AMA: Bryan Litz & Nick Vitalbo of Applied Ballistics

    Welcome to TFB’s first AMA (Ask Me Anything). Our debut AMA’ers are Bryan Litz, Ballistician, Author and President of Applied Ballistics and Nick Vitalbo, Principal Engineer at Applied Ballistics.

    This is your chance to ask two of the top firearm ballistic experts in the country any questions you have about ballistics, gun accuracy, long range shooting and the future of firearms. Check out their website to get an idea of what these guys do.

    Here is how the AMA works:

    1. Ask any question in the comments below.

    2. Bryan & Nick will monitor this webpage on Wednesday and answer questions as soon as they can by replying to them in the comments.

    3. Be polite. Nick and Bryan are our guests are not required to answer every question asked.

    Bryan Litz – Ballistician, President of Applied Ballistics, Inc.

    Bryan graduated from Penn State University with a degree in Aerospace Engineering in 2002. Following graduation, he began a career working for the US Air Force on Air-to-Missile design, modeling and simulation; spending six years at Wright-Patterson Air-Force Base.  In November 2008, he left the government and became the Chief Ballistician for Berger Bullets.

    Bryan founded Applied Ballistics and has written many ballistics programs and technical papers dealing with long-range flight dynamics of projectiles. His books, “Applied Ballistics for Long Range Shooting“ and “Accuracy and Precision for Long Range Shooting ” have been widely received in the shooting and precision marksmanship communities.  They are considered invaluable assets to the art of long-range shooting and ballistics.

    Additionally, Bryan is a champion long-range shooter who has won numerous regional, national and international tournaments.

    Nick Vitalbo – Principal Engineer at Applied Ballistics, President of nVisti Technology Inc.
    Nick obtained both his B.S. in Electrical Engineering and B.A. in Computer Science from Bucknell University in 2003 with areas of concentration on Physics and Mathematics.

    For the next eight years, he worked for Lockheed Martin where he was the Engineering Program Manager and Chief Engineer for Lockheed Martin’s Precision Engagement Technology Group.  During that time, Nick was responsible for the developing the system design of the One Shot wind measurement system and he is the principal investigator for several wind measurement and ballistics programs within the U.S. government.

    Nick has partnered with Applied Ballistics and has been the technical lead on the IBEAM program executed through Applied Ballistics, Inc. and responsible for the development and integration of the hardware and software for the Applied Ballistics Kestrel devices, the Rapid Engagement Modules, the Wind Sensor Array systems, as well as the Applied Ballistics Tactical Application (US military only).

    Additionally, he has developed several other ballistics and wind sensing applications such as the Applied Ballistics Wind Sensor Array and the Android version of the Applied Ballistics Tactical Solver.

    His specialties include hardware / software Integration, laser beam propagation, and EO/IR sensors systems.

    Modern Advancements for Long Range Shooting by Bryan Litz

    Modern Advancements for Long Range Shooting is a book series by Bryan Litz, which documents the ongoing R&D taking place in the Applied Ballistics laboratory.  Volume I of the series is scheduled for release in late July 2014. 

    In the first Volume, extensive test results are presented which fully explore the effects of twist rate on muzzle velocity, BC (supersonic and transonic), precision, even spin rate decay for various rifling profiles is tested experimentally.

    Other sections detail the evolution of modern rifle, bullet, and optic design.

    Results from extensive chronograph testing are presented which show the strengths and weaknesses of available commercial chronographs.

    High tech instrumentation such as laser rangefinders and wind measurement devices are explained in detail by contributing author Nick Vitalbo.

    The series is heavily based in experimental ballistics, and takes a sort of ‘mythbusters’ approach to many of the questions and problems faced by modern long range shooters.  In todays world of marketing hype and movie magic, Applied Ballistics continues to explore long range shooting using the scientific method, and publishes the results in a non-biased way that’s easily understood by the layman.

    Future volumes are planned to cover the ongoing testing and evaluation activities of Applied Ballistics.

    Steve Johnson

    I founded TFB in 2007 and over 10 years worked tirelessly, with the help of my team, to build it up into the largest gun blog online. I retired as Editor in Chief in 2017. During my decade at TFB I was fortunate to work with the most amazing talented writers and genuinely good people!