When I was taught to shoot my father explained to me that aiming for the head, whilst lethal, was a fool’s bet. The upper abdomen is the prize. Home to lungs, heart, and major blood vessels. Put a shot through that and the animal won’t last long, particularly with hollow point rounds.

Lower in the abdomen will also kill but it’ll take longer. It’s also basically impossible to stop the bleeding without major surgery.

Well today I was reading this article and it looks like we’re finally getting a handle on that little problem. It reads like something out of Broken Angels (a Richard Morgan book) – reasonable with a little bit of development, but from the future. I’m a sucker for that stuff.

I’m often amazed by how little of our technology we seem to actually apply to problems. This seems like a nice example of what happens when we work across disciplines to try new things.

It’s a bit like the emergency foam in Demolition Man, immobilising the person and keeping them safe. The same principal applies here – let’s see you bleed through that! Mwuhaha!"

In my mind I’m imagining some time in the future, watching a war film. A squad are moving through some ruins when they come under fire.

One of the lads is hit and goes down, two of his comrades drag him by the shoulders to cover. The stricken soldier sounds panicked and his friends try to keep him calm in between calling for a medic who shortly arrives.

“It’s pretty bad doc, what do you think?”

Quickly and silently the medic unclips the wounded’s equipment and armour, exposing his fatigues. The wound is bleeding badly and the man is about to go into shock.

“What’s your name, soldier?”

“Franklin…”

“Really? You poor fuck. Anyway Franklin, stop freaking out, you’re going to be fine. This is going to feel pretty weird though…”

He stabs the wound with a foam pack, sealing off the worst of the damage, jabbing him with a disposable syringe of painkillers as it cures.

“You’re going to be fine, buddy.”

It seems the sort of dramatic nonsense we’ll come to expect but it should mean a lot of lives are saved.

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