Thursday, August 02, 2007


In ballistics or aerodynamics, an ogive is a pointed, curved surface used to form the approximately streamlined nose of a bullet, shell, missile or aircraft.

The traditional or secant ogive is a surface of revolution of the same curve that forms a Gothic arch; that is, a circular arc, of greater radius than the cylindrical section ("shank"), is drawn from the edge of the shank until it intercepts the axis.

If this arc is drawn so that it meets the shank at zero angle (that is, the distance of the centre of the arc from the axis, plus the radius of the shank, equals the radius of the arc), then it is called a tangential or spitzer ogive. This is a very common ogive for high velocity (supersonic) rifle bullets.