The idea of using the speed and power of ammunition technologies for fast and repetitive fastening processes was first implemented during the Second World War. With the help of powder actuated tools a lot of damaged ships could be repaired much more efficiently than by welding or drilling. A market success of modern pyrotechnical fastening was achieved by the brothers Martin and Eugen Hilti from the Principality of Liechtenstein. In 1953 they launched the first fastening tool shortly after the invention of a pneumatic nail gun in the USA.
RUAG Ammotec produces propellants for modern powder actuated tools. These are mainly blank cartridges, which generate a gas pressure in the main device and are used as the actuator. In the fastening tool the blank cartridges activate the thrust of the piston, which drives the respective fastening element, normally a nail, into the specified position with an exact amount of energy. These cartridges from RUAG Ammotec enable direct fastening in just one step. Previously this process required three individual operations of boring a hole, inserting a dowel and tapping a screw.