Evaluation of a Foreign Silicon Nitride as a Potential Gun Barrel Liner

Report No. ARL-TR-5146
Authors: Jeffrey J. Swab, Dominic Danna, Charles Leveritt, and Stephanie Piraino
Date/Pages: April 2010; 24 pages
Abstract: A silicon nitride (Si3N4) ceramic manufactured by FCT Technologie GmbH, Rauenstein, Germany was subjected to a series of tests (mechanical, physical, thermal, and erosion) to determine if this material might have potential applications as gun barrel liners. The tests conducted were similar to earlier tests performed by the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) on a variety of ceramic materials, including silicon nitride, for the same application. The erosion behavior was comparable to the previously tested ceramics but the mechanical and thermal properties were inferior making it unlikely that it would survive the interior ballistic conditions of a gun barrel.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: April 1, 2010