Further Examination of the Performance of Blank Cartridges Used in Captive Bolt Devices for the Pre-Slaughter Stunning of Animals

Andrew Grist, Randall Bock, Toby G Knowles, Stephen B Wotton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

Abstract

Blank cartridges produce gas through deflagration and are used as the main power source in captive bolt devices used within abattoirs and on farms in Europe. The European legislation recognises this and requires users to follow manufacturers’ recommendations in terms of which power cartridge to use. Variation in cartridge performance of Eley (E) cartridges was found in previous research, which was published before Accles and Shelvoke (AS) started full production of their
own cartridges. This work examined cartridge performance, structural integrity and dimensional tolerances, and found that the new AS cartridges that varied more greatly in performance in terms of velocity, kinetic energy and mechanical stability of casing than the more established E cartridges. In this study, 15% of the cartridges split at the primer flange on firing, resulting in less kinetic energy, which could impact the ability of the captive bolt to produce a successful stun. This, combined with the variation in performance in a primary component of a device that should have a uniform performance, could lead to animal welfare issues as this variation cannot be predetermined by examination of the cartridge pre firing.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAnimals
Publication statusPublished - 18 Nov 2020

Keywords

  • animal welfare
  • Blank cartridges
  • Cartridge variation
  • Captive bolt devices
  • Mechanical stunning
  • performance
  • Velocity measurement

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