximately 850 feet per second to develop effective stopping power over an extended range. Firearms experts consider a standard 0.38 caliber to be lethal over a distance of more than 400 yards. Such an extended deadly range is of great value in a limited number of weapon situations but is a very restricting factor in the use of a firearm having such a standard projectile range because of severe safety risks. Injury to bystanders and hunters remote from the intended close target is a common occurrence.
It is, therefore, a primary object of this invention to provide a weapon having conventional hitting power within a comparatively close target range with only limited non-lethal travel beyond that range.
It is a further primary object of this invention to provide a projectile suitable to be propelled from the barrel of a gun of both rifle and pistol types at standard muzzle velocity but having a predetermined limited range that can be small in comparison to the so-called standard projectile range.
It is an additional object of this invention to provide a close-range projectile which can be launched in any suitable manner to provide desired hitting power within a predetermined short range.
It is a still further object of this invention to provide a range-limited cartridge utilizing a standard cartridge case and having the general configuration of a standard cartridge so as to be suitable for firing from standard weapons of both the pistol and rifle type.
It is another object of this invention to provide a range-limited projectile having simplified construction so as to permit volume manufacture at low cost while being reliable both in hitting power within the preselected range and safety to bystanders beyond the preselected range.
Other objects will be in part obvious and in part pointed out more in detail hereinafter.
A better understanding of the objects, advantages, features, properties and relationships of this invention will be obtained from the following detailed description and the accompanying drawings which set forth illustrative embodiments and are indicative of the ways in which the principles of this invention are employed.
In the drawings:
FIG. I is a longitudinal cross-section view of a conventional cartridge;
FIG. 1A is a side-elevation view of the cartridge of FIG. 1;
FIG. 2 is a longitudinal cross-sectional view of a preferred embodiment of the cartridge of this invention;
FIG. 2A is a side-elevation view of the cartridge of FIG. 2;
FIG. 3 is a longitudinal cross-section view of an alternative cartridge embodiment of the present invention;
FIG. 4 is a modified cartridge similar to that of FIG. 2 but utilizing a modified transfer ignition system;
FIG. 5 is a schematic view of a gun barrel and firing mechanism suitable for use with the present invention;
FIG. 6 is a graph showing comparative projectile velocity and range relationships for a standard cartridge and the cartridge of the present invention;
FIG. 7 is a modified projectile providing both selfpropulsion and self-retardation; and I FIG. 8 is a rear-elevation view showing the propulsion nozzles of the embodiment of FIG. 7.
Turning now to FIGS. 1 and 1A for an understanding of the background of the present invention it is seen that the conventional cartridge, as for example 0.38 caliber cartridge, is provided with a cartridge case 10 and a bullet or projectile 11, the bullet being inserted into the open end of the cartridge case and crimped into position at 12 and 13 thereby to define a powder chamber 14 which is partially filled with a standard propellant 15. A primer 16 is located centrally of the rear face of the cartridge case, the primer being a conventional percussion sensitive primer which, upon engagement with a firing pin of a weapon, detonates, the shock wave and flame being transferred through passageway 17 to ignite the powder 15 which thereby producing a substantially instanteous expansion of the by-products of combustion to expel the bullet from the barrel of the gun. A typical 0.38 caliber bullet will possess a muzzle velocity of approximately 850 feet per second and will have an effective range of approximately 400 yards. The actual range is, of course, greater than 400 yards but, for purposes of the present description, the effective range i.e., that range wherein there is lethal stopping or hitting power is considered to be the effective range. The cartridge case 10 is fabricated from a suitable material such as brass and the bullet 11 may be steel, lead, steel jacketed lead or the like.
