Contact Dr Kate Hewins


Dr Katherine Norton-Hewins completed her degree in Biology at the University of Edinburgh. This was followed by a MSc in Forensic Engineering at Cranfield University. Katherine specialised in Ballistics and completed her PhD in 'Behind Armour Blunt Trauma to the Abdomen'. A post-doc position at Wayne State University under the leadership of Professor Cynthia Bir enabled Katherine to work with multiple US and UK government agencies. The primary objective of her research at WSU was to perform an epidemiological study of the injuries that result from gunshots to personal body armour worn by Law Enforcement Personnel. The ability to assess the performance of armour, through real-life cases, aimed to provide the US’ National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the UK’s Centre for Applied Science and Technology (CAST) with the ability to assess whether or not the current certification standards are adequate.

Research opportunity

Injury Biomechanics

Personal Armour Systems

Behind Armour Blunt Trauma

Biomedical Engineering

Firearms and Ballistic Investigations

Drone Investigation

Counterfeit Material Analysis

Current activities

Katherine is the Course Director for the Forensic Ballistics MSc, PgDip Course.


Katherine is the module manager for the  'Introduction to Firearms Investigations and Forensic Ballistics', 'Forensic Ballistics Investigations' and the 'Firearms Investigation' modules.

Katherine previously lectured at Kingston University on the BSc Forensic Science Course and was module leader for the 'Counterfeit, Fakes and Forgeries module', 'Introduction to Forensic Science module' and the 'Biological Evidence and Advanced Techniques module'.


Katherine research areas include:

Injury Biomechanics, Personal Armour Systems, Less Lethal Munitions, Simulant Material testing, Blunt Trauma Injuries, Stab/Slash Investigation, Impact Testing, Protective Helmet Testing.

Katherine has previously been a member of the BABT working Group led by CAST and a member of the NIJ Protective Helmet Special Technical Committee led by Debra Stoe, Program Manager of the standards and testing, NIJ.

Dr Norton-Hewins undertakes consultancy work in drone analysis, OSINT, Firearms and Ballistic investigation, and Counterfeit material analysis.