DR GARY SETTLES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR GARY SETTLES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Gun shot, coloured shadowgraph. Shadowgraphy is a type of flow visualisation, similar to but simpler than schlieren photography. Disturbances in an air flow can be seen by the shadows they cast. This shadowgram captures an instant during the firing of a Smith and Wesson 44 Magnum revolver. Blast waves and propellant gases have emerged, first from the cylinder, and later from the muzzle of the gun. The propellant gas enveloping the hand of the shooter will leave gunpowder residue. The bullet itself travels close to the speed of sound.
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