Turning now to FIGS. 2 and 2A there is seen a preferred embodiment of the present invention in the form of a cartridge having substantially the same configuration and appearance as the standard cartridge of FIGS. 1 and 1A. The cartridge case 20 is identical to that of FIG. 1 as is the primer 21 and the ignition passageway 22. The projectile 25 has a generally hollow cylindrical body portion 26 formed integrallywith nose portion 27 to receive a suitable projectile propellant (such as a solid, combustible propellant) 28 formed in the shape of a hollow cylinder to provide a central bore or ignition passageway 30. The rear of body 26 is secured to plug closure 32 by crimping of the lips 34 and by roll crimp 35 and is provided with a recess to receive a suitable primer 33, which recess communicates through ignition passageway 37 with the central bore 30 of the propellant 28. If desired, the transfer of ignition from primer 33 to propellant 28can be controlled to provide a time delay through utilization of a delay train including the passageways 36 which can be filled with an adulterated black powder to reduce the burning rate of the black powder and thereby delay ignition of the low sensitivity propellant 28 for preselected time interval. It should be noted that positioning of projectile 25 permits use of a cartridge propellant 40 that is of substantially the same mass and volume as is the charge 15 in the standard projectile cartridge. The nose 27 is provided with a nozzle having a generally conically-shaped mouth 42 which communicates through nozzle orifice 43 with the chamber 30. For purposes of preserving the integrity of the propellant charge 28 during storage there is provided a frangible disc such as of aluminum foil at 45 to preclude entrance of unwanted moisture, etc. into the passageway 30 of the propellant. Additionally the disc aids pressure buildup for the burning propellant.
Insertion of the standard cartridge of FIG. 1 into the schematic barrel and firing assembly 59 of FIG. illustrates the operation of typical cartridges. When hammer 60 strikes the firing pin 61, the primer 16 will be detonated to cause burning of the powder thereby to expel the projectile 11 from the barrel and propel it towards a target. In similar fashion insertion of the cartridge of FIG. 2 into the barrel and firing chamber assembly generally designated 59 of FIG. 5 will permit impact of the hammer 60 upon the firing pin 61 to detonate the primer 21 so that the powder charge or cartridge propellant 40 is ignited. The expanding gases will propel projectile 25 down the gun barrel, which because of the conventional rifling, will impart a high spin velocity to the projectile. The muzzle velocity achieved by the projectile of FIG. 1 and projectile of FIG. 2 will be substantially the same because the mass of the projectile is substantially the same as is the powder charge for expelling the projectiles. However, as the projectile 25 proceeds down the barrel of the weapon, the primer 33 will be detonated thereby to ignite the delay train 36 such that, after expiry of the predetermined delay, the projectile 25 while spinning at high velocity, will experience a reverse thrust caused by the burning of the projectile propellant 28. The gaseous by-products of the burning propellant easily rupture the seal 45 and are discharged through passageway 43 and nozzle 42 to exert a thrust along the axis of rotation of the projectile but in a direction opposite to the velocity vector imparted to the projectile by the propellant 40.
As best seen in FIG. 6, which is a graph of typical characteristics of the projectile; the dotted line shown is the curve of velocity versus range of the standard projectile of FIG. 1 showing an initial muzzle velocity of approximately 850 feet per second which velocity slowly decreases because of the effects of air friction, etc. to produce an effective range of nearly 400 yards. In contrast to the standard projectile, is the curve shown in solid line of the projectile of FIG. 2 wherein the projectile exits the muzzle at substantially the same velocity i.e., 850 feet per second, but during the delay period [which results in a range of approximately feet] the propellant 28 begins to burn and at 20 feet exerts a substantial reverse thrust so as to limit the travel of the projectile to approximately 35 feet; proper selection of the propellant will, of course, preclude reverse travel of the projectile or may be selected to provide limited reverse travel. It is, therefore, seen that projectile includes a self-contained reverse or retro-fire rocket which dissipates the kinetic energy of the projectile as imparted by the cartridge propellant and effectively dissipates this energy within a relatively short distance so as to provide an effective range for the projectile of 35 feet. It is noted, however, that the graph of FIG. 6 and figures selected for range and velocity are demonstrative only and that characteristics of range versus velocity can be adjusted in accordance with conventional propellant techniques.
Turning now to FIG. 3, there is illustrated a modified cartridge having a cartridge case 71, a primer 72 and a cartridge propellant 73 all of which are substantially identical in construction and characteristics as that described in connection with the embodiment of FIG. 2. The projectile 75 has a generally tubular body portion 76 with a solid rearend portion 78 formed integrally therewith. The projectile is closed at the front end by the nozzle body 80 which is crimped in position as at 81 and 82; as a matter of convenience of assembly and fabrication under certain cartridge and projectile propellant load situations, it is desirable to provide a front crimp arrangement rather than the rear crimp arrangement of FIG. 2. The nozzle 85 can be considered identical in configuration to the nozzle of FIG. 2 keeping in mind, of course, that the specific details of shape, size, etc. of the nozzle constitutes a design parameter subject to alteration in accordance with desired reverse-thrust characteristics. The rear body portion of 78 of projectile 75 is provided with a recess 87 to receive primer 88, which primer is simply swaged or crimped into position as at 89. The cartridge propellant load 90 is as described in connection with FIG. 2 as is the front seal 91 to provide the desired seal against foreign matter while being easily broken to permit egress of the gaseous by-products of propellant combustion. As a further illustration of the type of modification permitted with this type of projectile, there is provided an elongated ignition wick of nitro-cellulose 95 or gun cotton which is ignited by the primer 88 to cause the desired uniform ignition of the propellant 90 in the region of the hollow cylindrical portion 96.
