We’ve been on something of a gun science kick recently, exploring the bizarre physics of quirky shotgun ammo. Today, we’re not going to talk about firing silly putty out of a shotgun, but we are going to strap on our metaphorical scuba gear and dive underwater. What happens when you fire a gun underwater?
Luckily, Vuurwapenblog touched on this topic and can give us some insight about how well H2O holds up against a bullet. Check out this video of a Glock 22 Gen 4 firing a Federal HST 165gr jacketed hollow point under water.
We knew that the water would stop a bullet eventually, but holy cow – the bullet doesn’t even make it off screen before coming to a halt. You can see it stop and slowly drift down near the left of the frame. What’s particularly interesting, though, is the funnel-like bubble that explodes out of the barrel.
And did you guys notice the noise? It sounded less like a gunshot and more like a distant explosion, or perhaps a thud of somebody dropping something heavy in another room.
Some of you might have caught the Mythbusters episode that tackled this same issue. They fired a variety of different guns into a pool of water. As it turns out, that old Hollywood myth that you can swim under a hail of gunfire is actually fairly true. You can read the full results here. Some guns were able to punch through ballistics gel at depths of 10 feet, but strangely enough a .50 caliber bullet was stopped by just three feet of water at a 30-degree angle. Who would have guessed?
It’s too bad that the Mythbusters didn’t take a camera underwater to catch the effects. The bubble plume from the Glock was pretty impressive. What kind of neat visual effects would a .50 caliber bullet produce?
Luckily, there a few other YouTube videos of underwater guns to satisfy our curiosity. This video features slow motion footage of a few different handguns being fired underwater.
That one goes into some of the quirky physics of shooting a gun underwater. Ever hear of a toroidal vortex? You create one every time you fire a gun underwater.