The
velocity numbers used in this spreadsheet
were obtained from:
www.ballisticsbytheinch.com
I have
used the muzzle energy calculations from the
Wikipedia page:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muzzle_energy
where they explain:
Muzzle
energy
is the kinetic energy of a bullet as it is
expelled from the muzzle of a firearm.
It is
often used as a rough indication of the
destructive potential of a given firearm or
load.
The
heavier the bullet and the faster it moves,
the higher its muzzle energy and the more
damage it will do.
The
general formula for the kinetic energy is
Where:
v is the
speed of the bullet and
m is the
mass of the bullet.
Care
must be taken when using this formula that
consistent units are used.
In SI
units:
If the
mass, m, is in kilograms and the
speed, v, is in metres per second,
the calculated muzzle
energy,
E_{k}, will be in joules.
If the
mass, m, is in grams and the speed,
v, is in kilometres per second, the
calculated muzzle
energy,
E_{k}, will be in kilojoules.
In
American engineering units:
Mass,
m, is usually given in grains and the
speed, v, in feet per second but
kinetic energy, E_{k}, is
typically
given in footpound force.
Most
sporting arms publications within the United
States report muzzle energies in footpound
force.
These
units are not selfconsistent thus a
conversion factor must be added.
The above
formula thus becomes:
When publishing kinetic energy tables for
small arms ammunition, an acceleration due
to gravity of 32.163 ft/s2 rather than the
standard of 32.1739 ft/s2 is used. The
formula therefore becomes:
This is the formula that I use in my
calculations:
The final
number is in footpounds of force.
For
convenient comparison, the table below
depicts the most powerful results for each
worksheet in this document.
Caliber 
Ammo Type 
Mass 
5" Barrel 
4" Barrel 
3" Barrel 
2" Barrel 
2" SW 
.357 SW 
.380 Auto 
CorBon DPX 
80 



171.62 


.380 Auto 
Pow'r Ball 
70 


205.53 



.38 Special 
Speer Gold Dot HP 
135 



171.43 
241.41 
314.68 
9mm Luger 
CorBon JHP+P 
115 

442.42 
395.98 



.357 Sig 
CorBon JHP 
125 

597.97 
488.1 
382.07 


.357 Magnum 
Federal JHP 
125 

633.52 




.357 Magnum 
CorBon DPX 
125 


448.22 
305.77 


.357 Magnum 
Federal HS Low JHP 
130 





608.4 
.40 S&W 
CorBon JHP 
135 
632.53 
546 




.40 S&W 
CorBon JHP 
150 


455.36 



.44 Magnum 
Federal HS JHP 
240 
995.52 
834.37 
639.08 
474.81 


.45 GAP 
CorBon JHP+P 
165 
561.47 


367.05 


.45 GAP 
CorBon JHP+P 
185 

505.15 
409.76 



.45 ACP 
CorBon DPX+P 
225 
669.1 
597.31 
437.77 
302.19 


HERE is a link to the raw spreadsheet
data.
Things I find
interesting:
Something as small
as a 1 inch change in barrel length can
make a difference of 100  150
footpounds of force.
Sometimes a smaller
bullet has more force than a larger one
because it is travelling faster.
(As an aside, they
say you want the fastest bullet possible
because of the hydrostatic shock effect
of the high speed bullet.)
A 4inch .40 S&W
with the right ammo can be more powerful
than a 4inch .45 GAP and is almost as
powerful as a 4inch .45 ACP and a
5inch .45 GAP.
Ammunition that may
be identical in caliber and weight, and
being shot from the same firearm may
vary up to 100 foot pounds of force
depending on the manufacturer of the
ammunition.
Remember Isaac Newton:
For every action, there is an equal and
opposite reaction. The more powerful the
force of the bullet as it leaves the gun,
the equally more powerful is the recoil.
Be sure to select the
most powerful ammunition you can shoot
comfortably, consistently and accurately.
It does no good if you can't hit your target
because the ammunition is too powerful for
you to control properly.