In operation, the firing pin 61 of the typical weapon shown in FIG. 5 is engaged by the hammer 60 so as to detonate the primer 72 causing heat and shock ignition of the projectile propellant 73. The projectile 75 is driven out of the cartridge case and down the gun barrel by the expanding propellant gases, and at the same time, there is heat and shock ignition of the primer 88 of the projectile which, it is noted for completeness, constitutes a closure for the rear end of the cartridge case. Flame passes through the passageway 97 to ignite the gun cotton which in turn ignites the projectile propellant 90. The seal 91 is broken and the gaseous by-products of propellant burning exhaust through the nozzle 85 to exert a thrust tending to stop the projectile. The rifling of the barrel of the schematic weapon 59 imparts a conventional spin velocity to the projectile, such that, with the nozzle positioned co-axial with the spin axis, the projectile is uniformly and quickly decelerated so as to limit its effective range in the same manner described in connection with FIG. 6.
Still further modification of the invention is shown in FIG. 4 wherein the cartridge case 100, primer 101, passageway 102 and projectile propellant 103 are substantially the same as previously described. The projectile 105 is similar to the projectile of FIG. 2 in that the nose 106 and body 107 are integrally formed with plug 108 being crimped into position at the rear of the projectile. Ignition of the projectile reverse thrust" propellant 1 is accomplished through a transfer ignition train including a small tube 112, filled with an adulterated black powder 113 or other suitable delay train disposed in close proximity to gun cotton 114. Upon ignition of the main propellant charge 103, burning of the adulterated powder train 113 is started. The adulterant is selected to slow the burning rate thereby to achieve a desired time delay between ignition of the main or cartridge propellant and ignition of the gun cotton which is quickly transferred to effect ignition of the projectile propellant 110. Because the tube 112 is of very small diameter the gas loss through the tube is comparatively small and does not substantially modify the amount of reverse thrust available. Thus, the ignition of the propellant 110 will build up gas pressure, fracture end seal 115 and discharge through the nozzle 116 to effect controlled projectile slow down in the manner previously described. For completeness, it is also noted that the diameter of the transfer tube 112 is sufficiently small as to likely become closed by discharging particles, heat, etc. Also as previously described, the nozzle 116 is positioned co-axial with the spin axis of the projectile thereby to minimize any tendency of the projectile to tumble.
The utilization of the inventive concept of the present invention, while ideally suited for incorporation into standard projectiles, is also usable with more sophisticated projectiles of the type disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,419,230 and 3,345,902, which projectiles are small caliber, self-propelled rockets. Such a projectile is shown in FIG. 7 wherein the projectile 120 is shown to comprise a generally cylindrical body portion 121 formed integrally with a nose portion 122 containing a nozzle 123. The cavity 124 contains a reverse thrust propellant 125 and a forward thrust propellant 126 separated by a suitable barrier 127 through which an ignition transfer tube 128 extends. The rear body portion of the projectile is closed by a plug 130 in which are provided a series of four equally spaced, canted rocket nozzles 131, 132, 133 and 134, the plug being held in position by the swaged end 136. A conventional primer 138 is positioned in the plug and communicates through passageway 139 with the main propellant chamber. Such a projectile can be fired from a weapon similar to that U.S. Pat. No. 3,412,641 which weapon has an unrifled barrel but is similar to a conventional weapon in that a firing pin is driven against the primer 138 to cause ignition, which ignition is transferred to the main propellant charge 126. The gaseous by-products produced byburning 126 are exhausted through the aforementioned nozzles 131-134 to both propel the projectile through the barrel and to impart a spin velocity to the projectile. In the present instance, the transfer tube 128 is loaded with an adulterated powder train which is ignited by the burning of the main propellant 126 thereby to delay ignition of the reverse thrust propellant 125. Again because the projectile is spinning at a relatively high velocity, the reverse thrust causing the issuance of the exhaust gases through nozzle 123 serves to uniformly decelerate the projectile at a rapid rate so as to permit standard high projectile velocity and, therefore, high hitting power for only limited travel.
