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When a crime scene involves blood someone can be hurt or worse, dead. In situations like this law enforcement officials call upon experts in bloodstain pattern analysis or BPA to determine the details of what happened as quickly as possible. Every drop of blood tells a story, here is how experts piece together the mystery at a crime scene.


How Bloodstain Pattern Analysis Works:

What BPA Can Determine:

  • Date and time of crime
  • Type and velocity of weapon
  • Movements/position of those involved
  • If the assailant was left or right handed
  • Types of injuries dealt
  • Whether death was immediate

Blood and Your Body:

  • In the human body, blood accounts for roughly 8% of body weight
    • Male 5-6 L
    • Female 4-5 L
  • If 1.5L of blood is lost unconsciousness may occur.
  • If 40% of blood is lost death becomes a risk.

The Types of Spatter:

  • Low-Velocity:
    • Force of Impact: 5 feet per second
    • Droplet Diameter: 4-8mm
    • Possible Source: Dripping blood
    • Passive spatters
  • Medium- Velocity:
    • Force of Impact: 5-100 fps
    • Droplet Diameter: Less than 4mm
    • Possible Source: Blunt Object, fist. Stabbing
    • Artery Spray
  • High- Velocity:
    • Force of Impact: >100fps
    • Droplet Diameter: Less than 1mm
    • Possible Source: Gunshot wounds

Types of Wounds:

If no victim is present forensic analysts can use the information gathered from BPA to assess what kind of wounds may have been dealt:

  • Incisions
  • Lacerations
  • Penetration wounds
  • Gunshot wounds
  • Abrasions
  • Puncture wounds

Although it can be eerie to think about the science behind bloodstain pattern analysis is what bring many perpetrators to justice.


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What a bloody mess

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