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Varieties of 5.7 ammunition...
The SS90 was an early prototype round used only in the earliest examples of the P90. It used a lightweight 1.5-g (23 grain) full metal jacket bullet with a polymer core, which it propelled at a muzzle velocity of roughly 850 m/s (2,800 ft/s). The SS90 was abandoned in 1994 in favor of the heavier and 2.7-mm (0.11 in) shorter SS190 projectile.
The SS190 FMJ, a refinement of the SS90, was introduced in 1993. It offered superior performance over the prototype projectile as well as slightly reduced length. The latter change allowed it to be used more conveniently in the Five-seven pistol also being developed at that time. Fired from the P90, the SS190 propels a 2.0-g (31 grain) bullet at a muzzle velocity of roughly 715 m/s (2,350 ft/s). It has a steel penetrator and an aluminum core. The SS190 has been manufactured with a plain, black, or black-on-white tip color. It is classified by the ATF as armor-piercing (AP) ammunition, and its sale is currently restricted by FN to military and law enforcement customers.
In testing done by Houston Police Department SWAT, the SS190 fired from the P90 into bare ballistic gelatin exhibited penetration depths ranging from 28 to 34 cm (11 to 13.5 in). In testing in 1999 by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), the SS190 fired from the P90 at a distance of 25 m (27 yd) exhibited an average penetration depth of 25 cm (9.85 in) in ballistic gelatin after passing through a Level II kevlar vest.
The L191 (also formerly called the SS191) is a tracer cartridge designed for easier bullet spotting in dim light. Combustible chemicals packed in the rear of the L191 projectile create a light trail visible up to 200 m (219 yd). The L191 has been manufactured with a red or red-on-black tip. The performance and trajectory of the L191 is identical to the SS190. For this reason, it is also classified by the ATF as armor-piercing ammunition, and its sale is currently restricted by FN to military and law enforcement customers.
The SS192 was discontinued in late 2004. It used a 1.8 g (28 grain) hollow point bullet with a copper jacket and an aluminum core. The projectile had a length of 21.6 mm (.85 in). It had an unmarked hollow nose with a depth of 7.6 mm (0.3 in) and a 0.8-mm (0.03 in) opening. The SS192 was classified by the ATF as not armor-piercing, and in testing by FNH USA it did not penetrate a Level IIIA vest when fired from the Five-seven.
The SB193 (also formerly called the SS193) is a subsonic cartridge featuring a 3.6-g (55 grain) Sierra Game King FMJBT (Full Metal Jacket Boat Tail) projectile. The SB193's low muzzle velocity eliminates the distinctive "crack" created by supersonic rounds, and when used in conjunction with a sound suppressor, the muzzle report is also reduced. Due to the greatly decreased muzzle velocity, the SB193 benefits from a slightly reduced recoil force of 1.3 kgm/s. The SB193 can be identified by its white tip color. Its sale is currently restricted by FN to military and law enforcement customers.
The T194 training round was discontinued in 2002. It could be considered an early version of the SS192 or SS195. It used the same 1.8-g (28 grain) copper-jacketed aluminum core bullet, propelled at the same muzzle velocity. It had a green painted tip.
SS195LF (lead free)
The SS195LF is a commercially available cartridge that features a lead-free primer and produces ballistics similar to the SS192 round, which it replaced in late 2004. It uses the same 1.8-g (28 grain) copper-jacketed aluminum core bullet as the SS192, and it can be identified by the unmarked, hollow void at the tip and the silver-colored primer. The SS195 is classified by the ATF as not armor-piercing, and it is currently manufactured by FN Herstal in Belgium.
SS196SR (sporting round)
The SS196SR was introduced in 2005 and it is now discontinued in favor of the SS197SR cartridge. It featured a lead core 2.6-g (40 grain) Hornady V-Max bullet which it propelled at a muzzle velocity of roughly 500 m/s (1,650 ft/s) when fired from the Five-seven. The polycarbonate tip used in the V-Max bullet acts as a wedge, enhancing expansion of the bullet. The SS196 was classified by the ATF as not armor-piercing, and in testing by FNH USA it did not penetrate a Level II vest when fired from the Five-seven. The SS196 can be identified by its red polymer tip.
SS197SR (sporting round)
The SS197SR is currently offered to civilian shooters in addition to the SS195LF. It uses the same lead core 2.6-g (40 grain) Hornady V-Max projectile as the SS196SR, but it is loaded for a muzzle velocity roughly 30-m/s (100 ft/s) higher. The projectile has a blue-colored polymer tip instead of the red color used in the SS196 projectile tip. The SS197 is currently manufactured by Fiocchi under contract for FN Herstal and it is distributed in the United States by Federal Cartridge Company.
SS198LF (lead free)
The SS198LF uses the same lead-free projectile and primer as the SS195LF, but propels it at roughly 30-m/s (100 ft/s) higher muzzle velocity. It has a green painted tip, and its sale is currently restricted by FN to military and law enforcement customers.
Elite Ammunition manufactures a wide variety of 5.7×28mm ammunition offerings designed for high performance. Belgian ammunition manufacturer VBR-Belgium has also developed specialized 5.7×28mm projectiles designed for armor penetration and controlled fragmentation.
Handloading is possible with 5.7×28mm ammunition, and 5.7-mm (.224 in) bullets are widely available due to use in .223 Remington and 5.56×45mm NATO cartridges. Handloaders have noted that the 5.7×28mm cartridge is very sensitive. Bullets weighing 2.6 g (40 grains) or less are recommended for optimal use in 5.7×28mm applications, but the 1:231 mm (1:9.1 in) rifling twist rate (distance the bullet must travel to complete one full revolution) used in the firearms' barrels will stabilize bullets weighing up to 4.5 g (70 grains).
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