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Projects of the joint German-Austrian call 2013


|   Call 2013

The current ammunition of Austrian law enforcement agencies will be evaluated based on scientific ballistic experiments, (inter-)national enquiries and simulations. In close collaboration with the requiring public agency and partners in the fields of humanities, social and cultural sciences (GSK-partners) ballistic criteria for the efficacy of the police ammunition will be worked out to serve as a decision-making support for the Austrian policy makers

Since 1984 Austrian law enforcement agencies are armed with the Glock handgun calibre 9mm. Since then partial metal-jacketed bullets with a flat head (TMFK) are used as the standard police ammunition. This 30years old type of ammunition never has been tested in a standardized scientific-ballistic way in terms of its physical efficacy. Science based valid ballistic test methods have been developed in the last 15 years. In the last few years some police operations came under criticism because high numbers of live bullets had to be shot to  control and finish a critical situation which raised the endangerment on the one hand for the suspects and on the other hand for uninvolved persons and the police officers. For similar reasons other European countries e.g. Germany, Switzerland or the Netherlands in the last few years introduced the so-called police ammunition into service following a close examination of the national requirements.
The main purpose of this study is the scientific-ballistic evaluation of the current 9mm ammunition of the Austrian law enforcement agencies and the definition of possible optimizing characteristics. To reach this goal scientists from the fields of forensic medicine, ballistics, policy makers, humanities, social and cultural sciences collaborate. This cooperation during and beyond the concrete proposal will create new important competence and expertise in the field of research on Austrian security topics.
The first step is the development and definition of Austrian-specific ballistic criteria for the efficacy of the police ammunition. For this reason on the one hand past police operations with firing of live bullets will be investigated and evaluated in a scientific way and on the other hand the current ammunition of Austrian law enforcement agencies will be analysed concerning its precise ballistic characteristics. In addition to this determination of the current situation a comparison with experiences in other countries concerning police ammunition, national requirements and aspects of human rights will be integrated into the elaboration of the criteria.
In the second step the elaborated new ballistic criteria on the one hand will be applied to the past police operations with firing of live shots in a simulated form and on the other hand with regard to an implementation of new police ammunition in a prospective form considering and assessing all main impacts possible. Taking into consideration important aspects of humanities, social and cultural sciences, the results of analyses, simulations and investigations will be summarized in a study at the end of the 18-month project and communicated with the policy makers including recommendations concerning the appropriateness of new Austrian police ammunition.

Project leader
Cemit Center of Excellence in Medicine and IT GmbH

Project partner
GMI - Institut für Gerichtliche Medizin, Medizinische Universität Innsbruck
BM.I - Bundesministerium für Inneres
Direktion für den österreichischen Straf- und Maßnahmenvollzug im Bundesministerium für Justiz, kurz Vollzugsdirektion
Gudrun Rabussay-Schwald (GSK Partner)
Andreas Zembaty (GSK Partner)

Dr. Barbara Frick
6020 Innsbruck
Tel: 0512 576523 239
Fax: 0512 576523 301