The Hitchman report from 1952 is one of my favorite bits of Army research. Like the 1930 Kent report before it, the findings eventually led to the adoption of the M-16 rifle and 5.56 NATO cartridge.
Norman Hitchman worked several projets for the Army’s Operational Research Office. Among them was a detailed analysis of battlefield casualties, where he developed a strong understanding of exactly how and where soldiers get shot. He leveraged that knowledge, along with other contemporary research, to devise a set of requirements for a new type of rifle.
These rifle requirements may look familiar to you, if you’ve paid attention so far. [Read Full Article »]