From the foregoing description it is seen that 1 have provided an improved weapon system and particularly an improved projectile which possesses the desired hitting power for very limited travel as for example 35 feet in contrast to the normal projectile lethal rangeof nearly 1,200 feet in the case of a standard 0.38 caliber cartridge. The desired hitting power of the projectile is preserved for the desired limited range with the projectile being stopped well short of normal range by retrofire of the projectile propellant. The resultant increased safety to bystanders as well as increased opportunities for use of such a firearm system is believed to be selfevident.
As will be apparent to persons skilled in the art, various modifications, adaptations and variations of the foregoing specific disclosure can be made without departing from the teachings of the present invention.
1. A weapon including a barrel, a generally cylindrical cartridge case having a closed end and an open end, a projectile received for launching in the cartridge case and closing its closed end, first-force producing means for propelling said projectile out of said barrel and along a desired path at a velocity sufficient to cause said projectile to travel a first distance, and secondforce producing means in said projectile for exerting a force in opposition to the direction of the first-force producing means thereby to limit projectile travel to a distance less than said first distance.
2. The weapon of claim 1 wherein said barrel and said first-force producing means cooperate to impart a spin velocity to said projectile and said second-force producing means exerts its force along the direction of the spin axis.
3. The weapon of claim 1 wherein time delay means are provided to delay initiation of said second-force producing means.
4. The weapon of claim 3 wherein said second-force producing means terminates its action so as to retard the projectile without producing reverse travel of the projectile.
5. The weapon of claim 1 wherein said second-force producing means is a combustible propellant and said projectile is provided with a nozzle in its nose through which the products of combustion are exhausted thereby exerting a desired retarding force on the projectile.
6. The weapon of claim 2 wherein said second-force producing means is a combustible propellant and a nozzle is provided in the nose of said projectile arranged co-axial with the projectile spin axis whereby the products of propellant combustion exhaust through said nozzle to exert the desired retarding force.
7. The weapon of claim 1 wherein said first-force producing means and said second-force producing means are located in the projectile and said secondforce producing means is initiated by said first-force producing means.
8. A projectile suitable for being propelled from a gun comprising a generally hollow cylindrical body surrounding an enclosed compartment and having a nose portion to be directed toward the target, a forwardly facing nozzle in said nose portion, the compartment in said body being adjacent said nose portion and communicating with said nozzle, means in said compartment for producing a flow of gases through said nozzle, and means for selectively initiating said gas flow thereby to produce a force opposing movement of said body toward a target.
9. The projectile of claim 8 wherein the means in said compartment is a combustible propellant and the products of combustion are exhausted through the nozzle.
10. The projectile of claim 9 wherein said means for selectively igniting the combustible includes a time delay.
11. A range limited cartridge for firearms comprising a generally cylindrical cartridge case closed at one end, a generally cylindrical projectile extending partially into and closing the open end of said case, said projectile having a cartridge end and a nose portion extending outwardly from the case and defining an enclosed chamber contained in said projectile, a first propellant located between the cartridge case and the projectile, means for igniting said first propellant to expel the projectile from the cartridge case, nozzle means in said nose portion extending outwardly from said chamber, a combustible propellant in said chamber arranged to exhaust the products of combustion through said nozzle means, and means at the cartridge end of said projectile for igniting said rocket propellant.
12. The cartridge of claim 11 wherein said nozzle means is a single nozzle arranged coaxial with the axis of the projectile.
13. The cartridge of claim 11 wherein a frangible seal closes the entrance of said nozzle.
14. The cartridge of claim 11 wherein the means at the cartridge end for igniting said rocket propellant is a primer sensitive to combustion of the first propellant and a transfer fuse igniting said combustible propellant.
15. The cartridge of claim 14 wherein said transfer fuse acts as a time delay between said primer and said rocket propellant.
16. A range limited projectile for firearms comprising a generally cylindrical body divided into a front compartment and a rear compartment, a forwardly facing nozzle in the nose of said body communicating with said first compartment, a plurality of canted, rearwardly facing nozzles in the trailing end of said body communicating with said rear compartment, propellant means in each of said compartments, ignition means for the propellant in said rear compartment and means for transferring ignition from the propellant in said rear compartment to the propellant in said forward compartment.
17. The projectile of claim 16 wherein said means for transferring ignition includes a time delay element.
18. The weapon of claim 3 wherein said second force producing means terminates its action after limited reverse projectile travel.