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A hollow point is an expanding bullet that has a pit or hollowed out shape in its tip, often intended to cause the bullet to expand upon entering a target in order to decrease penetration and disrupt more tissue as it travels through the target. It is also used for controlled penetration, where over-penetration could cause collateral damage (such as on an aircraft). In target shooting, they are used for greater accuracy and reduction of smoke, fouling, and lead vapour exposure, as hollow point bullets have an enclosed base while traditional bullets have an exposed lead base. In essence, the hollow point bullet has several purposes: hollow points designed to expand increase in size once within the target, thus maximizing tissue damage and blood loss or shock, and to remain inside the target, thereby transferring all of its kinetic energy to that target (some fraction would remain in the bullet if it passed through instead). Jacketed hollow points (JHPs) or plated hollow points are covered in a coating of harder metal to increase bullet strength and to prevent fouling the barrel with lead stripped from the bullet. The term hollow-cavity bullet is used to describe a hollow point where the hollow is unusually large, sometimes dominating the volume of the bullet, and causes extreme expansion or fragmentation on impact. Plastic tipped bullets are a type of (rifle) bullet meant to confer the aerodynamic advantage of the spitzer bullet (for example, see very-low-drag bullet) and the stopping power of hollow point bullets.
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