Ballistics Photography

StopShot has a mode dedicated to ballistics. When using ballistics mode the cross beam sensor is required. Our cross beam sensors allow you to get incredible placement accuracy of the projectile you are trying to capture. StopShot makes ballistics easier than ever. To use StopShot's ballistics mode all you need to do is place the sensors a known distance apart and set the distance multiplier in StopShot. For example: If the sensors are 6 inches apart and the distance multiplier configured to one, you would set your camera to take a photo at 6 inches from the last sensor. That is where the projectile will be. No more guessing the velocity and trying to calculate the distance from the sensor where the projectile will be. This method takes all of the frustration out of ballistics photos. The trickiest part of ballistics then becomes lining up the sensors and getting the flash fast enough to stop the action. As you can see from our demo pictures we were able to consistently capture a pellet buried inside something as small as an M&M (plain, not the peanut variety).

The fixture shown to the right was designed to make aligning the sensors with the projectile easier. The sensors are exactly six inches apart. Each of the four corners has an adjustable foot on it for fine adjustments up and down. This fixture is very simple to make and it saves a lot of time. No more trying to find just the right shim to get the sensors to line up with the projectile.

Tee Nut for ballistics fixture

We used a 1/4" Tee nuts like this to make the feet adjustable. The feet are just 1/4" x 3" carriage bolts.

Cross Beam Sensors Mounted on Ballistics Platform

The Ultimate in Precision

The pictures below are two consecutive photos of a pellet moving at about 300 ft/s taken with a 100 mm macro lens and a prototype flash we are working on. The scale is in centimeters (small tick marks are mm). With the ballistics mode in StopShot it is very easy to precisely place the projectile where you want it for your photo. If you have ever played with ballistics photos and air guns you know how much the speed of the pellet can vary from shot to shot. With ballistics mode this variation is compensated for by StopShot.

Stopping a Pellet with StopShot
Stopping a pellet with StopShot

The Results


Find the IR Cross Beam in the store