A comparison of stun gun
and taser technology
Stun gun technology
Stun guns are portable battery operated electric stun devices desiged for self-defense purposes. They are non-lethal and do not cause permanent damage.
The stun gun employs a pair of high energy electrodes positioned at a distal end of a handle. Within the handle an electrical circuit generates a high energy electrical signal, which is applied to the electrodes. Upon contact of the electrodes with the fleeing or aggressive target, an electrical shock is delivered to the target, as he, she or it completes an electrical circuit between the electrodes. Unfortunately, in order to use the stun gun, the user must come into very close contact with the target, in order to make contact between the electrodes and the target. This proximity not only places the user in a position of significant personal risk of physical harm, but risks the target gaining possession of the stun gun, and turning it on the user.
Another approach to stunning or inhibiting a fleeing or aggressive target, is embodied in what is commonly known as a "taser". The taser employs a pair of projectile darts having long sharpened, barbed tips designed to penetrate clothing or animal flesh, such as human flesh. In operation, the taser is fired at the fleeing or aggressive target, with the hope that the sharpened, barbed tips embed in the flesh of the target. If the tips do embed in the flesh of the target, wires, which are connected between the darts and the taser itself, are used to deliver a high-energy electrical shock through the barbed tips to the target, who completes an electrical circuit between the barbed tips of the darts. Note however that both of the barbed tips must attach to the target and come into close contact with the flesh of the target for the electrical circuit to be completed.
Unfortunately, if one or both of the darts do not hit and implant in the target, the electrical circuit will not be completed and the taser is unable to deliver the electrical shock. In this case, the taser is rendered useless. Thus, the taser can be characterized as a wired double projectile approach in which both of the projectiles must hit and implant into the target in order for the taser to be effective. Furthermore, once the taser has been fired, it cannot be easily reloaded, and fired a second time, due to the wires connecting the taser and darts and other physical limitations of heretofore known tasers. Such wires further limit the range and velocity of the darts and thereby limit the utility of the taser to the length of the wires and the speed with which the wires can be deployed.
Additionally, even if the darts do embed in the flesh of the target, the user of the taser (or at least the taser) must remain proximate to the target until he/she is subdued, so that the wires are not broken, or tensioned to a point where either the darts are ripped out of the target's flesh, or the taser itself is pulled out of the user's hands.
A further disadvantage of the taser is that one or both of the darts may implant in the target's skin, may cause significant physical harm to the target. This is especially true if the target attempts to remove the darts from his/her flesh. In particular, unless care is exercised in firing the taser, the darts may actually prove very damaging or even lethal if they imbedded, for example, the target's throat, eyes or head. Thus, the taser, while having some commercial success, does not provide an adequate non-lethal mechanism for stunning or inhibiting a living animal, especially if the target is fleeing.