The principles of recoil can be understood best by considering the forces which result from firing a cartridge in an elementar)* gun. Such a gun (shown schematically in fig. 2-1) consists of a barrel having a chamber at its rear end for receiving the cartridge and a breech closure in the form of a bolt. The bolt is rigidly locked to the barrel after the cartridge is inserted, thus providing a firm support for the base of the cartridge ease so that the case will not be blown out of the chamber bv the explosion of the propellant charge.
When the cartridge is fired, the explosion of the propellant results in the rapid generation of extremely high gas pressure in the chamber and the expansion of this high-pressure gas drives the projectile forward through the bore. As the powder gases expand behind the projectile, the center of mass of the gases also moves forward. While the projectile is in the bore, the same pressure which causes the projectile and powder gases to move forward also acts simultaneously at the breech end of
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