Imagine the stopping power of 12-gauge shotgun rounds and penetration that's nearly lethal but doesn't bring any risk of death. That's the promise behind SmartRounds, a high-tech ammunition option, and a funding campaign at Indiegogo.

Microchips embedded inside ammunition detonate a shotgun shell milliseconds before the bullet arrives at a target. It then strips the bullet of its flesh, which turns into a stream of pure kinetic energy that stops a bad guy in his tracks but doesn't kill him.

SmartRounds are fitted with two microchips, an accelerometer the activates after the bullets are fired and a Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) image sensor that detonates the projectile. The rounds flatten a threatening assailant, without taking the individual's life, SmartRounds Technology CEO Nick Verini told Tech Times.

The ShockRound produces a flash-bang and nitrogen gas shock wave that disables an assailant. The PepperRound produces a flash-bang and a capsaicin cloud that causes a burning sensation to the eyes and throat, rendering the assailant unable to continue, according to Verini's Indiegogo campaign site.

"The main benefit of our nonimpact, nonlethal SmartRounds is to offer a means to stop an attacker without causing that person serious injury," says Verini. "The fact that they are nonimpact, in addition to nonlethal, increases their chances of success."

If being bowled over by the 450-feet-per second force behind SmartRounds isn't enough, the intelligent ammo also deals a stunning flash of light in its ShockRound variant. PepperRounds, the second variant of SmartRounds, adds a blast of pepper spray to the mix of blinding light and kinetic force.

Other benefits include the ability to fire a round from a standard 12-gauge shotgun, low recoil, so a smaller shooter can fire it accurately, and a smaller format of a 12-gauge shotgun, such as a Serbu Super Shorty, can be used, Verini says.

"If things go as planned, we intend to develop a small 12-gauge pistol that will fire our rounds. We do have other variants in the works," adds Verini.

The project to create a high-tech nonlethal ammunition was birthed after the devastating 1999 Columbine tragedy in Colorado, explains Verini on his Indiegogo site. He and his family moved to the state in 1993. He believes there is a true need for a nonlethal but effective defensive weapon.

"These rounds are intended for the military such as the Joint Nonlethal Weapons Program directed by the U.S. Marines working on nonlethal weapons for military units worldwide," says Verini "Others include law enforcement, border patrol, corrections, security firms, and citizens."

To learn more about SmartRounds, click here to visit the campaign's site on Indiegogo. Verini is also inviting potential supporters to visit SmartRounds' website,

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