Austin AFTE 23 Less Lethal Workshop

In May 2023, we assisted the Association of Firearm and Tool mark Examiners (AFTE) with some live fire demonstrations of common less lethal platforms.

Pepperball, FN303, ARWEN, 12 gauge and CTS 40mm systems were fired by students into static targets and ballistic media to simulate flight and impact characteristics. As scientists, we must also determine what evidence may remain after an incident for collection and analysis.

Less Lethal Rounds
.68 caliber pneumatics: FN303, Pepperball VKS
Impacts into Synthetic Ballistic Gel

High Definition Scanning (HDS)

We use the latest LIDAR technology from Leica and Faro to accurately map incident scenes for documenting evidence and for measuring bullet trajectories. The data captured from these instruments can place the viewer in the scene from any prospective making them invaluable tools for crime scene reconstruction. We have also used UAS (drones) to supplement the capture of land based point cloud data.

Trajectory Cones Using Point Cloud Data

TASER Flammability-Revisted

In 2004, Wyant was part of an extensive study that evaluated the flammability potential when OC sprays and TASERs were applied simultaneously. In 2007, the CRT Less Lethal guys published an article on Lawofficer Magazine magazine.

Our test piqued the interest of Mythbusters (episode 146), then CSI (season 8, episode 15), which each featured our experiment in an episode.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, fire associated with a TASER application appeared in the news again with reports of the ignition of a man covered with hand sanitizer. Always remember that a spark from any Conducted Electrical Weapon-CEW (TASER) will instantly ignite flammable substances under the right conditions, causing injury or death.

NFDD- Bangs and Balls

Check out our April 2020 overview of these Noise Flash Distraction Devices (NFDD): flash bangs and blast balls, on YouTube.

Our testing of these devices included the evaluation of flammability potential when used in a tactical environment with CS (tear gas). This testing was featured on Washington’s Most Wanted in 2015.

Also see our article on this topic in the Tactical Edge magazine.

The Axon Taser 7

Our firm has extensive experience analyzing evidence and data related to TASER incidents (see our article). We strive to stay up to date with emerging technology and Leroy and Tom with Seattle PD were kind enough to allow us to test fire the new TASER 7 that they are testing and evaluating.Taser 7 unit and cartridges There are significant differences from other Axon-TASER models, including new cartridges and probes. Taser 7 expertThe T7 cartridges are available in 3.5 and 12 degree configurations to provide user options for range/probe spread.Taser 7 Cartridge  Taser 7

Taser 7 Cartridge Cutaway

T7 Cutaway cartridge

impacts of T7 probes

Taser 7 deployed cartridge

The probes now contain the wire which unspools as they travel down range. The probe head will detach at tangential impacts. Forensically, the probes can analyzed where the wire is crimped to the probe head!Taser 7 probe forensics

Taser Probe types

X2 probe vs. T7 probe (bottom)


Fun with Edgertronic

less lethal

Less Lethal Rubber Buckshot

less lethal

ARWEN 37mm



Due to the wonderful generosity of #Edgertronic,  we borrowed one of their premier high speed video cameras, the SC2+, for an extended time. We were able to do some fantastic experiments and demonstrations related to firearm cycle of fire, bullet impacts, and less lethal weapons. WDF showcased that work at the NTOA conference (National Tactical Officer’s Assocaition) in Orlando,  August 2019. Our seminar, “A Holistic Approach of Police Weapons” was presented to an international audience which received great reviews.

45 Ricochet

Bullet Ricochet

flash bang less lethal

CTS Flash Bang